5 years ago

Characterization and mechanical properties of ultraviolet stimuli-responsive functionalized cellulose nanocrystal alginate composites

Characterization and mechanical properties of ultraviolet stimuli-responsive functionalized cellulose nanocrystal alginate composites
Megan Smyth, Julien Bras, Chris Rader, E. Johan Foster
The poor mechanical properties of alginate when exposed to aqueous solution have been a problem plaguing researchers within the biomedical field. In order to be able to improve the mechanical properties in a systematic manner functionalized cellulose nanocrystals (CNCs) were added to alginate and UV-induced crosslinked following an azo-initiated free radical polymerization. CNCs were functionalized with 4-pentenoic acid (PA-g-CNCs) using a simple, environmentally friendly solvent-free esterification. The dimensional and crystallinity properties of PA-g-CNCs remained unchanged following esterification. Thermogravimetric analysis, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, and 13C nuclear magnetic resonance indicated that 4-pentenoic acid was present on the surface of CNCs through bulk analysis. These PA-g-CNCs were then used in the creation of composites with an azo-initiator to induce UV-dependent crosslinking for the improvement of the mechanical properties of alginate. It was shown that the properties of alginate can be enhanced with the addition of functionalized CNCs to nanocomposites in mechanical testing in wet and dry conditions. These results suggest that the addition of PA-g-CNCs and crosslinking by UV-dependent free radical polymerization improves the performance of alginate when tested in dry conditions, but without any apparent dependence to azo-initiated crosslinking when exposed to water in regards to mechanical properties. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 2017, 135, 45857.

Publisher URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/resolve/doi

DOI: 10.1002/app.45857

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