Recycling chicken feathers to produce adsorbent porous keratin-based sponge
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Feathers are likely the most plentiful protein materials in the natural world. However, a significant amount of this resource has been wasted by burning or entombing. Recycling and developing a method for extracting keratin from such wastes have been the objective of many researches. In this research, keratin was extracted from chicken feather waste by enzymatic hydrolysis using an alkaline protease. The effects of three factors such as enzyme concentration, amount of reducing agent and hydrolysis time were evaluated to find the optimum enzymatic hydrolysis condition. Porous sponge of extracted keratin was then prepared by freeze-drying method. To improve the integrity of sponge structure, different amounts of polyvinyl alcohol were added to keratin solution and the obtained sponges were characterized. The physiochemical properties of the produced regenerated keratin sponge were evaluated by scanning electron microscopy, Fourier transform infrared spectrophotometer, Brunauer–Emmett–Teller surface area analyzer and oil absorption tests. The obtained results showed that the fabricated porous sponge has a high potential to be applied as a promising adsorbent.
KeywordsFeather Recycling Keratin Porous sponge Adsorbent
The authors acknowledge the academic staffs of Textile Engineering Department of Amirkabir University of Technology, Tehran, Iran.
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