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Cellulose

, Volume 24, Issue 3, pp 1417–1426 | Cite as

Ultra-lightweight cellulose foam material: preparation and properties

  • Ran Li
  • Jinyan Du
  • Yanmei Zheng
  • Yueqin Wen
  • Xinxiang Zhang
  • Wenbin Yang
  • Ang Lue
  • Lina Zhang
Original Paper

Abstract

Ultra-lightweight cellulose foams were prepared by regeneration of sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS)/cellulose/NaOH/urea blend solution via mechanical agitation and then freeze-drying. The morphology and properties of the blend solutions and foams were investigated via optical microscope, rheometer, BET and SEM. As a result, it was found that the inclusion complex structure between cellulose macromolecules and the solvent molecules was not destroyed. Moreover, the bubbles were about 20–50 μm in the solutions and larger (>100 μm) in the foams. Not only the micropores (bubbles) but also the nanopores could be observed in the wet and dried foams. The cellulose foams possessed ultra-low density of about 30 mg/cm3 and high specific surface area. The result of X-ray diffraction and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy indicated that the cellulose foams were transited from cellulose I to cellulose II after dissolution and gelation. Bubbles inside the wet foams weakened the mechanical properties, but inversely increased the mechanical properties in the dried foams. Typical “J”-shaped curves were observed during the mechanical test, which revealed good compressive strength of dried foams. In this work, cellulose foams with ultra-lightweight and good mechanical properties were obtained, which exhibited great potentials for further development and comprehensive utilization of cellulose.

Keywords

Cellulose Ultra-lightweight foam NaOH/urea aqueous solution Porous materials Multilevel pore 

Notes

Acknowledgment

This work was supported by Natural Science Foundation of Fujian Province (2016H6005) and Research Foundation of Education Bureau of Fujian Province (JB13037, JAT160148).

Supplementary material

10570_2017_1196_MOESM1_ESM.doc (634 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOC 634 kb)

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ran Li
    • 1
  • Jinyan Du
    • 1
  • Yanmei Zheng
    • 1
  • Yueqin Wen
    • 1
  • Xinxiang Zhang
    • 1
  • Wenbin Yang
    • 1
  • Ang Lue
    • 2
  • Lina Zhang
    • 2
  1. 1.College of Material EngineeringFujian Agriculture and Forestry UniversityFuzhouChina
  2. 2.Department of ChemistryWuhan UniversityWuhanChina

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