The Effect of Nanoclays on the Properties of PLLA-modified Polymers Part 1: Mechanical and Thermal Properties
Organically modified montmorillonite clays were incorporated at a 5% loading level into film grade of poly-L-lactic acid (PLLA) using a variety of masterbatches based on either semi-crystalline or amorphous poly-(lactic acid), as well as biodegradable aromatic aliphatic polyester. The PLLA masterbatches and compounded formulations were prepared using a twin screw compounding extruder, while the films were prepared using a single screw cast film extruder. The thermal and mechanical properties of the films were examined in order to determine the effect of the clay and different carriers on the polymer–clay interactions. In the optimal case, when a PLLA-based masterbatch was used, the tensile modulus increased by 30%, elongation increased by 40%, and the cold crystallization temperature decreased by 15 °C, compared to neat PLLA. The properties improvement of PLLA films containing nano clays demonstrated the possibility to extend the range of biodegradable film applications, especially in the field of packaging.
KeywordsBiodegradable Poly-(lactic acid) Nanocomposites Polymers
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