Journal of Polymers and the Environment

, Volume 20, Issue 4, pp 916–925 | Cite as

Interfaces in Cross-Linked and Grafted Bacterial Cellulose/Poly(Lactic Acid) Resin Composites

  • Franck Quero
  • Stephen J. Eichhorn
  • Masaya Nogi
  • Hiroyuki Yano
  • Koon-Yang Lee
  • Alexander Bismarck
Original Paper


This article presents approaches to maximize the mechanical performance of bacterial cellulose/poly(lactic acid) composites through chemical modification of the interface. This is achieved by both cross-linking the layered bacterial cellulose structure and by grafting maleic anhydride to the matrix material. Unmodified and glyoxalized bacterial cellulose (BC) networks have been embedded in poly(lactic acid) (PLA) resin and then in maleated resin using a compression molding method. The effect of these chemical modifications on the physical properties of these composites is reported. The tensile properties of the composites showed that Young’s moduli can be increased significantly when both BC networks and PLA were chemically modified. Interface consolidation between layers in BC networks has been achieved by glyoxalization. The effect of these modifications on both stress-transfer between the fibers and between the matrix and the fibers was quantified using Raman spectroscopy. Two competitive deformation mechanisms are identified; namely the mobility between BC layers, and between BC and PLA. The coupling strength of these interfaces could play a key role for optimization of these composites’ mechanical properties.


Raman spectroscopy Stress-transfer Bacterial cellulose Interface Biocomposite 



Two authors (FQ and SJE) would like to thank the EPSRC for funding a PhD studentship (to FQ) under Grant GR/F028946.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Franck Quero
    • 1
  • Stephen J. Eichhorn
    • 1
    • 5
  • Masaya Nogi
    • 2
  • Hiroyuki Yano
    • 3
  • Koon-Yang Lee
    • 4
  • Alexander Bismarck
    • 4
  1. 1.School of Materials, Materials Science CentreUniversity of ManchesterManchesterUK
  2. 2.The Institute of Scientific and Industrial ResearchOsaka UniversityIbarakiJapan
  3. 3.Research Institute for the Sustainable HumanosphereKyoto UniversityUjiJapan
  4. 4.Polymer and Composites Engineering (PaCE) Group, Department of Chemical EngineeringImperial College LondonLondonUK
  5. 5.College of Engineering, Mathematics and Physical SciencesExeterUK

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