The role of nanocellulose fibers, starch and chitosan on multipolysaccharide based films

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Abstract

Thin nanocomposite films of thermoplastic starch, chitosan and cellulose nanofibers (bacterial cellulose or nanofibrillated cellulose) were prepared for the first time by solvent casting of water based suspensions of the three polysaccharides. The role of the different bioploymers on the final properties (thermal stability, transparency, mechanical performance and antimicrobial activity) of the films was related with their intrinsic features, contents and synergic effects resulting from the establishment of interactions between them. Thermoplastic starch displays an important role on the thermal stability of the films because it is the most stable polysaccharide; however it has a negative impact on the mechanical performance and transparency of the films. The addition of chitosan improves considerably the transparency (up to 50 % transmittance for 50 % of chitosan, in respect to the amount of starch), mechanical performance and antimicrobial properties (at least 25 % of chitosan and no more than 10 % of cellulose nanofibers are required to observe bacteriostatic or bactericidal activity) but decrease their thermal stability. The incorporation of cellulose nanofibers had the strongest positive impact on the mechanical properties of the materials (increments of up to 15 and 30 MPa on the Young's modulus and Tensile strength, respectively, for films with 20 % of BC or NFC). Nonetheless, the impact in thermal stability and mechanical performance of the films, promoted by the addition of chitosan and cellulose nanofibres, respectively, was higher than the expected considering their percentage contents certainly because of the establishment of strong and complex interactions between the three polysaccharides.
Original languageUnknown
Pages (from-to)1807-1818
JournalCellulose
Volume20
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2013

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