Green composites of poly(lactic acid)-PLA and hazelnut shell flour (HSF) with and without epoxidized linseed oil (ELO) as plasticizer/compatibilizer were subjected to different aging conditions such as water uptake by immersion and disintegration in compost soil. The effect of the hydrolytic degradation was analyzed by measuring the weight gain as a function of the immersion time in water and calculating the corresponding diffusion coefficients. As expected, the water diffusion coefficient increases with HSF content while no remarkable change is obtained for plasticized compositions with ELO. Differential scanning calorimetry reveals a noticeable increase in crystallinity after the degradation process by water immersion. Degradation in controlled compost soil was followed thorough measurements of weight changes. In general, the weight change for a particular degradation time is lower as the HSF content increases. In addition, presence of ELO as plasticizer/compatibilizer delays the degradation process in compost soil. Scanning electron microscopy highlighted a noticeable deterioration of aged samples after 2 weeks with multiple crack formation and high surface abrasion due to microbial activity after 4 weeks.
Journal of Polymers and the Environment – Springer Journals
Published: Mar 16, 2017
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