Title: Biodegradable Films and Foam from Renewable Plant Polymers Authors
Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: January 2, 2005
Publication Date: March 2, 2005
Citation: Imam, S.H., Shey, J., Glenn, G.M., Holtman, K.M., Chiou, B., Klamczynski, A., Orts, W.J. 2004. Biodegradable films and foam from renewable plant polymers. BioEnvironmental Polymer Society International Meeting in Monterrey, Mexico, December 5-10, 2004. Paper No. 41 (Abstract). Technical Abstract: Plant derived polymers such as starch, pectin, latex and underutilized agricultural fiber were blended and processed into films and foams. Generally, the addition of latex improved the mechanical property of the products as well as their moisture resistance. Incorporation of fiber as filler was, in some cases, accompanied by a loss in mechanical strength of the matrix. The extent of loss of mechanical strength varied somewhat based on the fiber size, shape and its botanical origin. Also, some fibers appear to be exposed mostly on the surface making the matrix highly abrasive. Interestingly, all films and foams degraded in compost within 6-8 week period. Films and foams with pectin and higher starch content degraded at a much faster rate. Despite few impediments, biobased renewable materials offer a great opportunity as a possible replacement of petroleum based synthetic polymers. Application of biobased materials in non-food consumer products will be discussed.