Submitted to: Meeting Proceedings
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/1/2009
Publication Date: 10/13/2009
Citation: Malmonge, J.A., Medeiros, E.S., Rosa, M.F., Wood, D.F., Mcmahan, C.M., Mattoso, L.H. 2009. Composite of Natural Rubber Extracted from Guayule Reinforced with Cellulose Microfibers. 10th Brazilian Polymer Congress, October 13-17, 2009, Iguassu Falls, PR, Brazil. Interpretive Summary: The USDA’s Domestic Natural Rubber project has an ongoing collaboration with scientists from Embrapa Instrumentacão Agropecuária, Brazil, under the interagency Labex program. USDA/ARS and Embrapa are both interested in natural rubber production, and in new combinations of sustainable materials to help open markets for their use. In this work, a new US-produced source of commercial natural rubber latex, guayule, is combined with cellulose fibers to produce composites with interesting engineering properties.
Technical Abstract: In this work composites of natural rubber extracted from Guayule (Parthenium argentatum) and cellulose microfibers, extracted from cotton fibers by acid hydrolysis, were obtained. The effects of the microfiber content on the mechanical properties of the composites were investigated by tensile tests and scanning electron microscopy. Deformation at break and tensile modulus increased as a function of microfiber content. For the composite with 15% wt% of fiber an increase in the rupture at break up to 500% was obtained. On the other hand, deformation at break decreased by 50% of its value for non-reinforced rubber. SEM micrographs showed good adhesion between fibers and the rubber matrix, which helped impart a good stress between the interfaces.