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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Albany, California » Western Regional Research Center » Bioproducts Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #274999

Research Project: Biorefining Processes

Location: Bioproducts Research

Title: Effect of solvent on the physical and morphological properties of poly(lactic acid) nanofibers obtained by solution blow spinning

Author
item Olivera, Juliano - Embrapa
item Brichi, Glaucia - Embrapa
item Marconcini, Jose - Embrapa
item Mattoso, Luiz - Embrapa
item Glenn, Gregory - Greg
item Medeiros, Elitons - Universidade Federal Do Rio De Janeiro

Submitted to: Journal of Engineered Fibers and Fabrics
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/17/2014
Publication Date: 11/26/2014
Citation: Olivera, J.E., Brichi, G.S., Marconcini, J.M., Mattoso, L.H., Glenn, G.M., Medeiros, E. 2014. Effect of solvent on the physical and morphological properties of poly(lactic acid) nanofibers obtained by solution blow spinning. Journal of Engineered Fibers and Fabrics. 9(4):117-125.

Interpretive Summary: Solution blow spinning (SBS) is a simple, safe, and inexpensive alternative to electrospinning for making nanofibers from polymer solutions. However, since SBS is a relatively new technique, there is a general lack of information on polymer solutions and properties that affect fiber morphology and intrinsic properties. ARS researchers in collaboration with scientists at the Embrapa Research facility in Sao Carlos, Brazil reported the solution properties of poly(lactic acid) (PLA) dissolved in three different solvents. The results of this research will help further the understanding and utility of the SBS process in making nanofibers.

Technical Abstract: Solution blow spinning (SBS) is a simple, safe, and inexpensive alternative to electrospinning for making nanofibers from polymer solutions. However, since SBS is a relatively new technique, there is a general lack of information on polymer solutions and properties that affect fiber morphology and intrinsic properties. The present study reports the solution properties of poly(lactic acid) (PLA) dissolved in chloroform, dichloromethane, and dichloroethane at 4%, 6%, or 8% (w/v) and the properties of fibers made by SBS. In contrast to 4% polymer solutions, fibers made from 6% polymer solutions had few beads and diameters in the range of 120-320 nm. Diameters were greater (311-570 nm) for fibers made from 8% polymer solutions. Solvent evaporation rate affected the fiber porosity and formation. Hansen solubility parameters indicated that dichloromethane was the solvent most miscible with PLA. Fibers made with PLA in dicloromethane had the narrowest range in fiber diameter. Hansen parameters could be a valuable predictive tool for identifying highly miscible polymer/solvent systems for the SBS process. Polymer solutions with high viscoelasticity and viscosity were well suited for the SBS process. Fibers made from polymer solutions containing dichloroethane had lower crystallinity compared to fibers made from the other solvents