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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service


Location: Functional Foods Research

Title: Mechanical properties of high density polyethylene--pennycress press cake composites

item Reifschneider, Louis
item Tisserat, Brent
item Harry-o`kuru, Rogers

Submitted to: Society of Plastics Engineers Proceedings
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/21/2013
Publication Date: 4/24/2013
Citation: Reifschneider, L., Tisserat, B., Harry O Kuru, R.E. 2013. Mechanical properties of high density polyethylene--pennycress press cake composites. Proceedings of 71st ANTEC-Society of Plastics Engineers. 143:1986-1990.

Interpretive Summary: This research was conducted to test the feasibility of employing the residual press cake acquired from Pennycress oil pressings as a bio-filler in thermoplastics. Press cakes are unusual lignocellulosic sources since their chemical composition is much dissimilar to other lignocellulosic types. Particularly, press cakes contain high levels of protein (30-40%). Utiliizing lignocellulosic plastic composites (LPC) will generate useful products and employ less petroleum consumption by substitution with bio-based wood. We demonstrated that pennycress press cakes can be a suitable bio-filler with high density polyethylene to create unique LPC. Bio-materials made with these LPC can be substituted for a variety of plastic items derived from petroleum-based sources.

Technical Abstract: Pennycress press cake (PPC) is evaluated as a bio-based fiber reinforcement. PPC is a by-product of crop seed oil extraction. Composites with a high density polyethylene (HDPE) matrix are created by twin screw compounding of 25% by weight of PPC and either 0% or 5% by weight of maleated polyethylene (MAPE). Tensile, flexural, and impact properties are assessed from injection molded test specimens. An improved PPC bio-filler was produced by solvent treating PPC (STPPC). Composite blends composed of STPPC were superior to their PPC counterparts. Composites made with STPPC and MAPE had significantly improved tensile and flexural properties compared to neat HDPE.

Last Modified: 06/21/2017
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