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Title: Properties of cast films made of chayote (Sechium edule Sw.) tuber starch reinforced with cellulose nanocrystals

item TERRAZAS, JORGE - Instituto Nacional De Investigaciones Forestales Y Agropecuarias (INIFAP)
item Berrios, Jose
item Glenn, Gregory - Greg
item Imam, Syed
item Wood, Delilah - De
item BELLO-PEREZ, LUIS - Instituto Politécnico Nacional, Centro De Desarrollo De Productos Bioticos (CEPROBI)
item VARGAS, APOLONIO - Instituto Nacional De Investigaciones Forestales Y Agropecuarias (INIFAP)

Submitted to: Polymers and the Environment
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/3/2014
Publication Date: 6/24/2014
Citation: Terrazas, J.A., Berrios, J.D., Glenn, G.M., Imam, S.H., Wood, D.F., Bello-Perez, L.A., Vargas, A. 2014. Properties of cast films made of chayote (Sechium edule Sw.) tuber starch reinforced with cellulose nanocrystals. Polymers and the Environment. 23(1):30-37. doi: 10.1007/s10924-014-0652-0.

Interpretive Summary: Chayote is a minor food crop that is native to Mexico and central America. Greater use of Chayote tuber starch in bioproducts such as nanocomposite films could increase the value of Chayote as a commercial crop. Chayote starch film composites were made by incorporating cellulose nanocrystals. The nanocrystals improved the mechanical properties of the films that were tested at different temperatures and relative humidity. The results demonstrate that Chayote starch is a viable source of starch for composite film production.

Technical Abstract: In this study, cellulose (C) and cellulose nanocrystals (CN) were blended with chayote tuber (Sechium edule Sw.) starch (CS) in formulations cast into films. The films were conditioned at different storage temperatures and relative humidity (RH), and analyzed by mechanical tests, X-ray diffraction, thermogravimetric analyses and respirometry. Mechanical strength was highest in films that contain CN. Films containing CN that were stored at 33% and 77 % rh showed an increase in tensile strength. Films stored at -80 °C and 70 °C had different mechanical properties. X-Ray diffraction patterns did not indicate significant changes in recrystallization rates in films, indicating that RH and temperature conditions in this study did not affect this parameter. Thermogravimetric tests showed that RH and temperature did not affect the rate of mineralization. The rate of biodegradation increased with RH and temperature in both types of the films.