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ARS Home » Southeast Area » New Orleans, Louisiana » Southern Regional Research Center » Cotton Fiber Bioscience and Utilization Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #405251

Research Project: Innovative Approaches for Value Added Cotton-Containing Nonwovens

Location: Cotton Fiber Bioscience and Utilization Research

Title: Unveiling the hidden value of cotton gin waste: natural synthesis and hosting of silver nanoparticles

item Nam, Sunghyun
item Easson, Michael
item Jordan, Jacobs
item He, Zhongqi
item ZHANG, HAILIN - Oklahoma State University
item Santiago Cintron, Michael
item Chang, Sechin

Submitted to: ACS Omega
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/14/2023
Publication Date: 8/9/2023
Citation: Nam, S., Easson, M., Jordan, J.H., He, Z., Zhang, H., Santiago Cintron, M., Chang, S. Unveiling the hidden value of cotton gin waste: natural synthesis and hosting of silver nanoparticles. ACS Omega. 2023:8(34):31281–31292.

Interpretive Summary: Cotton gin waste, one of the most abundant biomass resources, holds great potential for various material applications, including composites, packaging, and particleboard. In this study, we presented a simple yet efficient method to functionalize cotton gin waste based on its intrinsic ability to synthesize and host silver nanoparticles. The non-cellulosic constituents of cotton gin waste, such as hemicellulose and lignin, exhibited remarkable reducing properties, converting silver ions to silver atoms. The in situ synthesis of silver nanoparticles by powdered cotton gin waste also obviated the need for stabilizing agents typically employed to prevent nanoparticle aggregation during chemical synthesis. The internal formation and dispersion of silver nanoparticles within the cotton gin waste matrix were confirmed by the TEM images of its cross sectioned samples. The results demonstrated the potential value of cotton gin waste as a versatile and sustainable resource for the development of antimicrobial and antifungal materials, exploiting the powerful biocidal activities of silver nanoparticles.

Technical Abstract: Cotton gin waste presents a significant challenge in the cotton ginning industry due to its abundant generation and limited disposal options. In this study, we explored the potential of cotton gin waste as a naturally occurring source material that can synthesize and host silver nanoparticles. The noncellulosic constituents of cotton gin waste served as effective reducing agents, facilitating the conversion of silver ions into silver atoms, while its porous structure acted as a microreactor, enabling controlled particle growth. A simple heat treatment of cotton gin waste powder in an aqueous silver precursor solution actualized the in situ synthesis of silver nanoparticles, without the need for additional chemical agents. Remarkably, a high concentration of silver nanoparticles (14.7%) with an average diameter of approximately 27 nm was produced throughout the entire volume of cotton gin waste. Electron microscopic images of cross-sectioned cotton gin waste confirm the internal formation of nanoparticles. Rietveld refinement analysis of X-ray diffraction patterns showed that the majority of the nanoparticles possess a cubic silver crystal structure. Leveraging the well-known biocidal properties of silver nanoparticles, the resulting silver nanoparticle-filled cotton gin waste holds promise for novel antimicrobial and antifungal material applications.