Hydrophobic modification of cellulose nanocrystal via covalently grafting of castor oil.

Shang, W., Huang, J., Luo, H., Chang, P.R., Feng, J.-W., and Xie, G. (2013). "Hydrophobic modification of cellulose nanocrystal via covalently grafting of castor oil.", Cellulose, 20(1), pp. 179-190. doi : 10.1007/s10570-012-9795-0  Access to full text

Abstract

Hydrophobic cellulose nanocrystals (CNs) have been prepared by grafting isocyanate-terminated castor oil, a kind of natural vegetable oil, onto their surface. The existence of castor oil component in the modified cellulose nanocrystals was verified by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, solid-state 13C NMR spectra and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. At the same time, X-ray diffraction and transmission electron micrographs further proved that the crystalline structure and large aspect ratio of cellulose nanocrystals were essentially preserved after chemical grafting. Furthermore, the surface of modified cellulose nanocrystals appeared to be hydrophobic as indicated by contact angle measurements. The value of the polar component of surface energy decreased from 21.5 mJ/m2 to almost zero via grafting castor oil. These novel hydrophobic castor oil-grafted cellulose nanocrystals appear as valuable alternatives to formulate bionanocomposites with non-polar polymers for optimized performances.

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