In situ production of nanocomposites of poly(vinyl alcohol) and cellulose nanofibrils from Gluconacetobacter bacteria: Effect of chemical crosslinking

Cristina Castro, Arja Vesterinen, Robin Zuluaga, Gloria Caro, Ilari Filpponen, Orlando J. Rojas, Galder Kortaberria, Piedad Gañán

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle in an indexed scientific journalpeer-review

    60 Scopus citations

    Abstract

    Nanocomposites of poly(vinyl alcohol) (PVA) reinforced with bacterial cellulose (BC) were bioproduced by Gluconacetobacter genus bacteria. BC was grown from a culture medium modified with water-soluble PVA to allow in situ assembly and production of a novel nanocomposite that displayed synergistic property contributions from the individual components. Chemical crosslinking with glyoxal was performed to avoid the loss of PVA matrix during purification steps and to improve the functional properties of composite films. Reinforcement with BC at 0.6, 6 and 14 wt% content yielded nanocomposites with excellent mechanical, thermal and dimensional properties as well as moisture stability. Young's modulus and strength at break increased markedly with the reinforcing BC: relative to the control sample (in absence of BC), increases of 15, 165 and 680 % were determined for nanocomposites with 0.6, 6 and 14 % BC loading, respectively. The corresponding increase in tensile strengths at yield were 1, 12 and 40 %, respectively. The results indicate an exceptional reinforcing effect by the three-dimensional network structure formed by the BC upon biosynthesis embedded in the PVA matrix and also suggest a large percolation within the matrix. Bonding (mainly hydrogen bonding) and chemical crosslinking between the reinforcing phase and matrix were the main contributions to the properties of the nanocomposite.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1745-1756
    Number of pages12
    JournalCellulose
    Volume21
    Issue number3
    DOIs
    StatePublished - Jun 2014

    Bibliographical note

    Funding Information:
    Acknowledgments The authors would like to acknowledge Colombia’s COLCIENCIAS and SENA for financial support as well as Prof. Janne Laine of the Department of Forest Products Technology of Aalto University (Finland).

    Keywords

    • Bacterial cellulose
    • Gluconacetobacter medellinensis
    • Mechanical properties
    • Nano composites
    • Poly(vinyl alcohol)
    • Thermal stability

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