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Controlling interfacial interactions in LDPE/flax fibre biocomposites by a combined chemical and radiation-induced grafting approach

Abstract : By combining chemical and gamma radiation treatments, we show that it is possible to improve the interfacial adhesion between natural fibres and a non-polar and non-reactive matrix such as low density polyethylene (LDPE), and the resulting mechanical performances of their biocomposites. To this aim, flax fibres are first functionalized with octadecylphospho-nic acid (ODPA) and the quantity, effective grafting and localization of ODPA molecules on flax fibres are characterized by ICP-AES, solid state 31 P NMR and SEM-EDX. ODPA molecules are effectively grafted onto flax fibres at a content of roughly 2.5 wt% and mostly localized at the fibre surface. Moreover, contact angle measurements as well as water sorption kinetics give evidence for increased hydrophobic and oleophilic character of ODPA treated fibres. Pellets of LDPE/flax fibre biocomposites obtained by melt extrusion are then submitted to gamma radiation and processed by injection moulding. Based on Soxhlet extraction experiments and SEM observations, it is shown that LDPE cross-linking rate induced by gamma radiation is locally enhanced at the fibre/ma-trix interface, suggesting that regio-selective cross-linking occurred between LDPE chains and the alkyl chain of ODPA grafted on flax fibre surface. Consequently , the uniaxial tensile performances of the biocomposites are enhanced by this combined chemical and radiation-induced grafting approach, especially their ultimate properties (up to 40% increase in the work of rupture). These results evidence an enhanced interfacial adhesion that is also supported by more cohesive interfacial failure and higher work of rupture through in-situ micro-mechanical tensile SEM experiments.
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Submitted on : Friday, May 29, 2020 - 3:37:00 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, September 16, 2020 - 1:31:46 PM

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Youssef El Moussi, Belkacem Otazaghine, Anne-Sophie Caro-Bretelle, Rodolphe Sonnier, Aurélie Taguet, et al.. Controlling interfacial interactions in LDPE/flax fibre biocomposites by a combined chemical and radiation-induced grafting approach. Cellulose, Springer Verlag, 2020, 27, pp.6333-6351. ⟨10.1007/s10570-020-03221-7⟩. ⟨hal-02632185⟩

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