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Editor in Chief: RAFFAELLO COSSU

UTILIZATION OF RECYCLED POLYPROPYLENE, CELLULOSE AND NEWSPRINT FIBRES FOR PRODUCTION OF GREEN COMPOSITES

  • Vesna Žepič Bogataj - Slovenian Tool and Die Development Centre, TECOS, Slovenia
  • Peter Fajs - Slovenian Tool and Die Development Centre, TECOS, Slovenia
  • Carolina Peñalva - AITIIP Centro Tecnológico, Spain
  • Marko Omahen - OMAPLAST, Slovenia
  • Matjaž Čop - ADRIA Mobil, Slovenia
  • Ari Henttonen - ECOPULP Finland Oy, Finland

DOI 10.31025/2611-4135/2019.13857

Released under CC BY-NC-ND

Copyright: © 2019 CISA Publisher

Editorial History

  • Received: 01 Jul 2019
  • Revised: 18 Sep 2019
  • Accepted: 20 Sep 2019
  • Available online: 26 Sep 2019

Abstract

This work investigates the feasibility of using the recycled polypropylene (rPP), cellulose (CF) and newsprint (NP) fibres in polyolefin reinforced composites. Recycled PP filled with 40 wt.% of cellulose (rPP/CF) or newsprint (rPP/NP), with the addition of impact modifier (IM) and compatibilizing agent (CA), have been prepared with extrusion melting and injection moulding. Melting and crystallization behaviour of plain matrix and composites were measured by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC). Morphological and mechanical properties were also studied using scanning electron microscope (SEM) and tensile testing, respectively. Thermal stability of composites was similar to neat rPP for both types of the filler used. Though, the crystallinity was progressively decreased with the addition of CF or NP. The DSC further revealed an occurrence of the two distinct melting transitions, meaning that the examined materials were not based on pure polypropylene (PP), but are rather blends of high-density polyethylene (HDPE) and PP, what has been confirmed also by the Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). The largest single source of contaminations in recycled PP comes from HDPE since both polymers are identified by a similar density and can be accidentally mixed during the conventional physical separation process. Composites reinforced with CF have shown better mechanical performances than those based on reclaimed NP fibres, what can be attributed to the initial fibre quality. Tensile strength of the composites filled with CF and NP fibres was 36 MPa and 29 MPa, respectively, in disparity to 23 MPa measured for neat rPP. The fibre addition further resulted in substantial increase in Young modulus of the composites. The addition of CF and NP fibres lead to an improved modulus of elasticity by 16 and 47%, respectively. Waste paper in the form of recovered cellulose or reclaimed newsprint fibre can thus meet all the technical requirements to become an alternative to inorganic fillers in thermoplastic composites.

Keywords


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