Effects of Methylenediphenyl 4,4'-Diisocyanate and Maleic Anhydride as Coupling Agents on the Properties of Polylactic Acid/Polybutylene Succinate/Wood Flour Biocomposites by Reactive Extrusion

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Polylactic acid (PLA)/polybutylene succinate (PBS)/wood flour (WF) biocomposites were fabricated by in situ reactive extrusion with coupling agents. Methylenediphenyl 4,4'-diisocyanate (MDI) and maleic anhydride (MA) were used as coupling agents. To evaluate the effects of MDI and MA, various properties (i.e., interfacial adhesion, mechanical, thermal, and viscoelastic properties) were investigated. PLA/PBS/WF biocomposites without coupling agents revealed poor interfacial adhesion leading to deteriorated properties. However, the incorporation of MDI and/or MA into biocomposites showed high performances by increasing interfacial adhesion. For instance, the incorporation of MDI resulted in improved tensile, flexural, and impact strengths and an increase in tensile and flexural modulus was observed by the incorporation of MA. Specially, remarkably improved thermal stability was found in the PLA/PBS/WF biocomposites with 1 phr MDI and 1 phr MA. Also, the addition of MDI or MA into biocomposites increased the glass transition temperature and crystallinity, respectively. For viscoelastic property, the PLA/PBS/WF biocomposites with 1 phr MDI and 1 phr MA achieved significant enhancement in storage modulus compared to biocomposites without coupling agents. Therefore, the most balanced performances were evident in the PLA/PBS/WF biocomposites with the hybrid incorporation of small quantities of MDI and MA.

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Materials (Basel, Switzerland)

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