University of Oulu

Geng, S., Yao, K., Zhou, Q., Oksman, K. (2018) High-Strength, High-Toughness Aligned Polymer-Based Nanocomposite Reinforced with Ultralow Weight Fraction of Functionalized Nanocellulose. Biomacromolecules, 19 (10), 4075-4083. doi:10.1021/acs.biomac.8b01086

High-strength, high-toughness aligned polymer-based nanocomposite reinforced with ultralow weight fraction of functionalized nanocellulose

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Author: Geng, Shiyu1,2; Yao, Kun3,2; Zhou, Qi3,2;
Organizations: 1Division of Materials Science, Department of Engineering Sciences and Mathematics, Luleå University of Technology, Luleå SE-971 87, Sweden
2Wallenberg Wood Science Center, Department of Fiber and Polymer Technology, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm SE-100 44, Sweden
3Division of Glycoscience, Department of Chemistry, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, AlbaNova University Centre, Stockholm SE-106 91, Sweden
4Fibre and Particle Engineering, University of Oulu, Oulu FI-90014, Finland
Format: article
Version: accepted version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 11.4 MB)
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: American Chemical Society, 2018
Publish Date: 2019-08-21


Multifunctional lightweight, flexible, yet strong polymer-based nanocomposites are highly desired for specific applications. However, the control of orientation and dispersion of reinforcing nanoparticles and the optimization of the interfacial interaction still pose substantial challenges in nanocellulose-reinforced polymer composites. In this study, poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG)-grafted cellulose nanofibers have demonstrated much better dispersion in a poly(lactic acid) (PLA) matrix as compared to unmodified nanocellulose. Through a uniaxial drawing method, aligned PLA/nanocellulose nanocomposites with high strength, high toughness, and unique optical behavior can be obtained. With the incorporation of 0.1 wt % of the PEG-grafted cellulose nanofibers in PLA, the ultimate strength of the aligned nanocomposite reaches 343 MPa, which is significantly higher than that of other aligned PLA-based nanocomposites reported previously. Moreover, its ultimate strength and toughness are enhanced by 39% and 70%, respectively, as compared to the aligned nanocomposite reinforced with unmodified cellulose nanofibers. In addition, the aligned nanocomposite film is highly transparent and possesses an anisotropic light scattering effect, revealing its significant potential for optical applications.

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Series: Biomacromolecules
ISSN: 1525-7797
ISSN-E: 1526-4602
ISSN-L: 1525-7797
Volume: 19
Issue: 10
Pages: 4075 - 4083
DOI: 10.1021/acs.biomac.8b01086
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 216 Materials engineering
Funding: We thank [...] Knut och Alice Wallenberg Stiftelsen, TEKES FiDiPro Programme, Bio4Energy, SNS WOOD-PRO, and the Kempe Foundation for financial support.
Copyright information: This document is the Accepted Manuscript version of a Published Work that appeared in final form in Biomacromolecules, copyright © American Chemical Society after peer review and technical editing by the publisher. To access the final edited and published work see