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Sensors  2008 

Thermal Degradation, Mechanical Properties and Morphology of Wheat Straw Flour Filled Recycled Thermoplastic Composites

Keywords: Thermogravimetric analysis , differential scanning calorimetry , scanning electron microscope , polypropylene , high density polyethylene , coupling agent , composites

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Thermal behaviors of wheat straw flour (WF) filled thermoplastic compositeswere measured applying the thermogravimetric analysis and differential scanningcalorimetry. Morphology and mechanical properties were also studied using scanningelectron microscope and universal testing machine, respectively. Presence of WF inthermoplastic matrix reduced the degradation temperature of the composites. One for WFand one for thermoplastics, two main decomposition peaks were observed. Morphologicalstudy showed that addition of coupling agent improved the compatibility between WFs andthermoplastic. WFs were embedded into the thermoplastic matrix indicating improvedadhesion. However, the bonding was not perfect because some debonding can also be seenon the interface of WFs and thermoplastic matrix. In the case of mechanical properties ofWF filled recycled thermoplastic, HDPE and PP based composites provided similar tensileand flexural properties. The addition of coupling agents improved the properties ofthermoplastic composites. MAPE coupling agents performed better in HDPE while MAPPcoupling agents were superior in PP based composites. The composites produced with thecombination of 50-percent mixture of recycled HDPE and PP performed similar with theuse of both coupling agents. All produced composites provided flexural properties requiredby the ASTM standard for polyolefin-based plastic lumber decking boards.


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