Chapter 11 - Reactive Extrusion for Thermoplastic Starch-Polymer Blends
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AbstractThis chapter briefly reviews reactive extrusion developments for thermoplastic starch polymers. Then, a case study for thermoplastic starch polymer/biopolyester nanocomposite blend will be examined. In this example, maleic anhydride and dicumyl peroxide were used as cross-linking agent and initiator, respectively, for blending starch and a biodegradable synthetic aliphatic polyester using reactive extrusion. Blends were characterized using dynamic mechanical and thermal analysis. Optical micrographs of the blends revealed that in the optimized blend, starch was evenly dispersed in the polymer matrix. Optimized blends exhibited better tensile properties than the uncompatibilized blends. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy supported the proposed structure for the starch-polyester complex. Variation in the compositions of cross-linking agent and initiator had an impact on the properties and color of the blends.

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