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Foamlike aerogel composites based on renewable xanthan gum (XG) and sodium montmorillonite clay (Na+-
MMT) have been prepared using an environmentally friendly freeze-drying process. Additionally, the biobased polysaccharide
agar was used to improve the properties of XG/clay aerogels. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy showed molecular
interactions between biopolymers and clay in the aerogel composites. A wide range of microstructures and mechanical properties
were obtained with a minimal variation in the density by changing the blended ratio of xanthan gum and agar, with particular
emphasis on the addition of 2.5% agar to XG/clay aerogels, which significantly enhanced the mechanical properties.
Thermogravimetric analysis revealed that clay improved the thermal stability of aerogels; however, the thermal stability of blends
of xanthan gum and agar worsened. Flammability was analyzed through cone calorimeter, which suggested xanthan gum/clay
aerogels possessed lower flammability than other typical foams. Clay served as a heat and mass transport, which significantly
improved the flame retardancy of the base aerogels.
CitationWang, L.; Schiraldi, D.; Sanchez, M. Foamlike xanthan gum/clay aerogel composites and tailoring properties by blending with agar. "Industrial & engineering chemistry research", 2014, vol. 53, núm. 18, p. 7680-7687.
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