Flexural properties and mean intrinsic flexural strength of old newspaper reinforced polypropylene composites
PublisherMultidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute (MDPI)
Rights accessOpen Access
Newspapers have a limited lifespan, and therefore represent a focus of used and disposed paper. While these refuses have a considerable value and can be easily recycled, a considerable fraction ends in landfill. The authors show the possibility of adding value to used newspaper and enlarge its value chain. Old newspaper incorporates a high amount of wood fibers able to be used as reinforcement. On the other hand, this material also incorporates inks and other components inherent to newspaper production. In this work, the authors disintegrate old newspaper to recover and individualize wood fibers. A morphological analysis showed that the recovered fibers had aspect ratios higher than 10, revealing, a priori, their strengthening capabilities. Thereupon, these fibers were compounded with polypropylene at different contents, ranging from 20% to 50% w/w. It is well known that wood fibers are hydrophilic, while polyolefin are hydrophobic. This is a drawback to obtaining strong interfaces. Thus, two sets of composites were produced, with and without a coupling agent. The results showed that uncoupled composites increased the flexural strength of the matrix but reached an equilibrium point from which adding more reinforcement did not changer the flexural strength. On the other hand, the coupled composites showed a linear increase of the flexural strength against the reinforcement content. The flexural moduli of the coupled and uncoupled composites were very similar and evolved linearly with the reinforcement content.
CitationTarrés, Q. [et al.]. Flexural properties and mean intrinsic flexural strength of old newspaper reinforced polypropylene composites. "Polymers", 26 Juliol 2019, vol. 11, núm. 8, article 1244, p. 1-13.