Research of the Influence of the Ultrasonic Treatment on the Melts of the Polymeric Compositions for the Creation of Packaging Materials with Antimicrobial Properties and Biodegrability
Ensuring the microbiological safety of food products is a problem of current interest. The use of antimicrobial packaging materials is a way of solving the problem. When developing packaging materials, it is advisable to use a modern approach based on the creation of biodegradable materials. The difficulty in the selection of the polymer compositions&rsquo; components lies in solving the dilemma of the joint introduction and processing of antimicrobial and biodegradable agents. The studies of the ultrasound treatment on the melts of polymer mixtures showed an increase in the dispersion process of the components of the mixture. In this regard, this work aimed to study the effect of the ultrasonic treatment on the melts of polymer compositions containing thermoplastic starch and birch bark extract (BBE). In the work, the properties of PE-based packaging materials with various BBE concentrations obtained with ultrasonic treatment of melts on a laboratory extruder were studied. Biodegradable polymer compositions containing thermoplastic starch and BBE, obtained with the use of the ultrasonic treatment during extrusion, were investigated. The methods for studying rheological, physic-mechanical, antimicrobial properties and sanitary chemical indicators of materials were used in the article. It was found that ultrasonic treatment increases the melt flow and contributes to the production of materials with the uniform distribution of additives. The BBE content from 1.0% and higher in the contents of the material provides antimicrobial properties. When studying the permeability of oxygen and water vapor of the polymer compositions based on PE and BBE, it was found that the introduction of a filler increases vapor permeability by about 8&ndash;12% compared with control samples. The optimal concentration of BBE in polyethylene compositions containing thermoplastic starch was determined. The extension of the shelf life of the food product during storage in the developed material was established.