Technological watch

Chitin Nanocomposite Based on Plasticized Poly(lactic acid)/Poly(3-hydroxybutyrate) (PLA/PHB) Blends as Fully Biodegradable Packaging Materials

Fully bio-based poly(lactic acid) (PLA) and poly(3-hydroxybutyrate) (PHB) blends plasticized with tributyrin (TB), and their nanocomposite based on chitin nanoparticles (ChNPs) was developed using melt mixing followed by a compression molding process. The combination of PHB and ChNPs had an impact on the crystallinity of the plasticized PLA matrix, thus improving its oxygen and carbon dioxide barrier properties as well as displaying a UV light-blocking effect. The addition of 2 wt% of ChNP induced an improvement on the initial thermal degradation temperature and the overall migration behavior of blends, which had been compromised by the presence of TB. All processed materials were fully disintegrated under composting conditions, suggesting their potential application as fully biodegradable packaging materials.

Publication date: 03/08/2022

Author: Magdalena L. Iglesias-Montes

Reference: doi: 10.3390/polym14153177

MDPI (polymers)


This project has received funding from the Bio Based Industries Joint Undertaking under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 837761.