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Modification of Physio-Mechanical Properties of Chitosan-Based Films via Physical Treatment Approach

The premise of this work is the modification of the properties of chitosan-based film for possible use in food packaging applications. The biofilm was prepared via thermal and mechanical treatment through blending polymers with chitosan using Polyvinyl Alcohol (PVA) and loading different types of chemical agents, i.e., citric acid (CA), succinic acid (SA), and tetraethoxysilane (TEOS). The modification was carried out under high-speed homogenization at elevated temperature to induce physical cross-linkage of chitosan polymer chains without a catalyst. The findings showed that PVA improved the chitosan films’ Tensile strength (TS) and elongation at break (Eb). The presence of chemicals caused an increase in the film strength for all samples prepared, in which a 5% w/w of chemical in the optimum composition CS/PVA (75/25) provided the maximum strength, namely, 33.9 MPa, 44.0 MPa, and 41.9 MPa, for CA-5, SA-5, and TEOS-5, respectively. The chemical agents also increased the water contact angles for all tested films, indicating that they promoted hydrophobicity. The chemical structure analysis showed that, by incorporating three types of chemical agents into the CS/PVA blend films, no additional spectral bands were found, indicating that no covalent bonds were formed. The thermal properties showed enhancement in melting peak and degradation temperature of the blend films, compared to those without chemical agents at the optimum composition. The X-ray diffraction patterns exhibited that PVA led to an increasing crystallization tendency in the blend films. The morphological observation proved that no irregularities were detected in CS/PVA blend films, representing high compatibility with both polymers.

Publication date: 30/11/2022

Author: Endarto Yudo Wardhono

Reference: doi: 10.3390/polym14235216

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.