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Multifunctional montmorillonite/polyhydroxy butyrate composites using surfactant structure modulation strategy for packaging applications

The structural modification of montmorillonite affects the properties of composite materials.The biodegradable materials for the packaging sector have attracted much attention as they can effectively reduce the reliance on fossil fuel products. The introduction of two?dimensional layered fillers is readily available for packaging materials to minimize costs while enhancing performance. However, few studies have investigated the molecular structure changes of OMMT to further modulate the comprehensive performance of polyhydroxy butyrate (PHB) materials. To fill this gap, we innovatively modified the surfactant's structure to regulate the embedding and dispersion of montmorillonite (OMMT) and interfacial bonding with the substrate, thus further examining the material's antibacterial and degrading properties and discussing mechanisms for the first time. The prepared C18M7@PHB materials present enhanced tensile strength (180%) and high thermal stability, excellent antimicrobial properties compared to the unmodified one. Both the water vapor and oxygen permeabilities of composites have decreased by 87% and 55%, respectively. Moreover, it is found that the composites exhibit various degradation cycles mainly depending on active agent chain length. This work lays a solid foundation for multifunctional packaging materials based on fillers with two?dimensional layered structures.HighlightsDetermining the ideal film's bulk ratio and active agent structure.Optimizing the film's excellent tensile strength and antimicrobial properties.Significantly blocking the infiltration of water vapor and oxygen.Identifying the film's filler's degradation behavior and barrier mechanism.

Publication date: 22/03/2024

Polymer Composites


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.