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Bio-Based Thermoplastic Vulcanizate (TPV) Formed by Dynamical Cross-Linking and Mixing Method

Published By : IndustryARC | Published On : 2015-10-01
Thermoplastic elastomers (TPEs) are a great technological development since they pose less threat to the environment unlike conventional elastomers. Thermoplastic vulcanizate (TPVs) are special class of TPEs, consist of a thermoplastic as matrix and a cross-linked elastomer as the disseminated phase. Since the bio-based TPVs produce low carbon emission and are biodegradable in nature, the synthesis of these are being encouraged in majority of the countries. At present they are considered as sustainable substitutes to conventional petroleum based polymers since these are derived from renewable resources such as starch-based polymers, polylactide (PLA), polyhydroxyalkanoates(PHAs), cellulose-based polymers and soy based polymers.

The bio-based TPVs are prepared using different blends of bio-based polyester elastomer (BPE) and PLAby in-situ dynamical crosslinking and mixing method.Here BPE is used as the rubber matrix and PLA is used as plastic matrix. The BPE and PLA are considered due to their potential compatibility. Different techniques such as torque measurements, degree of crosslinking measurements, transmission electron microscopy (TEM), differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), and rheological properties were used to investigate the effect of blending ratio on the dynamic crosslinking and micromorphology of these TPVs.

During dynamical cross-linking and mixing there is a phase inversion as cross-linked BPE particles are dispersed in the PLA continuous phase. This resulted in an average particle size ranging from 1 to 4 µm.TPVs have numerousadvantages over the traditional thermoset elastomers. Theyillustrate satisfactory elasticity, excellent mechanical properties after reinforcement, elastic recovery and good biocompatibility.There are a wide range of applications of these TPVs in automobiles, buildings and electronic industries. Now a days globally TPV is produced at a t rate of 450 000 tons per annum. Even though earlier TPVs are blends of various petroleum products such as ethylene propylene diene monomer rubber (EPDM)/polypropylene (PP) blend, acrylonitrile–butadiene rubber (NBR)/PP blend, NBR/polyethylene (PE) blend, EPDM/PE blend, EPDM/nylon-6 blend, acrylate rubber (ACM)/nylon-6 blend, and butyl rubber (IIR)/polyamide blend, the trend has recently shifted to bio based TPVs due to growing environmental concerns, climate change and depletion in fossil fuels.

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