Polyethylene/Bacterial-Cellulose Biocomposite Synthesized via In Situ Polymerization with Zirconocene/MMAO Catalyst
In this study, the polyethylene filled celluloses regarded as biocomposites was produced via in situ polymerization with zirconocene/MMAO catalyst. Three types of celluloses including microcrystalline cellulose (MCC), bacterial cellulose prepared from pineapple shell extract (BCP), and bacterial cellulose prepared from coconut (BCC) were used as fillers and also catalytic support in the polymerization system. It was found that the presence of cellulose fillers slightly decreased catalytic activity of the polymerization system, but it was still higher compared with that of other natural fillers such as coir dust. This is caused by the lower impurity of cellulose. The MCC provided the highest catalytic activity among all cellulose fillers. The obtained biocomposites were characterized with different techniques including scanning electron microscope (SEM) and thermal gravimetric analysis (TGA). It was observed that all obtained biocomposites exhibited good morphology compared with the neat polyethylene. Thermal stability of the polymers was improved with the cellulose fillers.