Nanocellulose & Bio-nanocomposites
Nanofinishing of Cotton Textiles
Electrospinning of Biopolymers
Title of the sub-project:
Synthesis and Characterization of Nano-Cellulose and its Application in Biodegradable Polymer Composites to Enhance Their Performance
Name of the Component of the NAIP: Basic and Strategic Research in Frontier Areas of Agricultural Sciences
i] To prepare nano-cellulose (nanowhiskers and nanofibrils) from cotton and cotton linters by novel microbial, enzymatic and chemo-mechanical processes and their characterization.
ii] To prepare the polymer nano-cellulose composites and to evaluate their mechanical, barrier and biodegradability attributes.
2. Duration of the project : Four years
3. Total cost of the project : Rs. 445.02 lakhs
4. Operational area of the project : Nanotechnology
5. Overall work programme Microbial and enzymatic approach to the synthesis of cellulose nanowhiskers would provide highly crystalline, homogeneous and green chemistry approach to the preparation of these materials. MCC prepared from unspinnable short staple cotton will be subjected to controlled degradation by cellulase and its fractions (from Trichoderma sp.) to produce highly crystalline, cellulose nanowhiskers in solution. Enzymatic and chemical pre-treatment will be carried out for the reduction of energy consumption during nano-fibrillation. The structural and mechanistic aspects of the biochemical functions of the enzymes, both in native and immobilized form, will be studied using various physicochemical techniques. Immobilized enzyme / microbial system will be used in the membrane based reactor for hydrolysis of MCC and simultaneous removal of nano-cellulose. The biodegradable polymers like, starch and its derivatives, cellulose derivatives, carrageenans, polyhydroxyalkanoate and tamarind kernel powder will be used to prepare nanocomposites. The nano-cellulose can be mixed with biodegradable polymers to reduce the oxygen diffusion and to enhance the mechanical properties and to prepare an agricultural ground cover / mat having sufficient strength, barrier properties and be strong enough to be handled mechanically onto the soil while also having the sufficient degree of photo- and biodegradability. Also, the reduced oxygen permeability of nanocomposites will make it a better candidate for food packaging. These nanocomposites will be analyzed for its mechanical properties, rheological properties and barrier properties.
6. Duration of this project: 2008 to March 31, 2012
Five main innovations attempted under the project includes