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International Journal of Polymer Science
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 514951, 8 pages
Research Article

Manufacture of Partially Biodegradable Composite Materials Based on PLA-Tires Powder: Process and Characterization

1Centro de Investigación Científica de Yucatán, Unidad de Materiales, Calle 43, No. 130, Colonia Chuburná de Hidalgo, CP 97200 Mérida, YUC, Mexico
2Tokyo Metropolitan University, Mechanical Engineering Department, 1-1 Minami-Ohsawa, Hachioji-shi, Tokyo 192-0397, Japan
3Instituto Tecnológico Superior de Calkiní en el Estado de Campeche, Avenida Ah Canul SN por Carretera Federal, CP 24900 Calkiní, CAM, Mexico

Received 21 February 2013; Accepted 16 April 2013

Academic Editor: Osman Gencel

Copyright © 2013 Carlos Rolando Rios-Soberanis et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


This research work focuses on the processability and mechanical characterization of blends of polylactic acid (PLA) and tire (elastomeric part). Wasted tires used as filler in the PLA matrix were reduced by two different processes (thermal shock and pyrolysis) in order to acquire the solid residuals in powder to be characterized and compared. Elastomeric solids obtained from scraped tires were used as filler in the PLA matrix and mixed in a Brabender 60 cc mixer at different concentrations ranging from 0% to 60% of filler volume fraction. The blend was laminated, and then samples were obtained in order to undertake mechanical properties at tension and Izod impact tests. A fully detailed analysis on the solid powders by Differential Scanning Calorimeter (DSC), thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), infrared analysis (IR), and scanning electron microscopy analysis (SEM) identified them as a rich source of carbon. Blends were characterized thermally and mechanically showing a direct effect due to the tire nature (thermoset rubber) and concentration. Fracture mechanisms were also identified.