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Journal of Materials
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 365380, 7 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/365380
Research Article

Sago Starch-Mixed Low-Density Polyethylene Biodegradable Polymer: Synthesis and Characterization

1University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus, 43500 Semenyih, Selangor, Malaysia
2Malaysian Nuclear Agency, 43000 Kajang, Selangor, Malaysia

Received 17 January 2013; Revised 11 June 2013; Accepted 12 June 2013

Academic Editor: Guoping Chen

Copyright © 2013 Md Enamul Hoque 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.

Abstract

This research focuses on synthesis and characterization of sago starch-mixed LDPE biodegradable polymer. Firstly, the effect of variation of starch content on mechanical property (elongation at break and Young’s modulus) and biodegradability of the polymer was studied. The LDPE was combined with 10%, 30%, 50%, and 70% of sago for this study. Then how the cross-linking with trimethylolpropane triacrylate (TMPTA) and electron beam (EB) irradiation influence the mechanical and thermal properties of the polymer was investigated. In the 2nd study, to avoid overwhelming of data LDPE polymer was incorporated with only 50% of starch. The starch content had direct influence on mechanical property and biodegradability of the polymer. The elongation at break decreased with increase of starch content, while Young’s modulus and mass loss (i.e., degradation) were found to increase with increase of starch content. Increase of cross-linker (TMPTA) and EB doses also resulted in increased Young’s modulus of the polymer. However, both cross-linking and EB irradiation processes rendered lowering of polymer’s melting temperature. In conclusion, starch content and modification processes play significant roles in controlling mechanical, thermal, and degradation properties of the starch-mixed LDPE synthetic polymer, thus providing the opportunity to modulate the polymer properties for tailored applications.