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Physical, Mechanical, and Degradability Properties of Chemically Treated Jute Fiber Reinforced Biodegradable Nanocomposites

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Physical, Mechanical, and Degradability Properties of Chemically Treated Jute Fiber Reinforced Biodegradable Nanocomposites
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  PROOF COPY [MATS-11-1039] 003104JYT M. K. Hossain 1 e-mail: hossainm@mytu.tuskegee.edu M. W. DewanM. V. HosurS. Jeelani Center for Advanced Materials,Tuskegee University,Tuskegee, AL 36088 Physical, Mechanical, and 1  Degradability Properties of 2  Chemically Treated Jute Fiber 3  Reinforced Biodegradable 4  Nanocomposites 5 6   Biodegradable composites were fabricated using chemically treated woven jute fiber, abiodegradable polymer (biopol), and 2–4 wt. % montmorillonite K10 nanoclay by com- pression molding process. Physical, mechanical, and biodegradability properties of thesecomposites were evaluated in this study. Morphology of modified surfaces of jute fabricsexamined using scanning electron microscopy and Fourier transform infrared spectros-copy revealed improved surfaces for better adhesion with matrix. Nanoclay infused sam- ples demonstrated lower moisture and water absorption compared with treated jute fiber biopol composites and untreated jute fiber biopol composites. The effect of moistureabsorption on flexural properties and degradability on the dynamic mechanical proper-ties was also studied. Flexural properties were found to degrade with moisture absorp-tion, and the percentage reduction was lower in nanoclay infused samples compared withsamples without nanoclay. Storage modulus decreased with biodegradation and rate of decrease was lower in nanoclay infused specimens.  [DOI: 10.1115/1.4004690]  Keywords: surface modification, compression molding, biodegradable composite 7  1 Introduction 8  Composite materials from man-made fibers, such as glass fiber  9  and carbon fiber, are already available for consumer and industrial 10  uses. Manufacturing of synthetic fiber composites not only con- 11  sume huge energy but also their disposal at the end of their life 12  cycle is very difficult since there is virtually no recycling option. 13  Stringent environmental legislation and consumer awareness have 14  forced industries to support long term sustainable growth and de- 15  velop new technology based on renewable feedstock that are inde- 16  pendent of fossil fuels. Industrial crops grown for fiber have the 17  potential to supply enough renewable biomass for various bio- 18  products including composites. Lignocellulosic biofibers derived 19  from leaf, bast, fruit, grass, or cane contribute to the strength of  20  bio as well as synthetic polymer composites in various applica- 21  tions [1]. Cellulose fibers possess specific strength and stiffness 22  that are comparable to those of glass fibers [2,3]. However, hydro- 23  philic nature and uneven thickness, weak interfacial strength 24  between fiber and matrix, and limited temperature applications are 25  the main disadvantages of lignocellulosic fibers. To improve inter- 26  facial strength of these fibers, various chemical process, such as 27  silane treatment [4], alkali treatment [5,6], acetylation [7], and 28  coupling agents, [8] are used. Several researchers have performed 29  chemical treatment to reduce their hydrophilicity and improve 30  mechanical properties of natural fiber reinforced polymer compo- 31  sites [9 – 11]. Various research groups have used biodegradable 32  polymers, such as bionolle, biopol, poly(3-hydroxybutyrate) 33  (PHB), and polylactic acid [7], in natural fiber reinforced com- 34  posites. However, PHB and biopol can be considered as true 35  biopolymers because they are synthesized by bacteria as macro- 36 molecules. Other biodegradable polymers are synthetic or semi- 37 synthetic [12] in nature. The homopolymer PHB is brittle and has 38 narrow processability window compared with conventional plas- 39 tics. To overcome these drawbacks, 3-hydroxyvalerates are added 40 with PHB to prepare copolymers. PHB and its copolymers are 41 highly crystalline and have a melting point, strength, and modulus 42 comparable to those of isotactic polypropylene [13]. Montmoril- 43 lonite nanoclay is surface treated with long chain alkyl ammo- 44 nium ions through ion exchange reaction to make it compatible 45 with hydrophilic polymer [14,15]. Moisture barrier, flammability 46 resistance, thermal, and mechanical properties of polymeric com- 47 posites can be improved by adding a small amount of nanoclay as 48 filler particles [16]. Nanoclay agglomerates into the composites 49 due to improper dispersion. A stabilization process is used to 50 remove larger clay agglomerates in the nanoclay suspension [17]. 51 Various research groups have worked on untreated/treated jute 52 fiber reinforced biocomposites produced by various processing 53 methods and analyzed their suitability for structural applications 54 [18 – 23]. Several researchers also investigated the effect of nano- 55 particles in biocomposites and observed better tensile and flexural 56 properties compared with those of conventional ones [17]. There 57 have been a limited number of studies on the physical, mechani- 58 cal, and biodegradable responses of surface modified jute-based 59 composites. Moreover, no study has been reported in the open lit- 60 erature on surface modified jute-based nanocomposites that are 61 100% biodegradable. Hence, the objective of this study is to de- 62 velop 100% biodegradable jute-based nanocomposites and evalu- 63 ate their physical, mechanical, and biodegradable properties for  64 structural applications. 65 In this study, jute fibers were chemically treated with a four- 66 step process for better interfacial adhesion with matrix. Treated 67 fibers were evaluated by analyzing Fourier transform infrared 68 spectroscopy (FTIR) spectra and scanning electron microscope 69 (SEM) micrographs. 2%, 3%, and 4% nanoclay was infused by so- 70 lution intercalation techniques. Treated/untreated jute fiber-biopol 1 Corresponding author.Contributed by the Materials Division of ASME for publication in the J OURNAL OF E NGINEERING  M ATERIALS AND  T ECHNOLOGY . Manuscript received March 9, 2011; finalmanuscript received July 13, 2011; published online xx xx, xxxx. Assoc. Editor:Mrinal Saha. J_ID: JYT DOI: 10.1115/1.4004690 Date: 1-August-11 Stage: Page: 1 Total Pages: 8ID:  sambasivamt  Time: 11:47 I Path: Q:/3b2/JYT#/Vol00000/110027/APPFile/AI-JYT#110027 Journal of Engineering Materials and Technology  MONTH 2011, Vol. 00  / 000000-1Copyright V C  2011 by ASME  PROOF COPY [MATS-11-1039] 003104JYT 71  composites were produced with/without nanoclay using the com- 72  pression molding process. Performance of these composite sam- 73  ples was studied through moisture absorption, flexure, water  74  absorption, degradation, and DMA AQ1  tests. 75  2 Experimental 76  2.1 Materials.  Poly (3-hydroxybutyrate–co-3-hydroxyvaler- 77  ate—12%) - biopolymer granule (Biopol—Goodfellow Corpora- 78  tion), hessian jute fabrics (Natural Color Burlap, Material: 100% 79  Jute, Width: 47", 11 Oz—OnlineFabricStore.net), and Montmoril- 80  lonite K10 nanoclay (surface area: 220–270 m 2  /g—Sigma- 81  Aldrich) were used as matrix, reinforcement, and nanofillers in 82  this study. Alcojet detergent, 50% ethanol solution, 50% NaOH 83  solution, and 99% acetic acid solution were used for chemical 84  treatments, and 99% anhydrous chloroform were used to dissolve 85  biopol and infuse nanoclay. Density, tensile strength, tensile mod- 86  ulus, and elongation at break of biopol are 1.25 g/cm 3 , 23 MPa, 87  0.5 GPa and 35%, respectively. Density, tensile strength, modu- 88  lus, water absorption, and elongation at break of jute fibers are 1.4 89  g/cm 3 , 450–550 MPa, 0.3–0.78 GPa, 13% and 0.8–2%, respec- 90  tively. These properties are obtained from the respective manufac- 91  turer technical data sheet. 92  2.2 Surface Modification.  Detergent washing, dewaxing, al- 93  kali treatment, and soaking with acetic acid were performed on 94  hydrophilic jute fibers to improve interfacial bonding with hydro- 95  phobic polymer, biopol. Dirt was removed from fibers by deter- 96  gent washing keeping fibers into 5% detergent solutions at 30   C 97  for 1 h and washing them subsequently with water. After drying, 98  pectin was removed from these detergent washed fibers by keep- 99  ing them into 5% ethanol solution at 30   C for 1 h followed by 100  washing with water and drying. Dewaxed fibers were kept into 101  5% NaOH solution at 30   C for 2 h and washed with distilled 102  water to remove lignins and hemicelluloses. Alkali treatment 103  resulted in a large number of    OH group accessible on surfaces 104  of fibers [10]. It also broke down fiber bundles into single fibers 105  and increased effective surface area available for interacting with 106  matrix. Alkali treated fibers were soaked with distilled water-ace- 107  tic acid (2%) solution for 1 h, followed by washing with distilled 108  water and drying. Acetic acid neutralized sodium ions that were 109  attached to fibers during alkali treatment and reacted with   OH 110  group on fiber surfaces to convert hydrophilic surfaces of fibers 111  into hydrophobic for better adhesion with biopol. 112  2.3 Composite Fabrication.  Jute-biopol composites were 113  fabricated by the compression molding process. Biopol pellets 114  were dissolved into chloroform at 1:8 ratio at room temperature 115  and magnetically stirred for 4 h to prepare a homogeneous solu- 116  tion. In case of nanophased composites, nanoclay was infused into 117  biopol using solution intercalation techniques [24]. Biopol pellets 118  were dissolved into chloroform with/without nanoclay and stirred 119  for 6 h to prepare a homogeneous mixture. The solution was then 120  poured into a mold to prepare about 1.5 mm thick film and dried 121  in a vacuum oven at 60   C for about 4 h to remove choloroform. 122  Dried thick films were then placed in the hot press, and 13.34 kN 123  force was applied at 166   C for 10 min to prepare 0.50 mm thick 124  films. Biopol films and jute fabrics were stacked like a sandwich 125  and composites were manufactured using compression molding 126  process applying 13.34 kN force at 166   C for 15 min. 127  2.4 Experimental Procedure.  The FTIR spectra of parent 128  and surface treated jute fibers were recorded using Nicolet 6700 129  DX IR spectrophotometer. FTIR spectra were used to find the 130  functional groups present both above and just below the top mo- 131  lecular layer of flat surface [25]. The background was taken after  132  every 60 min and each spectrum was recorded by co-adding 32 133  scans at 4 cm  1 resolution in the 4000–600 cm  1 range. Three 134  samples from each batch were tested for this test. 135 Morphological characterization of the treated and untreated 136 fibers and fracture surface of JBC after flexure test was conducted 137 using a JEOL JSM-5800 SEM. Before placing the samples into 138 machines, the specimens were coated with gold palladium using a 139 sputtering machine to prevent charging. All micrographs were 140 taken at 2000 magnification. Before and after degradation test, op- 141 tical micrographs of the composites surface were investigated 142 using Olympus DP72 digital microscope camera. 143 Moisture absorption tests of jute-biopol composites were con- 144 ducted according to the ASTM D2495-07 standard. Five rectangu- 145 lar samples from each category (dimension: 100  13  3 mm) 146 were dried in a vacuum oven at 105   C for 5 h, and dry weight 147 (W 0 ) was taken after cooling. To make a humid environment, 148 some distilled water was placed into a desiccator and after 12 h, 149 the inside humidity was found to be 98%. Dry samples were then 150 kept on a platform above water in the desiccator. Sample weights 151 (W) were measured after 7, 14, 20, 30, and 60 days conditioning 152 using a precision balance having an accuracy of 0.0001 gm. Mois- 153 ture content (M) was calculated byM ð % Þ ¼ ðð W    W 0 Þ = W 0 Þ   100 (1) 154 Flexural properties of jute-biopol composites before and after  155 moisture absorption test were evaluated using Zwick Roell testing 156 unit according to the ASTM D790-02 standard under displace- 157 ment control mode at a crosshead speed of 2.0 mm/min. Five sam- 158 ples from each category were tested to determine the average 159 result. 160 In order to measure water absorption of jute biopol composites, 161 five rectangular specimens from each category were prepared hav- 162 ing 55 mm  13 mm  3.5 mm dimensions. Specimens were dried 163 in an oven at 105   C for 2 h, cooled in a desiccators, and immedi- 164 ately weighed (W 0 ). Dried samples were then immersed in dis- 165 tilled water according to the ASTM D 570-99 standard for 2 h and 166 24 h. After removing the samples, excess water on the surface of  167 the specimen was removed using dry cloth. Samples were 168 weighed again (W). The water absorption (M w ) of each specimen 169 was calculated by using the following equation:M w ð % Þ ¼ ðð W    W 0 Þ = W 0 Þ   100 (2) 170 Biodegradability of the JBC was determined by measuring 171 weight loss of the specimen buried into natural soil obtained from 172 the Tuskegee University campus. Soil was taken from the ground 173 surface. All inert materials were removed to obtain a homogene- 174 ous mass. The measured  p H was 7.0. The soil was placed into a 175 plastic pot up to a thickness of about 3 cm. Five specimens from 176 each category were dried in a vacuum oven at 60   C for 5 h and 177 weighted (W 0 ) using a precision balance having a accuracy of  178 0.0001 gm. Then the specimens were buried in the pots to a depth 179 of 1 cm. Water was sprayed once a day to sustain the moisture. 180 The samples were taken out from the soil after 20, 30, 60, and 181 90 days, washed with distilled water, dried in a vacuum oven at 182 60   C for 5 h and weighed (W). The weight loss (W 1 ) was calcu- 183 lated by using the following equation:W 1 ð % Þ ¼ ðð W 0    W Þ = W 0 Þ   100 (3) 184 Storage modulus (  E 0 ), loss modulus (  E 00 ), and tan delta (tan  d ) 185 (the ratio of   E 00 and  E 0 ) of the samples were obtained from DMA 186 tests under three point bending mode at a heating rate of 5   C/min 187 from 30 to 120   C with an oscillation frequency of 1 Hz and an 188 amplitude of 15  l m according to the ASTM D4065-01 standard. 189 Three samples from each category were tested. 190 3 Results and Discussions 191 The effect of surface modification on jute fibers are illustrated 192 in the FTIR spectra (Fig. 1( a )). A broad absorption band in the J_ID: JYT DOI: 10.1115/1.4004690 Date: 1-August-11 Stage: Page: 2 Total Pages: 8ID:  sambasivamt  Time: 11:47 I Path: Q:/3b2/JYT#/Vol00000/110027/APPFile/AI-JYT#110027 000000-2 /   Vol. 00, MONTH 2011  Transactions of the ASME  PROOF COPY [MATS-11-1039] 003104JYT 193  3200–3600 cm  1 region can be seen in all spectra. They indicate 194  the characteristic of O-H stretching vibration [26]. The alkali 195  treatment resulted in more O-H groups accessible on the fiber sur- 196  face for reaction with the acetic acid. This resulted in the decrease 197  of the O-H stretching vibration. The C-H stretching vibration of  198  methyl and methylene groups in cellulose and hemicelluloses was 199  observed near wave number 2950 cm  1 [27]. This was also found 200  to decrease due to the surface modification. Hemicelluloses are 201  the main concern in surface modification. The absorption band 202 appeared near the 1730 cm  1 wave number for the C ¼ O stretch- 203 ing vibration of the carboxylic acid and ester components of hemi- 204 celluloses. Hemicelluloses were dissolved in the alkali solution 205 and no peaks was observed in the alkali treated fibers for the 206 C ¼ O stretching vibration. The absorption band near 1464 cm  1 207 is due to lignin [16]. This peak was found to weaken after the 208 chemical treatment which indicated removal of lignin from the 209 treated fibers. As the exposure time of fibers in the sodium hy- 210 droxide solution increases, the percentage of cellulose content Fig. 1 ( a  ) FTIR spectra and ( b  ) SEM micrographs of treated and untreated jute fibers J_ID: JYT DOI: 10.1115/1.4004690 Date: 1-August-11 Stage: Page: 3 Total Pages: 8ID:  sambasivamt  Time: 11:47 I Path: Q:/3b2/JYT#/Vol00000/110027/APPFile/AI-JYT#110027 Journal of Engineering Materials and Technology  MONTH 2011, Vol. 00  / 000000-3  PROOF COPY [MATS-11-1039] 003104JYT 211  increases. However, sodium hydroxide has a direct effect on the 212  mechanical properties of the fibers. Fibers exposed to the 5% so- 213  dium hydroxide solution for 2 h and washed with the 2% acetic 214  acid solution for 1 h showed optimum results for the surface 215  modification. 216  Surfaces of treated and untreated fibers were investigated using 217  SEM micrographs (Fig. 1( b )) revealed relatively rougher surfaces 218  in treated fibers compared with untreated ones. Removal of sur- 219  face impurities, noncellulosic substances, inorganic materials, and 220  waxes resulted in cleaner and rougher surfaces in treated fibers. 221  Chemical treatments converted the mesh-like structure of fibers to 222  clean and rough single fibers which provided higher strength to 223  fibers. This observation was reported elsewhere [28]. Rougher sur- 224  face and defibrillation were also attributed to better interaction of  225  fibers with matrix for larger surface area. 226  Table 1 shows the percentage of moisture absorbed by the jute 227  biopol composites over time. Natural fibers have a tendency to 228  absorb moisture when they are placed in a humid area weakening 229  the composites. Moisture absorption by conventional and nano- 230  phased composites was almost same during initial seven-day con- 231  ditioning period. As the conditioning time was increased, the 232 amount of absorbed moisture was increased. After 20 days, the 233 samples almost saturated and there was no significant change in 234 the moisture absorption even after conditioning for 30 and 60 235 days. The amount of moisture absorbed by the untreated jute fiber  236 biopol composites (UTJBC) was higher compared with the treated 237  jute fiber biopol composites (TJBC) and nanoclay infused TJBC 238 due to the presence of micro voids in the UTJBC for improper  239 interaction between fiber and matrix. Nanoclay infused samples 240 showed lower moisture absorption, because nanoparticles acted as 241 a moisture barrier. 242 Data found from flexural tests of untreated and treated jute-bio- 243 pol composites are shown in Fig. 2( a ). Surface modified fibers 244 resulted in better adhesion with the matrix. As a result, better flex- 245 ural properties were found in TJBC compared with UTJBC with- 246 out nanoclay. Nanophased TJBC had resulted in higher strength 247 and modulus. However, nanoclay infused samples exhibited 248 reduced strain to failure making nanocomposites more brittle. 249 Nanoparticles might exfoliate/intercalate into composites and 250 results in greater interfacial area for a better interaction with poly- 251 mers. Biopol strongly interacts with nanoclay resulting in higher  252 strength and modulus [16]. It was reported that higher fiber vol- 253 ume fraction increases the modulus and decreases the elongation 254 at break of biopol composites. However, higher fiber volume frac- 255 tion has no effect on the strength of the composites [13]. SEM 256 micrographs of JBC after flexure test are shown in Fig 3. In case 257 of UTJBC, fiber matrix debonding occurred due to improper  258 bonding between the fiber and the matrix. In TJBC, fiber matrix 259 fracture occurred due to debonding and fiber failure. Nanoclay 260 infused composites showed matrix cracking as well as fiber fail- 261 ure. The fracture path was nonlinear in clay infused composites 262 for the fracture propagation barrier properties of nanoclay into 263 composites. Table 1 Moisture absorption data of jute biopol composites Moisture gain(%)After 7daysAfter 14daysAfter 20daysAfter 30daysAfter 60daysUTJBC 3.987 6 0.23 5.816 6 0.16 6.148 6 0.34 6.189 6 0.18 6.279 6 0.13TJBC 3.836 6 0.62 5.026 6 0.53 5.835 6 0.27 5.949 6 0.44 5.938 6 0.402% Nanoclay TJBC 3.651 6 0.44 4.572 6 0.30 5.669 6 0.29 5.824 6 .29 5.882 6 0.253% Nanoclay TJBC 3.639 6 0.35 4.554 6 0.36 5.475 6 0.47 5.744 6 0.37 5.8023 6 0.104% Nanoclay TJBC 3.602 6 0.24 4.5792 6 0.17 5.337 6 0.35 5.643 6 0.26 5.775 6 0.21 Fig. 2 Flexure stress-strain plots ( a  ) before moisture absorp-tion and ( b  ) after moisture absorption for 60 daysFig. 3 SEM micrographs of jute biopol composites after flex-ure test J_ID: JYT DOI: 10.1115/1.4004690 Date: 1-August-11 Stage: Page: 4 Total Pages: 8ID:  sambasivamt  Time: 11:47 I Path: Q:/3b2/JYT#/Vol00000/110027/APPFile/AI-JYT#110027 000000-4 /   Vol. 00, MONTH 2011  Transactions of the ASME  PROOF COPY [MATS-11-1039] 003104JYT 264  Flexural properties of these composites were also determined 265  after moisture absorption for 60 days (Fig. 2( b )). Higher flexural 266  strength and modulus were observed in TJBC compared with 267  UTJBC. Better flexural properties were also observed in nanoclay 268  infused samples compared with conventional composites. How- 269  ever, flexural strength and modulus decreased after moisture 270  absorption, as expected. The results are shown in Table 2. 271  Decrease in the flexural strength was highest (32%) in the UTJBC 272  and lowest (15%) in the 4 wt. % nanoclay infused samples. It is 273  also an indication of the moisture barrier properties of the nano- 274  clay in the composites system. 275  The water sorption characteristics of composites are shown in 276  Table 3. Water absorption decreased with nanoparticle loading. 277  Chemically treated fiber reinforced composites showed lower  278  water absorption compared with untreated fiber reinforced compo- 279  sites because of better fiber wetting and interfacial bonding. Cellu- 280  lose molecules in raw jute fibers contain hydroxyl groups which 281  are polar in nature and absorb more moisture from atmosphere, 282  whereas treated fibers have acetic groups, which are less polar  283  than hydroxyl groups. As a result, treated fiber reinforced compo- 284  sites absorb less water, which is important for better dimensional 285  stability. Nanoclay acted as a barrier to retard water absorption 286  into composites. 287  Table 4 shows biodegradation data of jute biopol composites. 288  After 20 days, 1.7% and 1.8% weight loss were observed in 289  UTJBC and TJBC, respectively, whereas 1.6% weight loss was 290  observed in nanoclay infused specimens. After 60 days, all sam- 291  ples showed 5 to 6 % weight loss. This loss was mainly due to the 292  degradation of biopol. After 60 days, the degradation was higher  293  and about 10% weight loss was observed. After 90 days deboning 294  between fiber and matrix was seen in UTJBC (Fig. 4). Surface 295  treatment resulted in better interfacial bonding, which was also 296 observed after 90-day degradation. Nanoclay showed no signifi- 297 cant effect on the biodegradation of composites. 298 DMA was performed before and after biodegradation tests to 299 study the response of stiffness of the jute/biopol composites as a 300 function of temperature. From DMA tests (Fig. 5), it was observed 301 that the storage modulus was highest at room temperature and 302 decreased linearly with increasing temperature. The storage mod- 303 ulus was higher in TJBC compared with that of UTJBC. This can 304 be attributed to better interfacial bonding between fiber and matrix Table 2 Comparison of flexural properties before and after moisture absorption Strength(MPa)Strengthafter moisturegain (MPa)Change instrength (%)Modulus(GPa)Modulusafter moisturegain (GPa)Change inmodulus (%)UTJBC 30.25 6 1.38 24.5 6 1.29 32.36 1.91 6 0.53 1.50 6 0.37 21.4TJBC 33.88 6 1.62 26.0 6 1.27 23.2 2.16 6 0.48 1.7 6 0.21 21.22% Nanoclay TJBC 38.17 6 1.46 28.0 6 1.52 26.6 2.17 6 0.49 2.01 6 0.28 7.43% Nanoclay TJBC 39.43 6 0.95 30.8 6 1.31 21.8 3.20 6 0.51 3.0 6 0.65 6.254% Nanoclay TJBC 40.87 6 1.43 34.4 6 1.24 15.83 3.20 6 0.36 3.0 6 0.19 6.25 Table 3 Water absorption data of jute biopol composites Water absorbed (%) After 2 h After 24 hUTJBC 7.21 6 0.75 8.149 6 0.86TJBC 5.805 6 0.74 7.768 6 0.812% Nanoclay TJBC 5.775 6 0.81 7.488 6 0.543% Nanoclay TJBC 5.711 6 .44 7.478 6 0.684% Nanoclay TJBC 4.835 6 0.68 7.167 6 0.46 Table 4 Degradation data of jute biopol composites Weight loss(%)After 20daysAfter 30daysAfter 60daysAfter 90daysUTJBC 1.745 6 0.31 2.067 6 0.44 6.179 6 0.89 10.653 6 0.93TJBC 1.889 6 0.59 2.196 6 0.70 5.993 6 0.78 10.898 6 0.572% NanoclayTJBC1.606 6 0.11 2.051 6 0.45 5.604 6 0.76 10.595 6 0.973% NanoclayTJBC1.602 6 0.43 2.133 6 0.17 5.519 6 0.91 10.694 6 0.294% NanoclayTJBC1.604 6 0.016 2.092 6 0.30 5.561 6 0.79 10.921 6 0.13 Fig. 4 Optical micrographs of jute biopol composites beforedegradation and after degradation for 90 days J_ID: JYT DOI: 10.1115/1.4004690 Date: 1-August-11 Stage: Page: 5 Total Pages: 8ID:  sambasivamt  Time: 11:48 I Path: Q:/3b2/JYT#/Vol00000/110027/APPFile/AI-JYT#110027 Journal of Engineering Materials and Technology  MONTH 2011, Vol. 00  / 000000-5
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