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Study of the Influence of the Reprocessing Cycles on the Final Properties of Polylactide Pieces Obtained by Injection Molding

AuthorsAgüero, Ángel; Morcillo, Maria del Carmen; Quiles-Carrillo, Luis; Balart, Rafael; Boronat, Teodomiro; Lascano, Diego; Torres Giner, Sergio ; Fenollar, Octavio
Issue Date2019
PublisherMultidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute
CitationPolymers 11(12): 1908 (2019)
AbstractThis research work aims to study the influence of the reprocessing cycles on the mechanical, thermal, and thermomechanical properties of polylactide (PLA). To this end, PLA was subjected to as many as six extrusion cycles and the resultant pellets were shaped into pieces by injection molding. Mechanical characterization revealed that the PLA pieces presented relatively similar properties up to the third reprocessing cycle, whereas further cycles induced an intense reduction in ductility and toughness. The effect of the reprocessing cycles was also studied by the changes in the melt fluidity, which showed a significant increase after four reprocessing cycles. An increase in the bio-polyester chain mobility was also attained with the number of the reprocessing cycles that subsequently favored an increase in crystallinity of PLA. A visual inspection indicated that PLA developed certain yellowing and the pieces also became less transparent with the increasing number of reprocessing cycles. Therefore, the obtained results showed that PLA suffers a slight degradation after one or two reprocessing cycles whereas performance impairment becomes more evident above the fourth reprocessing cycle. This finding suggests that the mechanical recycling of PLA for up to three cycles of extrusion and subsequent injection molding is technically feasible.
Description© 2019 by the authors.
Publisher version (URL)https://doi.org/10.3390/polym11121908
Appears in Collections:(IATA) Artículos
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