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Co-Injecting Bioplastics: Investigating Process Engineering and Performance

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Title: Co-Injecting Bioplastics: Investigating Process Engineering and Performance
Author: Hotz, Nicholas
Department: School of Engineering
Program: Engineering
Advisor: Mohanty, AmarMisra, Manjusri
Abstract: Mechanical performance improvement of brittle bioplastic polylactic acid (PLA) was investigated through the use of a novel processing method: co-injection moulding. Co-injection moulding produces layered products with distinct core and skin phases. PLA toughening was attempted via encapsulation in a polycaprolactone (PCL) skin. Select co-injection operating parameters were assessed regarding their ability to influence product morphology. Injection speeds and skin melt temperature were observed to have negative effects on core content and advancement, while core ratio had a positive influence. These results were used to develop samples with up to 60% biobased PLA content. Comparable PLA/PCL blend samples were produced for mechanical testing. Co-injection products had better tensile strength and stiffness compared to similar blends, but the layered structure was less adept at resisting flexural stress. Impact resistance improved with co-injection compared to neat PLA. Co-injection was identified as a functional bioplastics processing method which results in unique mechanical behaviour.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10214/8830
Date: 2015-04
Rights: Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 CanadaAttribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 Canada


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