Pretreatment assisted synthesis and characterization of cellulose nanocrystals and cellulose nanofibers from absorbent cotton

Emmanuel Abu-Danso, Varsha Srivastava, Mika Sillanpää, Amit Bhatnagar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

53 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In this work, cellulose nanocrystals (CNCs) and cellulose nanofibers (CNFs) were synthesized from absorbent cotton. Two pretreatments viz. dewaxing and bleaching with mild alkali were applied to the precursor (cotton). Acid hydrolysis was conducted with H2SO4 and dissolution of cotton was achieved with a mixture of NaOH-thiourea-urea-H2O at −3 °C. Synthesized cellulose samples were characterized using FTIR, XRD, SEM, BET, and zeta potential. It seems that synthesis conditions contributed to negative surface charge on cellulose samples and CNCs had the higher negative surface charge compared to CNFs. Furthermore, BET surface area, pore volume and pore diameter of CNCs were found to be higher as compared to CNFs. The dewaxed cellulose nanofibers (CNF D) had a slightly higher BET surface area (0.47 m2/g) and bigger pore diameter (59.87 Å) from attenuated contraction compared to waxed cellulose nanofibers (CNF W) (0.38 m2/g and 44.89 Å). The XRD of CNCs revealed a semi-crystalline structure and the dissolution agents influenced the crystallinity of CNFs. SEM images showed the porous nature of CNFs, the flaky nature and the nano-sized width of CNCs. Synthesized CNF D showed a better potential as an adsorbent with an average lead removal efficiency of 91.49% from aqueous solution.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)248-257
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Journal of Biological Macromolecules
Volume102
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2017
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Acid hydrolysis
  • Alkali dissolution
  • Cellulose

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Structural Biology
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology

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