To enhance competitiveness of PLA-based applications, the costs need to be optimized by using affordable filling materials. The influence of organic and inorganic fillers on thermal, rheological and mechanical properties of polymer composites depends on a number of factors: filler concentration, filler particle size and shape, filler/polymer adhesion, filler dispersion in the polymer matrix, and the applied composite processing. Successful applications are seen in packaging, textile industry, in the biomedical field, and also in fiber reinforced composite manufacturing. The challenge is to improve filler dispersion and interfacial compatibility with PLA matrix. The following aims are pursued in this project: (1) investigation of plasma treatment on PLA/filler compatibility, (2) explore the effect of chemical modification of PLA functional groups via condensation in the presence of suitable agent with hydroxyl group at followed with acetylation on the interfacial compatibility with non-modified and plasma modified filler and (3) proper selection of adequate filler and PLA modification to enhance filler/PLA interfacial adhesion to obtain composites with improved material performance. The project is planned for two years and will strength the cooperation between Institute for Chemistry and Technology of Materials (ICTM), Graz University of Technology and Polymer Centre (PC), Faculty of Technology, Tomas Bata University in Zlin with benefits of excellent training opportunities to students, including to members of the research institutes. Both PIs are active in the international scientific community. The synergy in background and complementary strengths will be utilized and promoted through international conferences and events. The results will be published in the specialized journal such as Colloids and Surfaces B: Biointerfaces, PLASMA PROCESSES AND POLYMERS, Molecules and Biopolymers as well as at Websites of ICTM and PC institutes and University Press.
|Effective start/end date||1/01/13 → 31/12/14|