Abstract :

In the last century, polymers have appeared as one of the best essential materials used in daily life, polypropylene (PP) being one such instance. Until lately, synthetic filler ingredients were the desired choice for improving the strength of PP. Nevertheless, natural filler/fiber ingredients are developing as appropriate substitutes to synthetic ingredients for strengthening polymers such as PP due to their environment friendship, high richness, renewability, and cost efficacy. Numerous study endeavors have been made to study the effect of plant and waste fiber (abaca fiber, AF) based ingredients on the physicomechanical and biodegradation behavior of PP composites, mainly focusing on the fibers and their weight percentages within the composites. AFs were treated with ultraviolet (UV) light at varying intensities and then composites were fabricated by compression molding. The mechanical features of the irradiated AF/PP composites were considerably enhanced compared to the untreated ones. To enhance these features, irradiated AFs were grafted with 2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate (HEMA) by photocuring under UV light. The number of UV passes and therefore the HEMA concentration were optimized along with the quantity of grafting of HEMA, tensile, and impact features. Again, the irradiated AFs were treated with alkaline solutions of varying concentrations at varying temperatures. The optimized alkali-treated AFs were grafted with the optimized HEMA by photocured with the same UV-pass and their composite specimens rendered the best mechanical features. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) studies exhibited that the optimized alkali with optimized HEMA treated composite had better dispersion than the optimized HEMA treated composite. Moisture absorption and weathering effect of the composites were also investigated.