Characterisation of Untreated and Natural Latex Treated Borassus aethiopum Palm Leaf Stalk Fibre
Authors: Shehu U, Ause T, Alabi AS
The use of lignocellulosic fibres as reinforcement in polymer matrices is increasing daily because they address ecological and environmental issues such as recyclability, renewability and non-toxicity. In this work, fibres were extracted from Borassus aethiopum leaf stalk through the combination of water retting and mechanical method followed by natural plant latex treatment. The fibre was characterised using Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy, single fibre strength test and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The SEM revealed striated grooves on the treated fibre surface, while FTIR showed improved reactivity of fibres due to the introduction of some active functional groups from natural plant latex onto the fibre surface. It was concluded that latex treatment improved fibre–matrix interfacial bonding through mechanical keying of the matrix on striated grooves and fibre matrix reaction at active sites on the fibre surface.
Affiliations: Department of Metallurgical and Materials Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Nigeria.
Keywords: Lignocellulosic Fibres, Borassus Aethiopum, Natural Plant Latex, Latex Treatment, Mechanical Keying
Published date: 2018/12/30