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Pang M.-M.,Universiti Sains Malaysia | Pang M.-M.,Texchem Polymers Research Center | Pun M.-Y.,Texchem Polymers Research Center | Chow W.-S.,Universiti Sains Malaysia | Ishak Z.A.M.,Universiti Sains Malaysia
Journal of Cleaner Production | Year: 2014

Thermoformed trays made from biobased materials were prepared from agricultural waste (seeds or tubers), plasticizer and polypropylene (PP). A talc-filled PP thermoformed tray was used for comparison. The carbon footprint of the thermoformed trays was calculated according to PAS 2050. System boundaries were established according to a business-to-business approach, based on data collected regarding the raw material production, transportation and processing. Biobased trays yield a lower carbon footprint than talc-filled polypropylene trays as a result of renewable resource input, a lower processing temperature and shorter thermoforming cycle. The carbon footprint reduction could be achieved through optimization of the thermoforming process and the use of low-footprint raw materials. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. Source


Pang M.-M.,Universiti Sains Malaysia | Pang M.-M.,Texchem Polymers Research Center | Pun M.-Y.,Texchem Polymers Research Center | Ishak Z.A.M.,Universiti Sains Malaysia
Journal of Applied Polymer Science | Year: 2013

Thermoplastic starch (TPS) obtained from agricultural waste was blended with polypropylene (PP) for natural weathering studies. The agricultural waste material was obtained from seeds and tubers with a starch content of approximately 50%. Commercial-grade TPS and native tapioca-based TPS were also prepared for comparison. The biobased TPS/PP extruded sheets were exposed to natural weathering for six months and their deterioration in weight, tensile properties, thermal properties, and relative molecular weight were monitored. SEM micrographs revealed the formation of surface cracking and the presence of microorganisms. FTIR spectrum indicated an increase in the carbonyl index over time as a result of the formation of degradation products. TPS/PP blends made from agricultural waste showed a better resistance to natural weathering compared to the other high starch formulation. The higher starch content in the blend system encouraged the rapid degradation process due to the combined effect of UV radiation with oxidation, moisture, temperature, and microbial attack. Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Source


Pang M.-M.,Universiti Sains Malaysia | Pang M.-M.,Texchem Polymers Research Center | Pun M.-Y.,Texchem Polymers Research Center | Ishak Z.A.M.,Universiti Sains Malaysia
Journal of Applied Polymer Science | Year: 2013

Thermoplastic starch (TPS) from agricultural waste consisting of different amylose/amylopectin ratios was blended with polypropylene (PP) for degradation studies. The agricultural waste material was obtained from seeds and tubers with low starch contents of ∼50%. Non-Fickian behavior was observed for the water absorption test, and water uptake increased with increases in amylopectin content. The biodegradation was assessed based on the extent of carbon conversion, and was found to be dependent on the water absorption behavior and molecular structure of the starch component. Outdoor soil burial showed greater weight loss and deterioration in tensile properties compared to indoor soil burial. Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Source

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