Compost to Composites An Eco-Friendly way to Improve Rubber Video
22 Feb 2018
The concept of "from trash to treasure" holds true for the world of composting, where food waste is recycled into fertilizer for gardens. But what if compost could go beyond fertilizer? Now, one group reports in ACS Omega that by collecting the gases produced during the compost process, they can combine it with rubber to make optimized electronic sealants and sensors.
Natural rubber is obtained by tapping the Heveabrasiliensis tree and having a little patience. This polymer is used in everyday items from tires to rainboots because of its flexibility, elasticity and durability. But natural rubber usually isn't pure by the time it hits the pavement. Manufacturers have added fillers, such as carbon black, to it to enhance its properties. Because carbon black is needed in large amounts that negatively affect the rubber's color and other properties, scientists have been looking for an alternative to completely or partially replace it. One option being explored is graphitic nanocarbons as fillers. Alain Pénicaud and colleagues set out to make nanocarbon fillers that are more cost-efficient and consistent in size than others being developed.
The team used graphitic nanocarbons derived from the methane produced by decomposing food, or compost, which is inexpensive and sustainable. In addition, the nanocarbons were small and consistently sized, meaning they would be ideal for fillers. The materials were combined with natural rubber to form a composite. Upon testing, the composite's electrical resistivity was verified, which the researchers say shows that the material could be applied as a sealant for electrical devices. The composite only gained conductivity when loaded with 10 wt percent of the nanocarbons, a potential application for developing sensors. The group concluded that the nanocarbons were a viable competitor to carbon black as a filler. Watch this Headline Science video to see this material in action.
Chemical Market has been in the industry since almost 40 years. We owe our success to you and since the last few years things have been crazy for the world at large. The editorial independence has never been more important.
Our articles and press releases come from reliable sources and we keep delivering high impact trustworthy news, reviews and technical articles and reports free from commercial or political influence.
We believe everyone deserves equal access to accurate news and there are many news aggregator sites but we don't participate in those as they have a very broad criteria where not all news articles sites can participate and not all of them are true articles written for the purpose of knowledge but mostly are commercialized. We bring you news and information in the chemical industry and provide vital information to make decisions based on fact and not fiction.
Subscribe our magazine for as little as Rs.50 a month (Rs. 600/yr) or $1 a month ($11.99/yr)