Inorganic fillers and their effects on the properties of flax/PLA composites after UV degradation

Moumita Sit, Saeid Hosseinpour Dashatan, Zhong Yi Zhang, Hom Dhakal, Moussa Khalfallah, Nicolas Gamer, Jarren Ling

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The present investigation seeks to assess the impact of fillers on the mechanical characteristics of entirely biodegradable composites, introducing an advanced solution to fulfil long-term durability demands within point-of-purchase (POP) industries. The inclusion of calcium carbonate (CaCO3) fillers on the various properties of the flax fibre-reinforced composites, after accelerated irradiation in an ultraviolet (UV) radiation exposure has been investigated in the present study. Different types of flax fibre-reinforced poly lactic acid (PLA) biocomposites (with and without filler) were fabricated. The mechanical (tensile and flexural), and physical properties of the specimens were assessed after 500 h of exposure to accelerated UV irradiation of 0.48 W/m2 at 50 °C and were compared with those of the unexposed specimens. The results indicate that the presence of the inorganic filler significantly improved the performance of the biocomposites compared to the unfilled biocomposites after UV exposure. After adding 20% of fillers, the tensile strength was increased by 2% after UV degradation, whereas the biocomposite without filler lost 18% of its strength after UV exposure. This can be attributed to the change in the photo-degradation of the PLA due to the presence of the CaCO3 filler, which acts as a safeguard against UV light penetration by creating a protective barrier. The scanning electron microscopy (SEM) images of the degraded specimen surface show substantial difference in the surface topography of the composites with and without fillers.
Original languageEnglish
Article number3221
Number of pages15
Issue number15
Publication statusPublished - 28 Jul 2023


  • biocomposite
  • flax fibre
  • UV degradation
  • filler
  • mechanical properties

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