Parametric study on acid hydrolysis of kapok (Ceiba pentandra (L.) Gaertn.) fibers for cellulose nanocrystals production

Author : Varilla, Khrisha Pineda
Major Adviser : Manalo, Ronniel D.
Committee Members : Borines, Myra G.; Guerrero, Gino Apollo M.; Razal, Ramon A.
Year : 2015
Month : December
Type : Thesis
Degree: BS
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The study dealt on the potential of Ceiba pentandra (L.) Gaertn. fibers as a source of cellulose nanocrystals (CNC). The fibers were pre-treated with chloroform and hot water to remove the extractives. Holocellulose and alpha-cellulose were then produced using 20% (w/v) sodium chlorite and 17.5% (w/v) sodium hydroxide, respectively. Cellulose nanocrystals were then isolated through acid hydrolysis by varying the sulfuric acid concentration (46% v/v and 50% v/v), reaction time (30 min and 45 min), and temperature (40°C and 50°C). The effects of the different combinations of the parameters on the yield were determined. Morphological characteristics of the CNC were observed using Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM). Chemical transformations of raw kapok to cellulose nanocrystals were analyzed using Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FT-IR). From the results of the experiment, it was found out that treatment combination of 46 % acid concentration, 45 min, and 50°C gave the highest yield of 53.64 % among the samples. Results of the spectroscopic analysis indicate that CNCs were obtained from kapok. Results of the AFM revealed that the average length and width of CNC with the highest yield were 105.50 nm and 27.22 nm, respectively. Using statistical analysis, it was found out that only temperature had a significant effect on the yield, while acid concentration significantly affected the CNC length, on the other hand, CNC width was significantly affected by both reaction time and acid concentration.

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