Hydration and Sorption Properties of Raw and Milled Flax Fibers

  • Abdalla H. Karoyo
    Abdalla H. Karoyo
    Department of Chemistry, University of Saskatchewan, 110 Science Place, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan S7N 5C9, Canada
  • Leila Dehabadi
    Leila Dehabadi
    Dr. Ma’s Laboratories, Inc., Unit 4, 8118 North Fraser Way, Burnaby, British Columbia V5J 0E5, Canada
  • Wahab Alabi
    Wahab Alabi
    Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Saskatchewan, 57 Campus Drive, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan S7N 5A9, Canada
    More by Wahab Alabi
  • Carey J. Simonson
    Carey J. Simonson
    Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Saskatchewan, 57 Campus Drive, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan S7N 5A9, Canada
  • , and 
  • Lee D. Wilson*
    Lee D. Wilson
    Department of Chemistry, University of Saskatchewan, 110 Science Place, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan S7N 5C9, Canada
    *E-mail: [email protected]. Phone: +1-306-966-2961. Fax: +1-306-966-4730.
Cite this: ACS Omega 2020, 5, 11, 6113–6121
Publication Date (Web):March 11, 2020
https://doi.org/10.1021/acsomega.0c00100
Copyright © 2020 American Chemical Society
ACS AuthorChoice
Article Views
749
Altmetric
-
Citations
LEARN ABOUT THESE METRICS
PDF (4 MB)
Supporting Info (1)»

Abstract

The physicochemical and hydration properties of mechanically modified flax fibers (FFs) were investigated herein. Raw flax fibers (FF-R) were ball-milled and sieved through mesh with various aperture sizes (420, 210, and 125 μm) to achieve modified samples, denoted as FF-420, FF-210, and FF-125, respectively. The physicochemical and hydration properties of FF-R with variable particle sizes were characterized using several complementary techniques: microscopy (SEM), spectroscopy (FT-IR, XRD, and XPS), thermoanalytical methods (DSC and TGA), adsorption isotherms using gas/dye probes, and solvent swelling studies in liquid H2O. The hydration of FF biomass is governed by the micropore structure and availability of active surface sites, as revealed by the adsorption isotherm results and the TGA/DSC profiles of the hydrated samples. Gravimetric water swelling, water retention values, and vapor adsorption results provide further support that particle size reduction of FF-R upon milling parallels the changes in surface chemical and physicochemical properties relevant to adsorption/hydration in the modified FF materials. This study outlines a facile strategy for the valorization and tuning of the physicochemical properties of agricultural FF biomass via mechanical treatment for diverse applications in biomedicine, energy recovery, food, and biosorbents for environmental remediation.

1. Introduction

ARTICLE SECTIONS
Jump To

The hydration properties of biomaterials occupy a key role in their physical, chemical, and microbiological attributes. (1) In particular, the role of water activity and moisture adsorption/desorption processes form the basis of a wide range of applications in food processing, materials science, and advanced polymer technology. (2) Thus, a better understanding of solute–water interactions is required for the rational design of advanced materials, such as desiccants, humectants, and adsorbents, for energy harvesting, food preservation, and environmental remediation. Natural fiber-based composites are gaining greater interest in the fields of energy, food, and polymer technology because of their environmental sustainability, eco-friendly nature, and favorable mechanical strength and performance. (2,3) The continued interest in the use of natural flax fiber (FF) in biocomposites over traditional reinforcing materials (e.g., glass fiber, talc, and mica) relates to its low cost, low density, high mechanical strength, and biodegradability. (4) However, the hydrophilic nature and lack of good interfacial adhesion of natural flax limit its use in composites because of degradation of its mechanical properties upon swelling in water. The hydrophile–lipophile balance (HLB) of natural flax can be tuned by substituting the surface hydroxyl (−OH) groups via such reactions as acetylation, benzoylation, and peroxide treatment. (5,6) Consequently, the water affinity of natural fibers is reduced, whereas their compatibility with apolar polymer matrices is enhanced. (7) The chemical treatment of flax affords changes in the surface properties of the material, owing to changes in the relative biomass composition. Changes in surface properties are usually accompanied by changes in the surface morphology and textural properties. (8) More recently, research on natural flax has focused on its water uptake properties. (7,9) By contrast, the uptake properties of natural FFs with water vapor have been more actively studied because of their unique hydration properties and relevant applications to the textile industry. (10−12) Recently, advanced applications of fibers have emerged that utilize hydration phenomena, such as those related to the biomedical field (e.g., wound dressing), (13,14) biosorbents for environmental remediation (oil, dyes, and heavy metals), (15,16) energy harvesting in heat, ventilation, and air-conditioning (HVAC) systems and food-based products. (2) In particular, recent reports have detailed comprehensive reviews on the removal of metals, dyes, and other organic contaminants using biomaterials and their modified forms as versatile sorbents. (17,18)
Biopolymer hydration is ubiquitous to many chemical processes and stabilization of biological structures. (19−21) Theoretical and experimental techniques have been employed to investigate the hydration properties of biopolymers. (20,22) For example, single-crystal X-ray diffraction techniques and high-resolution NMR spectroscopy have provided unique insight into biopolymer hydration phenomena. (20,22) More recently, new insight into surface-mediated hydration processes was obtained using complementary material characterization studies: spectroscopy, thermal analyses, solvent uptake, and adsorption isotherm methods. Recent studies (23,24) on the hydration of starch- and cellulose-based materials in mixed solvent systems reveal that the relative biopolymer–solvent affinity depends on various physicochemical properties: (1) HLB of the biopolymer, (2) relative polarity of the biopolymer–solvent system, (3) textural [surface area (SA) and pore structure] properties, and (4) solvent properties such as relative polarity and molar volume. The ability of natural FFs to adsorb water relates to the presence of abundant polar functional groups (−OH and COOH) that characterize surface adsorption sites. The cell wall of a plant fiber is considered to be a natural composite that consists of crystalline microfibrils embedded in an amorphous lignin–hemicellulose–pectin matrix. (9,25) The variable composition of cellulose, hemicellulose, pectin, and lignin imparts a variable HLB character to the composite structure of FFs because of the variable amorphous nature and abundance of the functional groups. (9) Independent studies report the composition of raw flax biomass as ∼70% cellulose, 18% hemicellulose, 2% pectins, 2% lignins, and ∼1.7% oil/waxes. The respective components of flax contribute differentially to the water uptake properties because of the variable level and accessibility of surface functional groups. (26) Also, the overall composition of the FFs likely varies upon chemical and/or mechanical treatment because of changes in surface accessibility. Thus, it can be concluded that chemical and/or mechanical treatment of natural FFs afford structurally modified materials with tunable physicochemical properties for tailored applications, in accordance with numerous literature reports. (25−28) Despite extensive research on the relationship between water sorption and the role of particle size in the surface and textural properties of ball milled/ground flax, there are limited studies that report on the hydration properties of these modified materials.
Herein, various complementary techniques were used to study the physicochemical and hydration properties of natural flax in its pristine and mechanically modified forms: spectroscopy [Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), powder X-ray diffraction (PXRD), and scanning electron microscopy (SEM)], thermoanalytical (differential scanning calorimetry, DSC; thermogravimetric analysis, TGA), and sorption methods (g/l adsorption isotherms and solvent swelling). Modified FFs were prepared via ball milling, where the ball-milled raw FF (FF-R) was sieved using various mesh sizes with variable apertures (425, 210, and 125 μm) to prepare FF-420, -210, and -125 materials, respectively. The objectives of this study are (1) to characterize the physicochemical properties of natural raw flax with variable particle sizes modified via ball milling and sieving, (2) to investigate the water (g/l) uptake properties of the raw and modified materials, and (3) to gain insight into the structure–adsorption relationship for FF biomass and its hydration properties. Herein, we demonstrate that the hydration and water-swelling/retention properties of the pristine (FF-R) and modified (FF-420, -210, and -125) FFs vary markedly, in agreement with the variable textural (surface and pore structure) properties of the materials. The results of this study are likely to contribute to valorization of flax using a facile milling approach to modify the biomass structure, along with tailoring of the biomass properties. The results of this study are likely to have practical utility because of the ubiquitous importance of hydration phenomena and emerging fiber-based technologies in medicine, energy, food, textiles, (30,31) and environmental remediation. (32)

2. Experimental Section

ARTICLE SECTIONS
Jump To

2.1. Materials and Chemicals

The FF-R material was procured from Biolin Research Inc. (Saskatoon, SK, Canada). Spectroscopic-grade potassium bromide (KBr) and wire mesh sieves [USA standard sieves; no. 40 (420 μm), no. 70 (210 μm), and no. 120 (125 μm)] were purchased from Sigma-Aldrich (ON, Canada).

2.2. Modification of the Raw Flax

Mechanically modified FF materials were processed by ball milling and rotary grinding of FF-R. Ball milling was achieved by mixing the raw flax material with ZrO2 balls (6–10 mm in diameter) in a stainless steel milling jar with a weight ratio of 1:10. The rotation speed of the disk and milling jar was set to 450 rpm, where the milling jar was rotated alternately in the forward and reverse directions at intervals of 2 min. The ball-milled FF samples were further ground in a rotary coffee grinder and sieved using variable mesh sizes (no. 40, 70, and 120) to achieve FF samples denoted as FF-420, FF-210, and FF-125, respectively. The raw flax sample (FF-R) and the mechanically modified samples (FF-420, -210, and -125) were characterized using complementary techniques, as described below.

2.3. Surface and Textural Characterization of the FF Materials

2.3.1. Scanning Electron Microscopy

SEM images were obtained using FEG-SEM SU6600 instruments at an accelerating voltage of 15 kV, using low (30×) and high (1.5k×) magnification.

2.3.2. X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy

XPS measurements were carried out using a Kratos (Manchester, UK) AXIS Supra system. All survey scan spectra were collected in the 5–1200 binding energy range in 1 eV steps with a pass energy of 160 eV. High-resolution spectra were also conducted using 0.05 eV steps with a pass energy of 20 eV. An accelerating voltage of 15 eV and an emission current of 15 mA were used for data collection.

2.3.3. X-ray Diffraction

XRD patterns of the FF-R and modified forms were recorded with a PANalytical Empyrean powder X-ray diffractometer. Monochromatic Co Kα1 radiation was used while the applied voltage and current were set to 40 kV and 45 mA, respectively. The FF films were mounted in a horizontal configuration after evaporation of methanol. The XRD patterns were measured in the continuous mode over a 2θ range (7–50°) with a scan rate of 3.2° min–1.

2.3.4. FT-IR Spectroscopy

The FT-IR spectra of the FF samples were recorded using a BIO-RAD FTS-40 spectrophotometer operating in the diffuse reflectance (DRIFT) mode. The samples (ca. 10 mg) were mixed with spectroscopic-grade KBr (ca. 90 mg) using a spatula with minimum grinding to maintain the particle size and integrity of the samples. A total of 132 scans were acquired for each sample for a spectral region of 400–4000 cm–1 with a resolution of 4 cm–1.

2.3.5. Nitrogen Adsorption Isotherms

The SA and pore structure properties of the raw and modified samples were measured using a Micromeritics ASAP 2020 (Norcross, GA) with an accuracy of ±5% and calibrated using alumina (Micromeritics) with a known pore volume (PV) and SA. Each sample (1 g) was degassed at an evacuation rate of 5 mmHg s–1 at 100 °C for 48 h. The micropore SA was estimated using a t-plot (de Boer method), whereas the Barret–Joyner–Halenda (BJH) method was employed to estimate the PV and pore diameter (PD) from the adsorption isotherm using the Kelvin equation. (33)

2.4. Hydration and Sorption Properties

2.4.1. Dye Adsorption Kinetics

The sorption uptake kinetics of the FF-R and mechanically modified samples (FF-420, -210, and -125) were measured using a one-pot kinetic method, (34) where the uptake of a chromophore dye probe (methylene blue; MB) was measured as a function of time. Briefly, the FF adsorbents (ca. 120 mg) were added into dialysis bags that were previously equilibrated in water. The fiber sample was enclosed by clipping both ends of the dialysis bag in a manner analogous to a tea sachet. The adsorbents were immersed in a beaker containing ca. 150 mL of 10 μM MB aqueous solution, equipped with a Teflon stirrer bar, with mixing at ∼150 rpm. Aliquots of solution (∼2.6 mL) were taken at variable time intervals during continuous stirring, where the equilibrium dye concentration was measured by UV–vis spectrophotometry (Varian CARY 100). The temporal uptake (Qt) was plotted as a function of time (h) according to a method detailed elsewhere. (34)

2.4.2. Thermogravimetric Analysis and Differential scanning calorimetry

TGA (Q50 TA Instruments) of the flax samples was performed with a heating rate of 5 °C min–1 from 30 to 500 °C, under a N2 purge gas. Solid samples were analyzed in the dry and wet states in aluminum pans, where the samples weights were fixed at 20 ± 0.2 mg. The sample dosage in Millipore water was 10% (w/w). The integration of the thermal events in the TGA profile was measured using the TA Q50 software.
Differential scanning calorimetry (TA, Q20 TA Analyzer) of the raw and modified flax materials was performed between 30 and 150 °C at a scan rate set to 10 °C/min. Solid samples (5 ± 0.5 mg) were analyzed using hermetically sealed aluminum pans, and nitrogen gas was used to regulate the sample temperature and sample compartment purging.

2.4.3. Water Swelling and Water Retention Value

The various FF materials were evaluated for their uptake of water at equilibrium in order to estimate the degree of solvent swelling in liquid water. Dry FF samples (ca. 20 mg) were equilibrated in 7 mL of Millipore water for 48 h. The degree of swelling (Sw) was calculated using eq 1(1)Ws refers to the wet sample and Wd refers to the dry sample after oven drying to a constant weight (±0.1 g) at 60 °C.
The water retention value (WRV) was evaluated by equilibrating 40 mg of each sample in de-ionized water for 1 h, followed by centrifugation (Precision Scientific Co.) at 4000 rpm for 1 h to separate the solid from the liquid water. The hydrated solid sample was weighed (w1), followed by drying in a conventional oven at 105 °C. Finally, the sample was placed in a desiccator to cool for 12 h and weighed again (w2). Each measurement was carried out in triplicate and the WRVs (%WRV) were estimated using eq 2, where W1 (g) and W2 (g) are the weights of the wet and dry samples, respectively.(2)

2.4.4. Water Vapor Analysis

The water vapor adsorption isotherms were obtained using the Intelligent Gravimetric Analyzer system (IGA-002, Hiden Isochema, UK). Sample weights of ca. 30 mg were placed in a stainless steel container that were housed in a vessel equipped with a microbalance, a thermostat, and ultrahigh vacuum capability. Prior to the start of the isotherm measurements, samples were degassed at 70 °C and 10–8 mbar for 6 h, where the desired temperature inside the vessel was controlled accurately using an external water bath. The vapor adsorption isotherms were obtained at 25 °C for a range of pressures from 0 to 30 mbar with 5 mbar increments.

3. Results and Discussion

ARTICLE SECTIONS
Jump To

The milling of FF-R led to the preparation of mechanically modified biomass according to the particle size and SA. On the basis of previous reports, (4,5,25,35) it can be inferred that changes in the textural properties are accompanied by variations in the surface chemical properties. These effects are posited to have a direct impact on the hydration phenomena of the various FF samples. To gain insight into the role of mechanical treatment in the physicochemical and hydration properties of FF-R samples, complementary techniques were used to characterize the structure and physicochemical properties of the raw and treated FFs, as outlined in the sections below.

3.1. Textural and Surface Properties

The surface morphology of the raw and chemically modified FFs was characterized using SEM. In Figure 1, the SEM micrographs of the FF-R reveal long strands with fibrous features, along with an incremental reduction in the mean particle size upon mechanical treatment, as noted for FF-420, -210, and -125 samples. A previous report (25) for biomass materials indicate that a reduction in particle size occurs upon grinding, along with concomitant changes in the physical properties and chemical composition. These changes are accompanied by a reduced degree of polymerization, reduced crystallinity, and greater accessibility of surface functional groups. (25) The SEM images provide support of the disintegration of the waxy or organophilic layers that are present in the raw fiber sample, as evidenced in Figure 1.

Figure 1

Figure 1. SEM micrographs of FF-R and the modified materials: FF-420, FF-210, and FF-125, obtained at low (30×) and high (1.5k×) magnification.

Nitrogen adsorption isotherms provide characterization of the surface and textural properties of the flax biomass. In particular, the Brunauer–Emmett–Teller (BET) model affords estimates of the textural properties: SA, pore width (PW), and pore volume (PV) parameters that can provide insight into the structure–function relationship of such biomass. Figure 2 shows the N2 adsorption isotherms for FF-R and the mechanically treated materials (FF-420 and -210) and reveal that the modified and unmodified materials have limited porosity and SA. The isotherm results for the FF-125 sample are not reported herein because of instability during sample degassing for such fine particle sizes. However, the main nitrogen uptake event in the adsorption profile relates to the adsorption at the powder grain interface, according to the pronounced uptake at relative pressures (P/P0) near unity. The corresponding SA and pore structure parameters of the raw and milled fiber materials are relatively low, as listed in Table 1. In general, all the flax materials show very small SA (∼1 m2/g) that is characteristic of nonporous fibril materials, (23,24) with negligible pore volumes ranging ∼0.35 to 1.3 × 10–4 cm3/g (cf. Table 1). Although the PV is measurably smaller, it is marginally higher for the modified materials, where values are ca. 3- to 4-fold greater. The specific SA of the modified flax decreases with increasing pore structure, which may relate to the fiber geometry of the ground samples. (36) The increased hysteresis loop in the desorption profiles of the modified materials in Figure 2 relates to the effect of capillary condensation. The results are consistent with the greater pore structure accessibility, in agreement with the PV data. (37)

Figure 2

Figure 2. N2 adsorption isotherms of raw and milled flax plotted as the amount of N2 adsorbed as a function of relative pressure at 295 K.

Table 1. Surface and Textural Parameters of Various Flax Materials Estimated From N2 Adsorption Isotherm Results at 77 Ka
parameterFF-RFF-420FF-210FF-125
SA (cm2/g)1.290.5830.230ND
PW (nm)0.9030.9452.30ND
PV (10–5·cm3/g)3.5011.813.2ND
water swelling (%)67273516602010
vapor uptake (g/g)4.264925.265.32
KBET (L/mol)5.349.8910.210.5
a

ND (not detected): due to sample degassing instability for such fine particle sizes.

The crystallinity of the FF materials was estimated from the PXRD results shown in Figure 3. The XRD profiles reveal that the crystallinity of the FF-R material (fwhm ≈ 2.0) decreases upon modification (fwhm > 2.4) and follows the trend FF-R < FF-420 < FF-210 < FF-125, according to changes in linewidth and intensity of the cellulose I reflections at θ ≈ 15 and 22°. (25) These trends are understood in terms of the changes in the macromolecular structure of the biopolymers upon rupture of intermolecular bonds during grinding that leads to enriched content of the noncrystalline fraction of cellulose, in accordance with greater fibrillation upon milling of the biomass. (38) A greater proportion of amorphous cellulose has been reported for biomass through mercerization of natural fibers via alkali treatment because of disruption of the hydrogen bonding network of the biopolymer. (27,28)

Figure 3

Figure 3. X-ray diffraction spectra of the raw and mechanically modified FF samples.

The surface composition of the raw and ground FFs provides an account of the structural modification upon mechanical treatment of the samples. FT-IR and XPS are sensitive spectral techniques that can be used to characterize the surface chemistry of biopolymer and inorganic composites. (39,40) Previous reports (41,42) reveal that specific components of cellulosic fibers were studied using DRIFT and attenuated total reflection (ATR) methods, where the relative intensities of key spectral signatures were used to estimate the proportion of the respective fiber components. In Figure 4a, the various IR bands were assigned according to established reports: (35,41,43) ∼2900 cm–1 (C–H stretching), ∼1700 cm–1 (C═O carboxylic acid or ester stretching band for hemicellulose), and ∼1615 cm–1 (pectins). In an ATR characterization study of FFs by Garside and Wyeth, (42) the IR band ∼1600 cm–1 was assigned to adsorbed water and the signature ∼1430 cm–1 corresponds to the C═C in-plane aromatic vibrations of lignins. (41,42) In general, a greater spectral intensity of the IR bands at ca. 1735 and 1615 cm–1 for the mechanically modified FF samples provides support that a greater proportion of hemicellulose and pectin fraction reside at the treated biomass surface. It is inferred that reduction of particle sizes for the FF materials occurs upon milling, where the exposure of fresh biomass surface sites is accompanied by alteration of physicochemical properties relevant to sorption processes (e.g., surface charge, chemical functionality, and porosity). The surface accessible functional groups in the modified materials are likely altered upon milling, along with a reduction in the molecular weight because of changes in the biomass particle size and fiber morphology. The flax biomass is posited to become more amorphous with greater structural defects upon mechanical treatment, in agreement with the SEM and PXRD results. Consequently, the greater abundance of the surface functional groups (e.g., −C═O and −OH) is evidenced by the FT-IR results. In addition, XPS was used to study the surface composition of the FFs according to variable levels of mechanical milling.

Figure 4

Figure 4. (a) FT-IR and (b) XPS spectra of the raw and mechanically modified FF samples. The expanded bonding energy region for N 1s ca. 400 eV is shown as an inset.

The survey profiles (cf. Figure 4b) of the XPS data for the raw (FF-R) and the mechanically modified fibers (FF-420, -210, and -125) show unique spectral signatures at bond energies ∼285 (C 1s; 75–85%), 532 (O 1s; 16–24%), and 400 eV (N 1s; 1–2%). It is noteworthy that the N 1s region was not observed for the FF-R sample, as shown in Figure 4b, and a summary of spectral signatures for the convoluted XPS bands is shown in Table 2. In general, the C 1s spectra of the fiber materials were deconvoluted into three bonding states: C1 ≈ 285 eV (C–C/C–H), C2 ≈ 286 eV (C–OH/C–O), and C3 ≈ 288 eV (C═O), where the latter was of lesser abundance (cf. Table S1 in the Supporting Information). Similarly, the O 1s spectra were deconvoluted as two bonding states: O1 at ∼531 eV and O2 ∼532 eV. It is noteworthy that the bond energies corresponding to the N 1s region are associated with proteins (amides) that are observed solely for the modified fibers. It is noteworthy that the amide (R–NH–C═O) spectral band can be deconvoluted into various contributions because of N 1s (∼400 eV), O 1s (∼531 eV), and C 1s (∼288 and 286 eV) regions, (44,45) in agreement with the results shown in Table S1 in the Supporting Information. The foregoing suggests that mechanically modified fibers have greater abundance of functional groups that become exposed upon milling because of the removal of the waxy surface layer. Furthermore, some of the O 1s bond energies are associated with absorbed water onto the fiber surface sites, (44) in agreement with the FT-IR results presented above.
Table 2. XPS Composition and Bond Energy Data for the Raw and Modified FF Materials
 FF-RFF-125FF-210FF-420
 bond EFW%bond EFW%bond EFW%bond EFW%
O 1s532.403.2516.65532.603.3322.83532.453.1223.73532.5022.6222.62
C 1s285.403.1083.35284.603.4876.15285.453.5575.04285.5075.6475.64
N 1snegligiblenegligiblenegligible399.603.091.02400.452.921.24399.501.741.74

3.2. Fiber Hydration Properties

The physicochemical properties of biomaterials influence their hydration state and water adsorption properties from the vapor and in liquid-phase media. The results described above reveal that mechanical milling results in structural changes: reduced crystallinity and the relative abundance/accessibility of the surface functional groups and pore domains. Hydration properties of flax encompass biomass-solvent (water) affinity via surface interactions (e.g., hydrogen bonding, van der Waals, and ion–dipole or dipole–dipole interactions), according to the surface chemical and textural properties. Thus, the dye adsorption properties of FFs under kinetic conditions provide an estimate of the surface accessible functional groups. In Figure 5, the kinetics of methylene blue (MB) dye uptake among the various FF samples adopt the following trend: FF-125 ≥ FF-210 > FF-420 > FF-R. The faster dye uptake kinetics relate to samples with greater surface area due to the greater abundance of surface functional groups and the enhanced microporous nature of the material, as supported by SEM, XPS, and FT-IR results. In contrast, the raw material (FF-R) is characterized by a biomass surface with limited functional groups and porosity. Similar kinetic profiles for the FF-R and FF-420 samples at t ≤ 1 h indicate that the structures of these samples are similar, in agreement with their similar pore structure and surface properties estimated from the N2 uptake isotherms, as shown in Table 1. The increased kinetics for the FF-420 sample at t > 1 h relative to the FF-R sample indicate an improved accessibility of the micropore structure of the milled samples, where diffusion of the dye is greater and adsorption within the pore domains prevails at longer time intervals. The relative hydration state of the flax biomass can be inferred from the kinetic dye uptake results shown in Figure 5 because of the hydrophilic nature of MB and its affinity to the polar heteroatom sites of the fiber surface. (46) A study of FF materials immersed in liquid water (and with water vapor) under equilibrium conditions is presented to afford a complementary understanding of the role of sorption in the hydration properties (vide infra) of this biomass.

Figure 5

Figure 5. Methylene blue (MB) dye adsorption by FF biomass with variable mechanical milling under kinetic conditions at ambient temperature and pH.

3.2.1. TGA of Dry and Hydrated FFs

In spite of the structural complexity of bound water at biopolymer surfaces, thermoanalytical (DSC and TGA) methods and spectroscopic (NMR, FT-IR, and Raman) techniques provide useful information about the molecular level details of hydration phenomena for biopolymer-solvent systems. (23,24) In the case of DSC and TGA, unique thermal profiles of free and bound (weak vs strong) water provide complementary insight into biopolymer hydration. The DSC profiles of the raw and milled materials are shown in Figure 6a, where the DSC traces reveal broader dehydration transitions at higher temperature for the modified FF samples versus FF-R. The broader transitions for the milled samples suggest that the bound water exists in an ensemble of micro-environments that concurs with the amorphous nature of the biomass, in agreement with the PXRD results. Despite the reduced crystallinity of the ground samples, the appearance of the DSC profiles at higher temperatures is more evident for the FF-125 sample. These results provide support that the milled biomass samples have greater hydrophilicity upon mechanical treatment that affords greater accessibility of the surface functional groups, as supported by the FT-IR and XPS results. The biomass hydration properties are governed by several factors: (1) surface accessibility of functional groups, (2) greater SA and pore structure that favor water sorption, and (3) suitable functional groups that favor biomass–water interactions. The greater fwhm/peak areas of the modified samples in the DSC profiles indicate that the fiber materials have greater affinity for water because of enhanced textural and surface functional properties, consistent with the greater change in dehydration enthalpy (ΔHdeh) which concurs with the SEM, PXRD, and nitrogen adsorption results.

Figure 6

Figure 6. Thermal analyses of the raw and mechanically milled samples: (a) DSC thermograms of hydrated biomass in H2O (l) at equilibrium and (b) TGA spectra of hydrated samples at equilibrium and in the dry state.

Similar to the DSC results, the TGA profiles in Figure 6b indicate that greater weight loss occurs for the wet/dry milled materials (FF-R > FF-420 > FF-210 > FF-125) because of dehydration effects. The results indicate that the FF-125 sample has the greatest water binding affinity, in agreement with its greater hydrophilic character, as supported by the DSC and XPS results. In general, the thermal degradation of lignocellulosic natural fibers involves several thermal events: (47) release of bound water (50–150 °C), degradation/depolymerization of hemicellulose (250–370 °C), and degradation of α-cellulose (340–370 °C) and lignins (200–500 °C). The additional event at ∼300 °C for the milled samples in the dry state supports that the presence of greater fractions of hemicellulose/pectin occur at the surface of the treated biomass, in agreement with FT-IR results. It is noteworthy that the dry FF-R sample decomposes at a slightly higher temperature according to the TGA results because milling is inferred to degrade the biomass assembly. This trend occurs according to the lower decomposition temperatures of FF-420, -210, and -125 samples. (48) It is noteworthy that the diminishing trend in the weight losses occur because of the decomposition of the FFs ∼300–350 °C in the wet state, as observed in Figure 6b. The greater hydration of the mechanically modified biomass contributes to the disruption of intermolecular H bonding that results in a reduced decomposition temperature (cf. Figure 6b). (24)

3.2.2. Water Swelling and Retention Values

The thermogravimetric profiles described above were complemented by gravimetric swelling of the FF biomass in water in order to assess the ability of the flax biomass to retain sorbed water (Figure 7). The greater swelling and WRVs in Figure 7 (FF-125 > FF-210 > FF-420 > FF-R) reveal unique trends that parallel the greater hydrophilicity and hydration of the modified materials. These observations corroborate the DSC/TGA results, where parallel trends are noted for the greater surface/textural properties and amorphous nature of the modified FF samples. Also, this trend is supported by the XPS, SEM, gas/dye adsorption, and PXRD results. According to the DSC/TGA results, the FF-125 sample was characterized by tightly bound water in contrast to the weakly bound water for the FF-R sample. The thermal analysis results are further supported by the WRV results shown in Figure 7. The greater swelling of the mechanically modified flax materials indicates that the crystallinity of the biomass fiber structure affects the water uptake and hydration properties, in agreement with the greater amorphous (fibrillated) nature of the milled samples. (49) As indicated, the modification of FFs by milling attenuates the specific SA (cf. Table 1).

Figure 7

Figure 7. Gravimetric solvent (water) swelling and WRVs of pristine and modified FFs.

However, solvent swelling in water is anticipated to result in a marked increase in the “apparent” SA because of hydration-induced structural changes in the biomass. (50) Adsorption studies of the various flax materials in the presence of water vapor provide further insights into the hydration properties. As such, hydration properties are of key importance to applications for adsorption-based energy wheels in HVAC systems.
The vapor adsorption isotherms and the related adsorption parameters are listed in Table 3, based on results presented in Figure 8. In general, the S-shaped isotherms shown in Figure 8 correspond to the classification system described by the BET model that describe trends noted for cellulose-based hydrophilic materials. (7) The greater moisture capacity for the milled FFs are higher: FF-420 (Qm ≈ 4.92 g/g), FF-210 (Qm ≈ 5.26 g/g), and FF-125 (Qm ≈ 5.32 g/g), when compared to the pristine FF-R material (Qm ≈ 4.26 g/g). Moreover, the binding affinity (KBET) values for the milled samples exceed those of the pristine FF-R (cf. Table 3) that further supports an increase in the textural properties, along with greater surface accessibility of the functional groups for the milled samples. It has been shown that modification of biomass by acetylation reduces the moisture uptake of the modified materials by up to 65%, (29) indicating the key role of accessible polar active sites for water uptake (Table 3).

Figure 8

Figure 8. Water vapor adsorption isotherms and the uptake parameters for the raw and modified FF samples.

Table 3. Water Vapor Adsorption Isotherms and Adsorption Parameters for the Raw and Modified FF Samples at 298 K
FF-samples:FF-RFF-420FF-210FF-125
Qm (g/g)4.264.925.265.32
KBET (L/mol)5.349.8910.210.5
C1.151.171.171.16
R20.9930.9980.9990.999
reduced (χ2)0.3920.1040.05750.104
SA (m2/g)153177183191

4. Conclusions

ARTICLE SECTIONS
Jump To

This contribution reports on a study of the structural and physicochemical properties of FF-R and modified forms, according to variable levels of mechanical milling and grinding. The modified FFs were sieved through various mesh sizes (420, 210, and 125 μm) denoted as FF-420, FF-210, and FF-125, respectively. The structural features of the FF-R and mechanically modified forms (FF-420, -210, and -125) reveal differing surface chemistry and textural properties (SA and pore structure) according to several complementary techniques: microscopy (SEM), spectroscopy (FT-IR, XPS, and PXRD), and thermal analyses (DSC and TGA). The adsorption properties of the materials were assessed using solvent (water) swelling and adsorption isotherms using nitrogen gas, water vapor, and a hydrophilic dye probe in aqueous solution. The hydration properties of the FF biomass are governed by several factors: (1) the textural properties (SA and pore structure), (2) surface properties (e.g., surface charge), and (3) the availability of accessible surface sites, as revealed by the complementary methods reported herein. Gravimetric water swelling, WRV, and vapor adsorption results provide further support that size reduction of FFs upon milling is accompanied by changes in physicochemical properties such as surface charge, crystallinity, thermal stability, morphology, and accessibility of surface functional groups. Because natural FFs are composed of various biopolymer components (cellulose, hemicellulose, pectins, and lignins) with variable composition and C/OH ratios, changes in the chemical composition are anticipated upon mechanical grinding of the fibers because of changes in the particle size and fiber fibrillation effects. Consequently, alteration of the structure and physicochemical properties of the milled flax samples results in significant changes to their hydration properties, as evidenced by the enhanced water affinity for both the liquid and vapor. A key outcome of this study reveals that mechanical milling of flax biomass contributes to valorization of fibers to yield biomaterials with tunable physicochemical properties. In turn, promising applications of agricultural biomass waste are anticipated in energy, food, biomedicine, and adsorbents for environmental remediation. (51)

Supporting Information

ARTICLE SECTIONS
Jump To

The Supporting Information is available free of charge at https://pubs.acs.org/doi/10.1021/acsomega.0c00100.

  • Additional description of XPS results for composition and bond energy for raw and modified FFs (PDF)

Terms & Conditions

Most electronic Supporting Information files are available without a subscription to ACS Web Editions. Such files may be downloaded by article for research use (if there is a public use license linked to the relevant article, that license may permit other uses). Permission may be obtained from ACS for other uses through requests via the RightsLink permission system: http://pubs.acs.org/page/copyright/permissions.html.

Author Information

ARTICLE SECTIONS
Jump To

  • Corresponding Author
  • Authors
    • Abdalla H. Karoyo - Department of Chemistry, University of Saskatchewan, 110 Science Place, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan S7N 5C9, Canada
    • Leila Dehabadi - Dr. Ma’s Laboratories, Inc., Unit 4, 8118 North Fraser Way, Burnaby, British Columbia V5J 0E5, Canada
    • Wahab Alabi - Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Saskatchewan, 57 Campus Drive, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan S7N 5A9, Canada
    • Carey J. Simonson - Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Saskatchewan, 57 Campus Drive, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan S7N 5A9, Canadahttp://orcid.org/0000-0003-3331-9184
  • Notes
    The authors declare no competing financial interest.

Acknowledgments

ARTICLE SECTIONS
Jump To

The Government of Saskatchewan (Ministry of Agriculture and the Canadian Agriculture Partnership), through the Agriculture Development Fund (Project #20160266), is gratefully acknowledged for supporting this research. Alvin Ulrich at Biolin Research Inc. is kindly acknowledged for provision of flax fibers for this research. A.H.K. acknowledges Danielle Covelli for her expert technical assistance with the XPS measurements.

References

ARTICLE SECTIONS
Jump To

This article references 51 other publications.

  1. 1
    Water Relationships in Foods: Advances in the 1980s and Trends for the 1990s; Levine, H., Slade, L., Eds.; Springer Science: New York, 1989.
  2. 2
    Goyal, A.; Sharma, V.; Upadhyay, N.; Gill, S.; Sihag, M. Flax and Flaxseed Oil: An Ancient Medicine & Modern Functional Food. J. Food Sci. Technol. 2014, 51, 16331653,  DOI: 10.1007/s13197-013-1247-9
  3. 3
    Peças, P.; Carvalho, H.; Salman, H.; Leite, M. Natural Fibre Composites and Their Applications: A Review. J. Compos. Sci. 2018, 2, 6686,  DOI: 10.3390/jcs2040066
  4. 4
    Lee, S. G.; Choi, S.-S.; Park, W. H.; Cho, D. Characterization of Surface Modified Flax Fibers and Their Biocomposites with PHB. Macromol. Symp. 2003, 197, 089100,  DOI: 10.1002/masy.200350709
  5. 5
    Wang, B.; Panigrahi, S.; Tabil, L.; Crerar, W.; Sokansanj, S.; Braun, L. Modification of Flax Fibres by Chemical Treatment; Csae/Scgr, 2003, no. 03-337; pp 115.
  6. 6
    Rahmani, H.; Najafi, S. H. M.; Saffarzadeh-Matin, S.; Ashori, A. Mechanical Properties of Carbon Fiber/Epoxy Composites: Effects of Number of Plies, Fiber Contents, and Angle-Ply Layers. Polym. Eng. Sci. 2014, 54, 26762682,  DOI: 10.1002/pen.23820
  7. 7
    Gouanvé, F.; Marais, S.; Bessadok, A.; Langevin, D.; Morvan, C.; Métayer, M. Study of Water Sorption in Modified Flax Fibers. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 2006, 101, 42814289,  DOI: 10.1002/app.23661
  8. 8
    Lee, J.-S.; Kang, T.-J. Changes in Physico-Chemical and Morphological Properties of Carbon Fiber by Surface Treatment. Carbon 1997, 35, 209216,  DOI: 10.1016/S0008-6223(96)00138-8
  9. 9
    Hill, C. A. S.; Norton, A.; Newman, G. The Water Vapor Sorption Behavior of Natural Fibers. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 2009, 112, 15241537,  DOI: 10.1002/app.29725
  10. 10
    Das, B.; Das, A.; Kothari, V. K.; Fanguiero, R.; De Araújo, M. Moisture Transmission Through Textiles Part I: Processes Involved in Moisture Transmission and the Factors at Play. Autex Res. J. 2007, 7, 100110
  11. 11
    Assaf, A. G.; Haas, R. H.; Purves, C. B. A Study of the Amorphous Portion of Dry, Swollen Cellulose by an Improved Thallous Ethylate Method1,2. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 1944, 66, 5965,  DOI: 10.1021/ja01229a019
  12. 12
    Célino, A.; Fréour, S.; Jacquemin, F.; Casari, P. The hygroscopic behavior of plant fibers: A review. Front. Chem. 2013, 1, 112,  DOI: 10.3389/fchem.2013.00043
  13. 13
    Styrczewska, M.; Kulma, A.; Ratajczak, K.; Amarowicz, R.; Szopa, J. Cannabinoid-like Anti-Inflammatory Compounds from Flax Fiber. Cell. Mol. Biol. Lett. 2012, 17, 479499,  DOI: 10.2478/s11658-012-0023-6
  14. 14
    Paladini, F.; Picca, R. A.; Sportelli, M. C.; Cioffi, N.; Sannino, A.; Pollini, M. Surface Chemical and Biological Characterization of Flax Fabrics Modified with Silver Nanoparticles for Biomedical Applications. Mater. Sci. Eng., C 2015, 52, 110,  DOI: 10.1016/j.msec.2015.03.035
  15. 15
    Rahman, N. S. A.; Yhaya, M. F.; Azahari, B.; Ismail, W. R. Utilisation of Natural Cellulose Fibres in Wastewater Treatment. Cellulose 2018, 25, 48874903,  DOI: 10.1007/s10570-018-1935-8
  16. 16
    Kyzas, G.; Christodoulou, E.; Bikiaris, D. Basic Dye Removal with Sorption onto Low-Cost Natural Textile Fibers. Processes 2018, 6, 166,  DOI: 10.3390/pr6090166
  17. 17
    Jiang, X.; He, S.; Li, S.; Bai, Y.; Shao, L. Penetrating Chains Mimicking Plant Root Branching to Build Mechanically Robust, Ultra-Stable CO2-Philic Membranes for Superior Carbon Capture. J. Mater. Chem. A 2019, 7, 1670416711,  DOI: 10.1039/c9ta03416a
  18. 18
    Crini, G.; Lichtfouse, E.; Wilson, L. D.; Morin-Crini, N. Adsorption-Oriented Processes Using Conventional and Non-Conventional Adsorbents for Wastewater Treatment. In Green Adsorbents for Pollutant Removal: Fundamentals and Design; Crini, G., Lichtfouse, E., Eds.; Springer: Switzerland, 2018; Chapter 2, pp 2371.
  19. 19
    Pocker, Y. Water in Enzyme Reactions: Biophysical Aspects of Hydration-Dehydration Processes. CMLS, Cell. Mol. Life Sci. 2000, 57, 10081017,  DOI: 10.1007/PL00000741
  20. 20
    Finney, J. L. Overview lecture. Hydration processes in biological and macromolecular systems. Faraday Discuss. 1996, 103, 118,  DOI: 10.1039/FD9960300001
  21. 21
    Hydration Processes in Biology; Bellissent-Funel, M.-C., Ed.; IOS Press: Amsterdam, The Netherlands, 1999.
  22. 22
    Durchschlag, H.; Zipper, P. Comparative Investigations of Biopolymer Hydration by Physicochemical and Modeling Techniques. Biophys. Chem. 2001, 93, 141157,  DOI: 10.1016/S0301-4622(01)00217-4
  23. 23
    Dehabadi, L.; Udoetok, I. A.; Wilson, L. D. Macromolecular Hydration Phenomena. J. Therm. Anal. Calorim. 2016, 126, 18511866,  DOI: 10.1007/s10973-016-5673-6
  24. 24
    Dehabadi, L.; Karoyo, A. H.; Wilson, L. D. Spectroscopic and Thermodynamic Study of Biopolymer Adsorption Phenomena in Heterogeneous Solid-Liquid Systems. ACS Omega 2018, 3, 1537015379,  DOI: 10.1021/acsomega.8b01663
  25. 25
    Csiszár, E.; Fekete, E.; Tóth, A.; Bandi, É.; Koczka, B.; Sajó, I. Effect of Particle Size on the Surface Properties and Morphology of Ground Flax. Carbohydr. Polym. 2013, 94, 927933,  DOI: 10.1016/j.carbpol.2013.02.026
  26. 26
    Yan, L.; Chouw, N.; Jayaraman, K. Flax Fibre and Its Composites - A Review. Composites, Part B 2014, 56, 296317,  DOI: 10.1016/j.compositesb.2013.08.014
  27. 27
    Morrison, W. H.; Archibald, D. D.; Sharma, H. S. S.; Akin, D. E. Chemical and Physical Characterization of Water- and Dew-Retted Flax Fibers. Ind. Crops Prod. 2000, 12, 3946,  DOI: 10.1016/S0926-6690(99)00044-8
  28. 28
    Sreekala, M. S.; Kumaran, M. G.; Joseph, S.; Jacob, M.; Thomas, S. Oil Palm Fibre Reinforced Phenol Formaldehyde Composites: Influence of Fibre Surface Modifications on the Mechanical Performance. Appl. Compos. Mater. 2000, 7, 295329,  DOI: 10.1023/A:1026534006291
  29. 29
    Bledzki, A.; Gassan, J. Composites Reinforced with Cellulose Based Fibres. Prog. Polym. Sci. 1999, 24, 221274,  DOI: 10.1016/S0079-6700(98)00018-5
  30. 30
    Skórkowska-Telichowska, K. The Effect of a New Type of Dressing for Chronic Venous Wounds. Br. J. Med. Med. Res. 2014, 4, 24632469,  DOI: 10.9734/bjmmr/2014/5584
  31. 31
    Sen, T.; Reddy, H. N. J. Various Industrial Applications of Hemp, Kinaf, Flax and Ramie Natural Fibres. Int. J. Innovat. Technol. Manag. 2011, 2, 192198
  32. 32
    Angelova, V.; Ivanova, R.; Delibaltova, V.; Ivanov, K. Bio-Accumulation and Distribution of Heavy Metals in Fibre Crops (Flax, Cotton and Hemp). Ind. Crops Prod. 2004, 19, 197205,  DOI: 10.1016/j.indcrop.2003.10.001
  33. 33
    Mohamed, M. H.; Udoetok, I. A.; Wilson, L. D.; Headley, J. V. Fractionation of Carboxylate Anions from Aqueous Solution Using Chitosan Cross-Linked Sorbent Materials. RSC Adv. 2015, 5, 8206582077,  DOI: 10.1039/C5RA13981C
  34. 34
    Mohamed, M.; Wilson, L. Kinetic Uptake Studies of Powdered Materials in Solution. Nanomaterials 2015, 5, 969980,  DOI: 10.3390/nano5020969
  35. 35
    Ray, D.; Sarkar, B. K. Characterization of Alkali-Treated Jute Fibers for Physical and Mechanical Properties. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 2001, 80, 10131020,  DOI: 10.1002/app.1184
  36. 36
    Eichhorn, S. J.; Sampson, W. W. Relationships between Specific Surface Area and Pore Size in Electrospun Polymer Fibre Networks. J. R. Soc., Interface 2010, 7, 641649,  DOI: 10.1098/rsif.2009.0374
  37. 37
    Grosman, A.; Ortega, C. Capillary Condensation in Porous Materials. Hysteresis and Interaction without Pore Blocking / Percolation Process. Langmuir 2008, 24, 39773986,  DOI: 10.1021/la703978v
  38. 38
    Csiszár, E.; Fekete, E. Microstructure and Surface Properties of Fibrous and Ground Cellulosic Substrates. Langmuir 2011, 27, 84448450,  DOI: 10.1021/la201039a
  39. 39
    Matuana, L. M.; Balatinecz, J. J.; Sodhi, R. N. S.; Park, C. B. Surface Characterization of Esterified Cellulosic Fibers by XPS and FTIR Spectroscopy. Wood Sci. Technol. 2001, 35, 191201,  DOI: 10.1007/s002260100097
  40. 40
    Erdem, B.; Hunsicker, R. A.; Simmons, G. W.; Sudol, E. D.; Dimonie, V. L.; El-Aasser, M. S. XPS and FTIR Surface Characterization of TiO2 Particles Used in Polymer Encapsulation. Langmuir 2001, 17, 26642669,  DOI: 10.1021/la0015213
  41. 41
    Raj, G.; Balnois, E.; Baley, C.; Grohens, Y. Role of Polysaccharides on Mechanical and Adhesion Properties of Flax Fibres in Flax/PLA Biocomposite. Int. J. Polym. Sci. 2011, 2011, 503940,  DOI: 10.1155/2011/503940
  42. 42
    Garside, P.; Wyeth, P. Identification of Cellulosic Fibres by FTIR Spectroscopy: Thread and Single Fibre Analysis by Attenuated Total Reflectance. Stud. Conserv. 2003, 48, 269275,  DOI: 10.1179/sic.2003.48.4.269
  43. 43
    Kim, J. T.; Netravali, A. N. Mercerization of Sisal Fibers: Effect of Tension on Mechanical Properties of Sisal Fiber and Fiber-Reinforced Composites. Composites, Part A 2010, 41, 12451252,  DOI: 10.1016/j.compositesa.2010.05.007
  44. 44
    Truss, R. W.; Wood, B.; Rasch, R. Quantitative Surface Analysis of Hemp Fibers Using XPS, Conventional and Low Voltage in-Lens SEM. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 2016, 133, 4302343031,  DOI: 10.1002/app.43023
  45. 45
    Liang, Q.; Chai, K.; Lu, K.; Xu, Z.; Li, G.; Tong, Z.; Ji, H. Theoretical and Experimental Studies on the Separation of Cinnamyl Acetate and Cinnamaldehyde by Adsorption onto a β-Cyclodextrin Polyurethane Polymer. RSC Adv. 2017, 7, 4350243511,  DOI: 10.1039/c7ra07813g
  46. 46
    Mohamed, M. H.; Dolatkhah, A.; Aboumourad, T.; Dehabadi, L.; Wilson, L. D. Investigation of Templated and Supported Polyaniline Adsorbent Materials. RSC Adv. 2015, 5, 69766984,  DOI: 10.1039/C4RA07412B
  47. 47
    Dorez, G.; Taguet, A.; Ferry, L.; Lopez-Cuesta, J. M. Thermal and Fire Behavior of Natural Fibers/PBS Biocomposites. Polym. Degrad. Stab. 2013, 98, 8795,  DOI: 10.1016/j.polymdegradstab.2012.10.026
  48. 48
    Van De Velde, K.; Kiekens, P. Thermal Degradation of Flax: The Determination of Kinetic Parameters with Thermogravimetric Analysis. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 2002, 83, 26342643,  DOI: 10.1002/app.10229
  49. 49
    Mihranyan, A.; Llagostera, A. P.; Karmhag, R.; Strømme, M.; Ek, R. Moisture Sorption by Cellulose Powders of Varying Crystallinity. Int. J. Pharm. 2004, 269, 433442,  DOI: 10.1016/j.ijpharm.2003.09.030
  50. 50
    Bismarck, A.; Aranberri-Askargorta, I.; Springer, J. r.; Lampke, T.; Wielage, B.; Stamboulis, A.; Shenderovich, I.; Limbach, H.-H. Surface Characterization of Flax, Hemp and Cellulose Fibers; Surface Properties and the Water Uptake Behavior. Polym. Compos. 2002, 23, 872894,  DOI: 10.1002/pc.10485
  51. 51
    Mohamed, M. H.; Udoetok, I. A.; Wilson, L. D. Animal Biopolymer-Plant Biomass Composites: Synergism and Improved Sorption Efficiency. J. Compos. Sci. 2020, 4, 15,  DOI: 10.3390/jcs4010015

Cited By


This article is cited by 6 publications.

  1. Wahab O. Alabi, Abdalla H. Karoyo, Easwaran N. Krishnan, Leila Dehabadi, Lee D. Wilson, Carey J. Simonson. Comparison of the Moisture Adsorption Properties of Starch Particles and Flax Fiber Coatings for Energy Wheel Applications. ACS Omega 2020, 5 (16) , 9529-9539. https://doi.org/10.1021/acsomega.0c00762
  2. Ping Cheng, Kui Wang, Xuanzhen Chen, Jin Wang, Yong Peng, Said Ahzi, Chao Chen. Interfacial and mechanical properties of continuous ramie fiber reinforced biocomposites fabricated by in-situ impregnated 3D printing. Industrial Crops and Products 2021, 170 , 113760. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.indcrop.2021.113760
  3. Wahab O. Alabi, Easwaran N. Krishnan, Abdalla H. Karoyo, Leila Dehabadi, Lee D. Wilson, Carey J. Simonson. Suitability of bio-desiccants for energy wheels in HVAC applications. Building and Environment 2021, 120 , 108369. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.buildenv.2021.108369
  4. Chiara Mongioví, Nadia Morin-Crini, Dario Lacalamita, Corina Bradu, Marina Raschetti, Vincent Placet, Ana Rita Lado Ribeiro, Aleksandra Ivanovska, Mirjana Kostić, Grégorio Crini. Biosorbents from Plant Fibers of Hemp and Flax for Metal Removal: Comparison of Their Biosorption Properties. Molecules 2021, 26 (14) , 4199. https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules26144199
  5. Wahab O. Alabi, Hui Wang, Bukola M. Adesanmi, Mohsen Shakouri, Yongfeng Hu. Support composition effect on the structures, metallic sites formation, and performance of Ni-Co-Mg-Al-O composite for CO2 reforming of CH4. Journal of CO2 Utilization 2021, 43 , 101355. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jcou.2020.101355
  6. Leila Dehabadi, Abdalla H. Karoyo, Majid Soleimani, Wahab O. Alabi, Carey J. Simonson, Lee D. Wilson. Flax Biomass Conversion via Controlled Oxidation: Facile Tuning of Physicochemical Properties. Bioengineering 2020, 7 (2) , 38. https://doi.org/10.3390/bioengineering7020038
  • Abstract

    Figure 1

    Figure 1. SEM micrographs of FF-R and the modified materials: FF-420, FF-210, and FF-125, obtained at low (30×) and high (1.5k×) magnification.

    Figure 2

    Figure 2. N2 adsorption isotherms of raw and milled flax plotted as the amount of N2 adsorbed as a function of relative pressure at 295 K.

    Figure 3

    Figure 3. X-ray diffraction spectra of the raw and mechanically modified FF samples.

    Figure 4

    Figure 4. (a) FT-IR and (b) XPS spectra of the raw and mechanically modified FF samples. The expanded bonding energy region for N 1s ca. 400 eV is shown as an inset.

    Figure 5

    Figure 5. Methylene blue (MB) dye adsorption by FF biomass with variable mechanical milling under kinetic conditions at ambient temperature and pH.

    Figure 6

    Figure 6. Thermal analyses of the raw and mechanically milled samples: (a) DSC thermograms of hydrated biomass in H2O (l) at equilibrium and (b) TGA spectra of hydrated samples at equilibrium and in the dry state.

    Figure 7

    Figure 7. Gravimetric solvent (water) swelling and WRVs of pristine and modified FFs.

    Figure 8

    Figure 8. Water vapor adsorption isotherms and the uptake parameters for the raw and modified FF samples.

  • References

    ARTICLE SECTIONS
    Jump To

    This article references 51 other publications.

    1. 1
      Water Relationships in Foods: Advances in the 1980s and Trends for the 1990s; Levine, H., Slade, L., Eds.; Springer Science: New York, 1989.
    2. 2
      Goyal, A.; Sharma, V.; Upadhyay, N.; Gill, S.; Sihag, M. Flax and Flaxseed Oil: An Ancient Medicine & Modern Functional Food. J. Food Sci. Technol. 2014, 51, 16331653,  DOI: 10.1007/s13197-013-1247-9
    3. 3
      Peças, P.; Carvalho, H.; Salman, H.; Leite, M. Natural Fibre Composites and Their Applications: A Review. J. Compos. Sci. 2018, 2, 6686,  DOI: 10.3390/jcs2040066
    4. 4
      Lee, S. G.; Choi, S.-S.; Park, W. H.; Cho, D. Characterization of Surface Modified Flax Fibers and Their Biocomposites with PHB. Macromol. Symp. 2003, 197, 089100,  DOI: 10.1002/masy.200350709
    5. 5
      Wang, B.; Panigrahi, S.; Tabil, L.; Crerar, W.; Sokansanj, S.; Braun, L. Modification of Flax Fibres by Chemical Treatment; Csae/Scgr, 2003, no. 03-337; pp 115.
    6. 6
      Rahmani, H.; Najafi, S. H. M.; Saffarzadeh-Matin, S.; Ashori, A. Mechanical Properties of Carbon Fiber/Epoxy Composites: Effects of Number of Plies, Fiber Contents, and Angle-Ply Layers. Polym. Eng. Sci. 2014, 54, 26762682,  DOI: 10.1002/pen.23820
    7. 7
      Gouanvé, F.; Marais, S.; Bessadok, A.; Langevin, D.; Morvan, C.; Métayer, M. Study of Water Sorption in Modified Flax Fibers. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 2006, 101, 42814289,  DOI: 10.1002/app.23661
    8. 8
      Lee, J.-S.; Kang, T.-J. Changes in Physico-Chemical and Morphological Properties of Carbon Fiber by Surface Treatment. Carbon 1997, 35, 209216,  DOI: 10.1016/S0008-6223(96)00138-8
    9. 9
      Hill, C. A. S.; Norton, A.; Newman, G. The Water Vapor Sorption Behavior of Natural Fibers. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 2009, 112, 15241537,  DOI: 10.1002/app.29725
    10. 10
      Das, B.; Das, A.; Kothari, V. K.; Fanguiero, R.; De Araújo, M. Moisture Transmission Through Textiles Part I: Processes Involved in Moisture Transmission and the Factors at Play. Autex Res. J. 2007, 7, 100110
    11. 11
      Assaf, A. G.; Haas, R. H.; Purves, C. B. A Study of the Amorphous Portion of Dry, Swollen Cellulose by an Improved Thallous Ethylate Method1,2. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 1944, 66, 5965,  DOI: 10.1021/ja01229a019
    12. 12
      Célino, A.; Fréour, S.; Jacquemin, F.; Casari, P. The hygroscopic behavior of plant fibers: A review. Front. Chem. 2013, 1, 112,  DOI: 10.3389/fchem.2013.00043
    13. 13
      Styrczewska, M.; Kulma, A.; Ratajczak, K.; Amarowicz, R.; Szopa, J. Cannabinoid-like Anti-Inflammatory Compounds from Flax Fiber. Cell. Mol. Biol. Lett. 2012, 17, 479499,  DOI: 10.2478/s11658-012-0023-6
    14. 14
      Paladini, F.; Picca, R. A.; Sportelli, M. C.; Cioffi, N.; Sannino, A.; Pollini, M. Surface Chemical and Biological Characterization of Flax Fabrics Modified with Silver Nanoparticles for Biomedical Applications. Mater. Sci. Eng., C 2015, 52, 110,  DOI: 10.1016/j.msec.2015.03.035
    15. 15
      Rahman, N. S. A.; Yhaya, M. F.; Azahari, B.; Ismail, W. R. Utilisation of Natural Cellulose Fibres in Wastewater Treatment. Cellulose 2018, 25, 48874903,  DOI: 10.1007/s10570-018-1935-8
    16. 16
      Kyzas, G.; Christodoulou, E.; Bikiaris, D. Basic Dye Removal with Sorption onto Low-Cost Natural Textile Fibers. Processes 2018, 6, 166,  DOI: 10.3390/pr6090166
    17. 17
      Jiang, X.; He, S.; Li, S.; Bai, Y.; Shao, L. Penetrating Chains Mimicking Plant Root Branching to Build Mechanically Robust, Ultra-Stable CO2-Philic Membranes for Superior Carbon Capture. J. Mater. Chem. A 2019, 7, 1670416711,  DOI: 10.1039/c9ta03416a
    18. 18
      Crini, G.; Lichtfouse, E.; Wilson, L. D.; Morin-Crini, N. Adsorption-Oriented Processes Using Conventional and Non-Conventional Adsorbents for Wastewater Treatment. In Green Adsorbents for Pollutant Removal: Fundamentals and Design; Crini, G., Lichtfouse, E., Eds.; Springer: Switzerland, 2018; Chapter 2, pp 2371.
    19. 19
      Pocker, Y. Water in Enzyme Reactions: Biophysical Aspects of Hydration-Dehydration Processes. CMLS, Cell. Mol. Life Sci. 2000, 57, 10081017,  DOI: 10.1007/PL00000741
    20. 20
      Finney, J. L. Overview lecture. Hydration processes in biological and macromolecular systems. Faraday Discuss. 1996, 103, 118,  DOI: 10.1039/FD9960300001
    21. 21
      Hydration Processes in Biology; Bellissent-Funel, M.-C., Ed.; IOS Press: Amsterdam, The Netherlands, 1999.
    22. 22
      Durchschlag, H.; Zipper, P. Comparative Investigations of Biopolymer Hydration by Physicochemical and Modeling Techniques. Biophys. Chem. 2001, 93, 141157,  DOI: 10.1016/S0301-4622(01)00217-4
    23. 23
      Dehabadi, L.; Udoetok, I. A.; Wilson, L. D. Macromolecular Hydration Phenomena. J. Therm. Anal. Calorim. 2016, 126, 18511866,  DOI: 10.1007/s10973-016-5673-6
    24. 24
      Dehabadi, L.; Karoyo, A. H.; Wilson, L. D. Spectroscopic and Thermodynamic Study of Biopolymer Adsorption Phenomena in Heterogeneous Solid-Liquid Systems. ACS Omega 2018, 3, 1537015379,  DOI: 10.1021/acsomega.8b01663
    25. 25
      Csiszár, E.; Fekete, E.; Tóth, A.; Bandi, É.; Koczka, B.; Sajó, I. Effect of Particle Size on the Surface Properties and Morphology of Ground Flax. Carbohydr. Polym. 2013, 94, 927933,  DOI: 10.1016/j.carbpol.2013.02.026
    26. 26
      Yan, L.; Chouw, N.; Jayaraman, K. Flax Fibre and Its Composites - A Review. Composites, Part B 2014, 56, 296317,  DOI: 10.1016/j.compositesb.2013.08.014
    27. 27
      Morrison, W. H.; Archibald, D. D.; Sharma, H. S. S.; Akin, D. E. Chemical and Physical Characterization of Water- and Dew-Retted Flax Fibers. Ind. Crops Prod. 2000, 12, 3946,  DOI: 10.1016/S0926-6690(99)00044-8
    28. 28
      Sreekala, M. S.; Kumaran, M. G.; Joseph, S.; Jacob, M.; Thomas, S. Oil Palm Fibre Reinforced Phenol Formaldehyde Composites: Influence of Fibre Surface Modifications on the Mechanical Performance. Appl. Compos. Mater. 2000, 7, 295329,  DOI: 10.1023/A:1026534006291
    29. 29
      Bledzki, A.; Gassan, J. Composites Reinforced with Cellulose Based Fibres. Prog. Polym. Sci. 1999, 24, 221274,  DOI: 10.1016/S0079-6700(98)00018-5
    30. 30
      Skórkowska-Telichowska, K. The Effect of a New Type of Dressing for Chronic Venous Wounds. Br. J. Med. Med. Res. 2014, 4, 24632469,  DOI: 10.9734/bjmmr/2014/5584
    31. 31
      Sen, T.; Reddy, H. N. J. Various Industrial Applications of Hemp, Kinaf, Flax and Ramie Natural Fibres. Int. J. Innovat. Technol. Manag. 2011, 2, 192198
    32. 32
      Angelova, V.; Ivanova, R.; Delibaltova, V.; Ivanov, K. Bio-Accumulation and Distribution of Heavy Metals in Fibre Crops (Flax, Cotton and Hemp). Ind. Crops Prod. 2004, 19, 197205,  DOI: 10.1016/j.indcrop.2003.10.001
    33. 33
      Mohamed, M. H.; Udoetok, I. A.; Wilson, L. D.; Headley, J. V. Fractionation of Carboxylate Anions from Aqueous Solution Using Chitosan Cross-Linked Sorbent Materials. RSC Adv. 2015, 5, 8206582077,  DOI: 10.1039/C5RA13981C
    34. 34
      Mohamed, M.; Wilson, L. Kinetic Uptake Studies of Powdered Materials in Solution. Nanomaterials 2015, 5, 969980,  DOI: 10.3390/nano5020969
    35. 35
      Ray, D.; Sarkar, B. K. Characterization of Alkali-Treated Jute Fibers for Physical and Mechanical Properties. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 2001, 80, 10131020,  DOI: 10.1002/app.1184
    36. 36
      Eichhorn, S. J.; Sampson, W. W. Relationships between Specific Surface Area and Pore Size in Electrospun Polymer Fibre Networks. J. R. Soc., Interface 2010, 7, 641649,  DOI: 10.1098/rsif.2009.0374
    37. 37
      Grosman, A.; Ortega, C. Capillary Condensation in Porous Materials. Hysteresis and Interaction without Pore Blocking / Percolation Process. Langmuir 2008, 24, 39773986,  DOI: 10.1021/la703978v
    38. 38
      Csiszár, E.; Fekete, E. Microstructure and Surface Properties of Fibrous and Ground Cellulosic Substrates. Langmuir 2011, 27, 84448450,  DOI: 10.1021/la201039a
    39. 39
      Matuana, L. M.; Balatinecz, J. J.; Sodhi, R. N. S.; Park, C. B. Surface Characterization of Esterified Cellulosic Fibers by XPS and FTIR Spectroscopy. Wood Sci. Technol. 2001, 35, 191201,  DOI: 10.1007/s002260100097
    40. 40
      Erdem, B.; Hunsicker, R. A.; Simmons, G. W.; Sudol, E. D.; Dimonie, V. L.; El-Aasser, M. S. XPS and FTIR Surface Characterization of TiO2 Particles Used in Polymer Encapsulation. Langmuir 2001, 17, 26642669,  DOI: 10.1021/la0015213
    41. 41
      Raj, G.; Balnois, E.; Baley, C.; Grohens, Y. Role of Polysaccharides on Mechanical and Adhesion Properties of Flax Fibres in Flax/PLA Biocomposite. Int. J. Polym. Sci. 2011, 2011, 503940,  DOI: 10.1155/2011/503940
    42. 42
      Garside, P.; Wyeth, P. Identification of Cellulosic Fibres by FTIR Spectroscopy: Thread and Single Fibre Analysis by Attenuated Total Reflectance. Stud. Conserv. 2003, 48, 269275,  DOI: 10.1179/sic.2003.48.4.269
    43. 43
      Kim, J. T.; Netravali, A. N. Mercerization of Sisal Fibers: Effect of Tension on Mechanical Properties of Sisal Fiber and Fiber-Reinforced Composites. Composites, Part A 2010, 41, 12451252,  DOI: 10.1016/j.compositesa.2010.05.007
    44. 44
      Truss, R. W.; Wood, B.; Rasch, R. Quantitative Surface Analysis of Hemp Fibers Using XPS, Conventional and Low Voltage in-Lens SEM. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 2016, 133, 4302343031,  DOI: 10.1002/app.43023
    45. 45
      Liang, Q.; Chai, K.; Lu, K.; Xu, Z.; Li, G.; Tong, Z.; Ji, H. Theoretical and Experimental Studies on the Separation of Cinnamyl Acetate and Cinnamaldehyde by Adsorption onto a β-Cyclodextrin Polyurethane Polymer. RSC Adv. 2017, 7, 4350243511,  DOI: 10.1039/c7ra07813g
    46. 46
      Mohamed, M. H.; Dolatkhah, A.; Aboumourad, T.; Dehabadi, L.; Wilson, L. D. Investigation of Templated and Supported Polyaniline Adsorbent Materials. RSC Adv. 2015, 5, 69766984,  DOI: 10.1039/C4RA07412B
    47. 47
      Dorez, G.; Taguet, A.; Ferry, L.; Lopez-Cuesta, J. M. Thermal and Fire Behavior of Natural Fibers/PBS Biocomposites. Polym. Degrad. Stab. 2013, 98, 8795,  DOI: 10.1016/j.polymdegradstab.2012.10.026
    48. 48
      Van De Velde, K.; Kiekens, P. Thermal Degradation of Flax: The Determination of Kinetic Parameters with Thermogravimetric Analysis. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 2002, 83, 26342643,  DOI: 10.1002/app.10229
    49. 49
      Mihranyan, A.; Llagostera, A. P.; Karmhag, R.; Strømme, M.; Ek, R. Moisture Sorption by Cellulose Powders of Varying Crystallinity. Int. J. Pharm. 2004, 269, 433442,  DOI: 10.1016/j.ijpharm.2003.09.030
    50. 50
      Bismarck, A.; Aranberri-Askargorta, I.; Springer, J. r.; Lampke, T.; Wielage, B.; Stamboulis, A.; Shenderovich, I.; Limbach, H.-H. Surface Characterization of Flax, Hemp and Cellulose Fibers; Surface Properties and the Water Uptake Behavior. Polym. Compos. 2002, 23, 872894,  DOI: 10.1002/pc.10485
    51. 51
      Mohamed, M. H.; Udoetok, I. A.; Wilson, L. D. Animal Biopolymer-Plant Biomass Composites: Synergism and Improved Sorption Efficiency. J. Compos. Sci. 2020, 4, 15,  DOI: 10.3390/jcs4010015
  • Supporting Information

    Supporting Information

    ARTICLE SECTIONS
    Jump To

    The Supporting Information is available free of charge at https://pubs.acs.org/doi/10.1021/acsomega.0c00100.

    • Additional description of XPS results for composition and bond energy for raw and modified FFs (PDF)


    Terms & Conditions

    Most electronic Supporting Information files are available without a subscription to ACS Web Editions. Such files may be downloaded by article for research use (if there is a public use license linked to the relevant article, that license may permit other uses). Permission may be obtained from ACS for other uses through requests via the RightsLink permission system: http://pubs.acs.org/page/copyright/permissions.html.