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Structural characterization and properties of polyols plasticized chitosan films

Ma, Xianguang, Qiao, Congde, Wang, Xujie, Yao, Jinshui, Xu, Jing
International journal of biological macromolecules 2019 v.135 pp. 240-245
Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction, chitosan, crystal structure, crystallization, differential scanning calorimetry, electrostatic interactions, films (materials), food industry, glass transition temperature, glycerol, hydrogen bonding, maltitol, melting point, microstructure, plasticizers, polymers, tensile strength, thermal properties, thermogravimetry, water content, xylitol
In this study, the influence of different polyols such as glycerol, xylitol and maltitol on the crystalline structure and thermal properties of chitosan films were investigated by X-ray diffraction (XRD), Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), and thermogravimetric analysis (TGA). The concentration of polyol was fixed at 20 wt%. FTIR result showed that the addition of polyols weakened the hydrogen bonding between chitosan molecules, whereas the electrostatic interactions remained nearly unchanged. Structural analysis revealed that the plasticizer which promoted the crystallization of chitosan was moisture rather than polyol contained in the polymer films. DSC result indicated that glycerol plasticized film had a lower glass transition temperature (Tg) and lower melting temperature (Tm). The low thermal transition temperatures suggested that the moisture content is higher in glycerol plasticized film, which was evidenced by TGA result. In addition, the polyols incorporation resulted in a decrease of the tensile strength of chitosan films, while their ductility was improved. These observations indicate that the addition of polyols as plasticizers could regulate the microstructure as well as the properties of chitosan films, which is essential for their usage in food industry.