1. Degradation of paper products due to volatile organic compounds.
Alam, Izhar and Sharma, Chhaya
PAPER products, HEMICELLULOSE, BIOPOLYMERS, ACETIC acid, VOLATILE organic compounds, WHEAT straw, CARBONYL group
Paper and packaging materials a lignocellulose-based natural biodegradable polymer that spontaneously releases acetic acid, aldehydes, alcohol, and ester-based volatile organic compounds (VOCs) upon ageing and these VOCs start degrading the paper products and decline their mechanical strength properties. The reactivity of the paper of unbleached wheat straw pulp towards acetic acid and hexanal, which has been proven to have more degrading effects on paper than other VOCs, was considered in this work. The papers were exposed to these volatile compounds for 90 days in an air-tight vessel under ambient environmental conditions. The results showed that hexanal was more destructive than acetic acid with regards to cellulose degradation and depletion in the mechanical strength properties. The paper properties like, tensile, tear and burst index, viscosity, pH and carbonyl group content was measured. The growth of the carbonyl group, evidence of the ageing effects in the paper, detected more in the paper exposed to acetic acid. However, the strength of paper properties declined more with hexanal. FE-SEM analysis of the sample showed the development of pores and damage of cellulose fibre upon ageing. Similarly, the damaging effects of VOCs on cellulose, hemicelluloses and lignin were confirmed by significantly reduced peak detection through FT-IR \analysis. The high crystallinity index of the paper products due to exposure to VOCs was detected by XRD analysis, which confirmed the degradation of the low molecular weight cellulose molecule. Thus, the results are strongly recommended that VOCs that generates due to natural or artificial ageing could be the leading cause of paper degradation. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
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