Biodegradation of oxo-biodegradable polyethylene

Reddy, M, Deighton, M, Gupta, R, Bhattacharya, S and Parthasarathy, R 2009, 'Biodegradation of oxo-biodegradable polyethylene', Journal of Applied Polymer Science, vol. 111, no. 3, pp. 1426-1432.

Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Journal Articles

Title Biodegradation of oxo-biodegradable polyethylene
Author(s) Reddy, M
Deighton, M
Gupta, R
Bhattacharya, S
Parthasarathy, R
Year 2009
Journal name Journal of Applied Polymer Science
Volume number 111
Issue number 3
Start page 1426
End page 1432
Total pages 7
Publisher John Wiley and Sons Inc
Abstract Biodegradation of polyethylene and oxobiodegradable polyethylene films was studied in this work. Abiotic oxidation, which is the first stage of oxobiodegradation, was carried out for a period corresponding to 4 years of thermo-oxidation at composting temperatures. The oxidation was followed by biodegradation, which was achieved by inoculating the microorganism Pseudomonas aeruginosa on polyethylene film in mineral medium and monitoring its degradation. The changes in the molecular weight of polyethylene and the concentration of oxidation products were monitored by size exclusion chromatography and Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy, respectively. It has been found that the initial abiotic oxidation helps to reduce the molecular weight of oxo-biodegradable polyethylene and form easily biodegradable product fractions. In the microbial degradation stage, P. aeruginosa is found to form biofilm on polymer film indicating its growth. Molecular weight distribution data for biodegraded oxo-biodegradable polyethylene have shown that P. aeruginosa is able to utilize the low-molecular weight fractions produced during oxidation. However, it is not able to perturb the whole of the polymer volume as indicated by the narrowing of the polymer molecular weight distribution curve toward higher molecular fractions. The decrease in the carbonyl index, which indicates the concentration of carbonyl compounds, with time also indicates the progress of biodegradation.
Subject Chemical Engineering not elsewhere classified
Infectious Agents
Keyword(s) polyethylene
pseudomonas aeruginosa
abiotic oxidation
DOI - identifier 10.1002/app.29073
Copyright notice © 2008 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
ISSN 0021-8995
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