Acceleration of Biodegradation Using Polymer Blends and Composites

Zhong H.W. Easton, Mike A.J. Essink, Laura Rodriguez Comas, Frederik R. Wurm*, Hubert Gojzewski*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleAcademicpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
19 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Biobased and biodegradable polymers are used in bioplastics as blends or composites of various materials to tune their physical properties but also influence their stability with respect to biodegradation. Biodegradable polymers are often not as biodegradable as they are claimed to be, especially due to different degradation conditions in soil, water, compost, or in vivo. Mixing such polymers with faster degrading polymers (blends) or fillers (composites) is a powerful strategy to adjust degradation rates. This review selects representative examples of bioplastic blends and composites in applications, such as tissue engineering, agriculture, or packaging, with a focus on controlling/accelerating the biodegradation rates. It also focuses on strategies such as hydrolysis enhancement, attraction of microbes for microbial degradation, pore forming fillers, or increase of phase separation in polymer mixtures. A basis for the prevention of microplastic formation or unwanted side effects with too slow degradation rates of biodegradable polymers is set.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2200421
JournalMacromolecular chemistry and physics
Volume224
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2023

Keywords

  • biodegradation
  • bioplastics
  • composites
  • hydrolysis
  • polymer blends
  • UT-Hybrid-D

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