We are glad to announce the publication of our work “Novel In-Situ Precipitation Process to Engineer Low Permeability Porous Composite” in Scientific Reports.
The article presents a novel and simple diffusion induced in-situ precipitation method to selectively precipitate CaCO3 particles within the porous structure of cellulose nanofiber film. This process relies on capillary flow in wettable porous composites to absorb and store liquid. A porous composite first absorbs a salt solution, after which the composite is dipped in a second salt solution. Salts are selected to reach and form an insoluble precipitate. As big pores absorb more liquid than small pores, the precipitated particles are formed specifically for each pore. In this article precipitation of 1wt% of CaCO3 nanoparticles in the cellulose nanofiber film reduced the pore volume by 50%, without changing the density. This reduced the water vapour and oxygen transmission rates by one order of magnitude to 4.7 g/m².day and 2.7 cc/m².day. The barrier properties of in-situ precipitated composites showed superior performance compared to previously reported cellulose nanofiber films in literature. The concept opens opportunities for producing low cost packaging materials and separation membranes where renewability, recyclability and biodegradability are important.
Authors: Swambabu Varanasi, Uthpala Garusinghe, George P Simon, Gil Garnier and Warren Batchelor
This paper can be downloaded from the following link: