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On the structure and oxygen transmission rate of biodegradable cellulose nanobarriers

Gary Chinga-Carrasco* and Kristin Syverud

Author Affiliations

Paper and Fibre Research Institute (PFI), Høgskoleringen 6b, Trondheim, 7491, Norway

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Nanoscale Research Letters 2012, 7:192  doi:10.1186/1556-276X-7-192

Published: 19 March 2012


Cellulose nanofibrils have been proposed for novel barrier concepts, based on their capability to form smooth, strong and transparent films, with high oxygen barrier properties. A series of cellulose-based films were manufactured and tested with respect to their oxygen transmission rate (OTR) capabilities. The obtained OTR levels were considerably better than the levels recommended for packaging applications. Part of the nanofibrillated material applied in this study was produced with 2,2,6,6-tetramethylpiperidinyl-1-oxyl (TEMPO) mediated oxidation as pretreatment. Films made of TEMPO-pretreated samples yielded lower OTR values. The minimum obtained OTR value was 3.0 mL m-2 day-1 atm-1 with a corresponding oxygen permeability of 0.04 mL mm m-2 day-1 atm-1, tested at 50% relative humidity. The good barrier properties are due to the compact and dense structure of the films, as revealed by field-emission scanning electron microscopy. A relationship between OTR and the structure of the corresponding nanofibril-based films was confirmed.

Nanoparticles; Polymers; Porous materials; Cellulose; Films