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New Biodegradable Polymer

  • 06 Oct 2021
  • 2 min read

Why in News

Recently, scientists have developed a New biodegradable polymer, using Guar Gum, and Chitosan, which has high potential for packaging material.

Key Points:

  • About:
    • It is a guar gum-chitosan composite film which is a cross-linked polysaccharide developed with the help of solution casting method (a simple technique to make polymer films). It overcomes the challenges of polysaccharides.
      • Polysaccharides is one of the biopolymers with high potential for use in synthesis of packaging material.
      • However, due to some drawbacks of polysaccharides, such as low mechanical properties, high water-solubility, and low barrier properties, they are not preferred.
      • Guar Gum, and Chitosan are polysaccharides extracted from guar beans and shells of crab and shrimps.
  • Properties of the Film:
    • High water stability, high mechanical strength as well as excellent resistance towards harsh environmental conditions.
      • The fabricated cross-linked film is not easily soluble in water. As per scientists, it did not dissolve even after 240 hours.
    • It is highly water repellent or hydrophobic because of its high contact angle of 92.8º.
    • Water vapor permeability is low as compared to the film made only from chitosan.
      • Vapour permeability is a material's ability to allow a vapour (such as water vapour or, indeed any gas) to pass through it.
  • Significance:
    • It is likely to help effectively deal with the menace of piling non-biodegradable packaging materials, including water and soda bottles.
      • Normally, Polymers have a wide variety of industrial and commercial uses but it is not biodegradable and hence poses a major challenge to the environment and earth’s ecosystem.

Source: PIB

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