Presenter Information

Paige Canale

Faculty Sponsor

Mustafa Yatin

Status

Undergraduate

Publication Date

5-1-2021

Department

Chemistry and Physics

Description

The Earth is choking from the pollution of man made plastic and the environment is in desperate need of a solution that will aid in the fight against climate change. The emerging research and production of biodegradable polymers offers hope of an environmentally safe alternative that will be able to be used in place of standard plastic. This study aims to strategize a substitute for the linear low-density polyethylene (LLDPE) trash bag using polycaprolactone (PCL), a biodegradable polyester. Specifically, it investigates PCL’s manufacturing capabilities and molecular effectiveness as a LLDPE replacement. There is a probable need for a modification of PCL in order for it to be a feasible LLDPE replacement and multiple solutions including polymerization synthesis to add branching and polyester blends are reviewed. To explore PCL as a LLDPE substitute, this research study details the molecular properties and material characteristics of both materials, as well as trash bag manufacturing methods to determine the ability for PCL to be a LLDPE replacement. These investigations will bring into question PCL’s capability to be used as a trash bag and feasible modifications of PCL will be theorized to mimic the molecular properties that make LLDPE. The theory of this eco-friendly alternative presents possible and adequate results as a LLDPE substitute.

Presentation Type

Poster

COinS
 

Polycaprolactone and Its Use as a Biodegradable Trash Bag

The Earth is choking from the pollution of man made plastic and the environment is in desperate need of a solution that will aid in the fight against climate change. The emerging research and production of biodegradable polymers offers hope of an environmentally safe alternative that will be able to be used in place of standard plastic. This study aims to strategize a substitute for the linear low-density polyethylene (LLDPE) trash bag using polycaprolactone (PCL), a biodegradable polyester. Specifically, it investigates PCL’s manufacturing capabilities and molecular effectiveness as a LLDPE replacement. There is a probable need for a modification of PCL in order for it to be a feasible LLDPE replacement and multiple solutions including polymerization synthesis to add branching and polyester blends are reviewed. To explore PCL as a LLDPE substitute, this research study details the molecular properties and material characteristics of both materials, as well as trash bag manufacturing methods to determine the ability for PCL to be a LLDPE replacement. These investigations will bring into question PCL’s capability to be used as a trash bag and feasible modifications of PCL will be theorized to mimic the molecular properties that make LLDPE. The theory of this eco-friendly alternative presents possible and adequate results as a LLDPE substitute.