Experimental investigation of chitosan film reinforced by chitin fibers and chitin whiskers extracted from shrimp shell waste

Elhussieny A.
Faisal M.
D'Angelo G.
Everitt N.M.
Fahim I.S.

An investigation has been made to predict the effects of fore body and after body chitin and chitosan are natural polymers that have many advantages, such as biocompatibility, biodegradability, healing acceleration, non-toxicity, and anti-infection properties. However, the use of pure chitosan films in many applications is limited due to their poor tensile strength and elasticity. Nevertheless, creating biocompatible and biodegradable high-strength composites is of interest to researchers. In this study, chitosan films were reinforced by the addition of chitin fibres and chitin whiskers with 25 wt.% and 35 wt.% concentration. Chitosan films were prepared by solution casting. The physical, mechanical, chemical, and thermal properties of the synthesized composite films were investigated. Experimental results showed that 25 wt.% chitin whiskers enhanced the yield strength, fracture strength, and Young`s modulus of the composites relative to pure chitosan. The thermal degradation temperature of chitosan was improved by adding chitin fibres and chitin whiskers to chitosan composites, which indicated that the composite thin films could be used in thermal applications. Thus, chitin fibre and chitin whisker chitosan composites are promising materials to replace synthetic plastic polymers. © 2020 Taylor's University. All rights reserved.