Friday 02 Mar 2012Colloquium: Nanocellulose: Properties and Applications

Prof. Stephen Eichhorn - University of Exeter

Newman F 12:00-13:00

Natural cellulose fibres from plants come in a variety of forms, shapes and sizes (e.g. cotton, flax, hemp). Their main dimensions of length and width tend to be on the micron scale. They do however have hierarchical structures that can be broken down, either chemically or mechanically, to produce so-called "nanocellulose" fibres. Other forms of cellulose fibres are produced by sea animals (tunicates) and bacteria have nanoscale width dimensions (<100 nm). All of these nanocellulose fibre types will be reviewed. The self-ordering and orientation of rod-like nanocellulose, interfaces with resin materials and the relationship between the effectiveness of these interfaces and the statistical geometry of stochastic fibrous network structures will be discussed. Applications of nanofibres from cellulosic materials as composite reinforcements and tissue engineering substrates will also be presented.

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