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Polymers 2018, 10(1), 47; doi:10.3390/polym10010047

Rheo-Kinetic Study of Sol-Gel Phase Transition of Chitosan Colloidal Systems

Department of Chemical Engineering, Lodz University of Technology, Lodz 90-924, Poland
Department of Environmental Engineering, Lodz University of Technology, Lodz 90-924, Poland
Department of Molecular Engineering, Lodz University of Technology, Lodz 90-924, Poland
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 4 October 2017 / Revised: 30 December 2017 / Accepted: 2 January 2018 / Published: 5 January 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Chitin/Chitosan Characterization and Applications)
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Chitosan colloidal systems, created by dispersing in aqueous solutions of hydrochloric acid, with and without the addition of disodium β-glycerophosphate (β-NaGP), were prepared for the investigation of forming mechanisms of chitosan hydrogels. Three types of chitosan were used in varying molecular weights. The impacts of the charge and shape of the macromolecules on the phase transition process were assessed. The chitosan system without the addition of β-NaGP was characterized by stiff and entangled molecules, in contrast to the chitosan system with the addition of β-NaGP, wherein the molecules adopt a more flexible and disentangled form. Differences in molecules shapes were confirmed using the Zeta potential and thixotropy experiments. The chitosan system without β-NaGP revealed a rapid nature of phase transition—consistent with diffusion-limited aggregation (DLA). The chitosan system with β-NaGP revealed a two-step nature of phase transition, wherein the first step was consistent with reaction-limited aggregation (RLA), while the second step complied with diffusion-limited aggregation (DLA). View Full-Text
Keywords: chitosan; hydrogel; phase transition; gelation mechanism chitosan; hydrogel; phase transition; gelation mechanism

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Owczarz, P.; Ziółkowski, P.; Modrzejewska, Z.; Kuberski, S.; Dziubiński, M. Rheo-Kinetic Study of Sol-Gel Phase Transition of Chitosan Colloidal Systems. Polymers 2018, 10, 47.

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