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The Influence of Lignin Diversity on the Structural and Thermal Properties of Polymeric Microspheres Derived from Lignin, Styrene, and/or Divinylbenzene

1
Department of Polymer Chemistry, Faculty of Chemistry, Maria Curie-Sklodowska University, M. Curie-Sklodowska Sq. 3, 20-031 Lublin, Poland
2
Department of Fibre and Polymer Technology, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Teknikringen 56-58, SE-10044 Stockholm, Sweden
3
KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Wallenberg Wood Science Center, Teknikringen 56-58, SE-10044 Stockholm, Sweden
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Materials 2019, 12(18), 2847; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma12182847
Received: 19 July 2019 / Revised: 27 August 2019 / Accepted: 2 September 2019 / Published: 4 September 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environmentally Friendly Polymeric Blends from Renewable Sources)
This work investigates the impact of lignin origin and structural characteristics, such as molecular weight and functionality, on the properties of corresponding porous biopolymeric microspheres obtained through suspension-emulsion polymerization of lignin with styrene (St) and/or divinylbenzene (DVB). Two types of kraft lignin, which are softwood (Picea abies L.) and hardwood (Eucalyptus grandis), fractionated by common industrial solvents, and related methacrylates, were used in the synthesis. The presence of the appropriate functional groups in the lignins and in the corresponding microspheres were investigated by attenuated total reflectance Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (ATR/FT-IR), while the thermal properties were studied by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC). The texture of the microspheres was characterized using low-temperature nitrogen adsorption. The swelling studies were performed in typical organic solvents and distilled water. The shapes of the microspheres were confirmed with an optical microscope. The introduction of lignin into a St and/or DVB polymeric system made it possible to obtain highly porous functionalized microspheres that increase their sorption potential. Lignin methacrylates created a polymer network with St and DVB, whereas the unmodified lignin acted mainly as an eco-friendly filler in the pores of St-DVB or DVB microspheres. The incorporation of biopolymer into the microspheres could be a promising alternative to a modification of synthetic materials and a better utilization of lignin. View Full-Text
Keywords: lignin; microspheres; composites; polymeric material; fractionation; porosity lignin; microspheres; composites; polymeric material; fractionation; porosity
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Goliszek, M.; Podkościelna, B.; Sevastyanova, O.; Gawdzik, B.; Chabros, A. The Influence of Lignin Diversity on the Structural and Thermal Properties of Polymeric Microspheres Derived from Lignin, Styrene, and/or Divinylbenzene. Materials 2019, 12, 2847.

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