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Open AccessArticle

Simple One Pot Preparation of Chemical Hydrogels from Cellulose Dissolved in Cold LiOH/Urea

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FSCN, Surface and Colloid Engineering, Mid Sweden University, SE-851 70 Sundsvall, Sweden
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MED—Mediterranean Institute for Agriculture, Environment and Development, Faculty of Sciences and Technology, Campus de Gambelas, Ed. 8, University of Algarve, 8005-139 Faro, Portugal
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Physical Chemistry, University of Lund, SE-221 00 Lund, Sweden
4
Chemistry Department, University of Coimbra, 3004-504 Coimbra, Portugal
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Polymers 2020, 12(2), 373; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym12020373
Received: 12 December 2019 / Revised: 1 February 2020 / Accepted: 3 February 2020 / Published: 7 February 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cellulose and Renewable Materials)
In this work, non-derivatized cellulose pulp was dissolved in a cold alkali solution (LiOH/urea) and chemically cross-linked with methylenebisacrylamide (MBA) to form a robust hydrogel with superior water absorption properties. Different cellulose concentrations (i.e., 2, 3 and 4 wt%) and MBA/glucose molar ratios (i.e., 0.26, 0.53 and 1.05) were tested. The cellulose hydrogel cured at 60 °C for 30 min, with a MBA/glucose molar ratio of 1.05, exhibited the highest water swelling capacity absorbing ca. 220 g H2O/g dry hydrogel. Moreover, the data suggest that the cross-linking occurs via a basic Michael addition mechanism. This innovative procedure based on the direct dissolution of unmodified cellulose in LiOH/urea followed by MBA cross-linking provides a simple and fast approach to prepare chemically cross-linked non-derivatized high-molecular-weight cellulose hydrogels with superior water uptake capacity. View Full-Text
Keywords: LiOH/urea; Michael addition; methylenebisacrylamide; cellulose hydrogel LiOH/urea; Michael addition; methylenebisacrylamide; cellulose hydrogel
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MDPI and ACS Style

Yang, J.; Medronho, B.; Lindman, B.; Norgren, M. Simple One Pot Preparation of Chemical Hydrogels from Cellulose Dissolved in Cold LiOH/Urea. Polymers 2020, 12, 373.

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