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Open AccessArticle

Extraction of Cellulose Nano-Whiskers Using Ionic Liquid-Assisted Ultra-Sonication: Optimization and Mathematical Modelling Using Box–Behnken Design

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Nanotechnology and Catalysis Research Center (NANOCAT), University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 50603, Malaysia
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Department of Chemical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering and the Built environment, Segi University, Kuala Lumpour 50100, Malaysia
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Malaysian Agricultural Research and Development Institute (MARDI), Serdang 43400, Selangor, Malaysia
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Islamic Business School, Universiti Utara Malaysia, 06010, UUM, Sinto, Kedah 060010, Malaysia
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Halal Products Research Institute, Universiti Putra Malaysia, UPM, Serdang, Selangor 43400, Malaysia
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Global Centre for Environmental Remediation (GCER), University of Newcastle, Callaghan, NSW 2308, Australia
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Department of Mechanical Engineering, College of Engineering, King Khalid University, PO Box 394, Abha 61421, Saudi Arabia
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Osun State Polytechnic, Iree PMB 301, Nigeria
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Symmetry 2019, 11(9), 1148; https://doi.org/10.3390/sym11091148
Received: 30 July 2019 / Revised: 29 August 2019 / Accepted: 3 September 2019 / Published: 10 September 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanocatalysis and Symmetry in Chemistry)
This study focuses on the extraction of cellulose nano-whiskers (CNWs) from the leaves of Adansonia kilima (AK), usually known as African baobab, using a combination of a microwave-assisted alkali (KOH) pre-treatment with subsequent bleaching process prior to ultra-sonication. Ultra-sonication was carried out using the ionic liquid (IL) 1-butyl-3-methylimidazolium hydrogen sulfate (Bmim-HSO4). Process parameters for ultra-sonication were optimized using a two-level factorial Box–Behnken design (BBD). Process variables such as ultra-sonication power (x1), hydrolysing time (x2) and temperature (x3) were varied. Responses selected were percentage crystallinity index, CrI% (y1) and yield% (y1) for the finally procured CNWs sample. Regression analysis was carried out to develop quadratic model to analyze the effect of process variables on IL-assisted ultra-sonication process. Analysis of variance (ANOVA) showed that ultra-sonication power was the most influential aspect for hydrolyzing the amorphous segments of crude cellulose extracted from baobab leaves. A relative study of the physio-chemical properties of the starting lignocellulosic substrate (AK), KOH pre-treated, bleached and IL-assisted ultra-sonicated CNWs was conducted. The synthesized samples were characterized using Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, Scanning electron microscopy, atomic force microscopy, high resolution transmission electron microscopy, X-ray diffraction and thermo-gravimetric and zeta potential analysis. Under optimum condition, the extracted CNWs showed an average width of 15–20 nm; with high crystallinity index of 86.46%. This research provides an insight about the delignification of Adansonia kilima (AK) leaves and its effective conversion to CNWs having high crystallinity. View Full-Text
Keywords: ionic liquid (IL); crystallinity index; CrI%; cellulose nano-whiskers (CNWs); analysis of variance (ANOVA); Box–Behnken design (BBD) ionic liquid (IL); crystallinity index; CrI%; cellulose nano-whiskers (CNWs); analysis of variance (ANOVA); Box–Behnken design (BBD)
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Chowdhury, Z.Z.; Chandran, R.R.R.; Jahan, A.; Khalid, K.; Rahman, M.M.; Al-Amin, M.; Akbarzadeh, O.; Badruddin, I.A.; Khan, T.M.Y.; Kamangar, S.; Hamizi, N.A.B.; Wahab, Y.A.; Johan, R.B.; Adebisi, G.A. Extraction of Cellulose Nano-Whiskers Using Ionic Liquid-Assisted Ultra-Sonication: Optimization and Mathematical Modelling Using Box–Behnken Design. Symmetry 2019, 11, 1148.

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