Special Issue "Performance Research of Polyurethane Foams and Composites"

A special issue of Materials (ISSN 1996-1944). This special issue belongs to the section "Porous Materials".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 January 2021.

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Saulius Vaitkus
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Vilnius Gediminas Technical University, Vilnius, Lithuania
Interests: porous materials; polymer materials; thermal insulation; sustainability; circular economy

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Polyurethanes are among the most used polymers due to their advantageous mechanical and thermal insulating performance. Currently, there is a great demand to substitute traditional raw material in the synthesis of polyurethane foams applied in the building sector because sustainable development and the circular economy have gained a great amount of attention internationally and nationally in developed and developing countries. To uphold the Earth’s productivity, reduce our carbon footprint, and obtain the maximum economic gain, sustainable development together with the circular economy promote improved methods which guide the reuse, recycling, substitution of natural resources, and development of engineering processes that could minimize the energy consumption, resources used, and waste generation. Thus, there is an urgent need to study performance characteristics of such polyurethane foams and their composites in order to assess the suitability of such materials to be used for thermal insulation, sound absorbing or even structural purposes.

The present Special Issue on “Performance Research of Polyurethane Foams and Composites” welcomes contributions in the form of full articles or review articles in topics related to the synthesis, characterization, modification, and processing of polyurethane foams and composites for use in various applications, including but not limited to building, automative, bedding, and footwear insdustries. This Special Issue represents a good opportunity for chemists, biochemists, technologists, and engineers to present their research that aims to produce and characterize polyurethane foams and composites which meet the stringening requirements for sustainability and a circular economy.

Dr. Saulius Vaitkus
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Materials is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • polyurethane foam
  • polyurethane composite
  • filled polyurethanes
  • performance
  • sustainability
  • circular economy
  • modified polyurethane
  • carbon footprint

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
Closed Cell Rigid Polyurethane Foams Based on Low Functionality Polyols: Research of Dimensional Stability and Standardised Performance Properties
Materials 2020, 13(6), 1438; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13061438 - 21 Mar 2020
Abstract
Currently, polyurethane foam producers come across the several problems when petroleum-based polyols are replaced with low functionality biomass, or waste-based, polyols. In addition, the dilemma is intensified with regulations that require full or partial replacement of blowing agents that can cause high ozone [...] Read more.
Currently, polyurethane foam producers come across the several problems when petroleum-based polyols are replaced with low functionality biomass, or waste-based, polyols. In addition, the dilemma is intensified with regulations that require full or partial replacement of blowing agents that can cause high ozone depletion with alternatives like water, which causes the formation of CO2. Therefore, these gases diffuse out of the foam so quickly that the polymeric cell walls cannot withstand the pressure, consequently causing huge dimensional changes at ambient temperature and humidity. Even though the theoretical stoichiometric balance is correct, the reality shows that it is not enough. Therefore, polyethylene terephthalate waste-based polyol was chosen as a low functionality polyol which was modified with high functionality sucrose-based polyol in order to obtain dimensionally stable polyurethane foams in the density range of 30–40 kg/m3. These more stable foams are characterized by linear changes no higher than 0.5%, short-term water absorption by partial immersion no higher than 0.35 kg/m2, and water vapor resistance factors up to 50. In order to obtain thermally efficient polyurethane foams, conventional blowing agents and water systems were implemented, thus, assuring thermal conductivity values in the range of 0.0198–0.0204 W/(m·K) and obtaining products which conform to all the requirements for performance of sprayed and factory-made polyurethane foam standards EN 14315-1 and EN 13165. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Performance Research of Polyurethane Foams and Composites)
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Open AccessArticle
Bio-Based Polyurethane Composite Foams with Improved Mechanical, Thermal, and Antibacterial Properties
Materials 2020, 13(5), 1108; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13051108 - 02 Mar 2020
Abstract
Among different organic fillers, the chemical composition of Syzygium aromaticum, commonly known as cloves, has great potential as a sustainable reinforcement for polymeric materials. In the study, grounded cloves were used as cellulosic filler for a novel polyurethane (PU) composite foams. Soybean [...] Read more.
Among different organic fillers, the chemical composition of Syzygium aromaticum, commonly known as cloves, has great potential as a sustainable reinforcement for polymeric materials. In the study, grounded cloves were used as cellulosic filler for a novel polyurethane (PU) composite foams. Soybean oil-based PU composite foams were successfully reinforced with different concentrations (1, 2, and 5 wt%) of clove filler. PU foams were examined by rheological behavior, processing parameters, cellular structure (scanning electron microscopy analysis), mechanical properties (compression test, impact test, three-point bending test), thermal properties (thermogravimetric analysis), viscoelastic behavior (dynamic mechanical analysis) as well as selected application properties (apparent density, dimensional stability, surface hydrophobicity, water absorption, color characteristic). In order to undertake the disc diffusion method, all PU composites were tested against selected bacteria (Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus). Based on the results, it can be concluded that the addition of 1 and 2 wt% of clove filler leads to PU composite foams with improved compression strength (improvement by ≈18% for sample PU-1), greater flexural strength (increase of ≈11%), and improved impact strength (increase of ≈8%). Moreover, it has been proved that clove filler may be used as a natural anti-aging compound for polymeric materials. Based on the antibacterial results, it has been shown that the addition of clove filler significantly improved the antibacterial properties of PU foams and is suitable for the manufacturing of antimicrobial PU composite foams. Due to these positive and beneficial effects, it can be stated that the use of cloves as a natural filler in PU composite foams can promote a new application path in converting agricultural waste into useful resources for creating a new class of green materials. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Performance Research of Polyurethane Foams and Composites)
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