A Study of Cellulose Based Biodegradable Foams and Sponges
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Environmental concerns have brought about a push to replace non-biodegradable products that are made from non-renewable resources. Investigations regarding use of wood fibers and other biomass as a raw material for biodegradable foams and sponges are an example of such a replacement. Foams made at least partially of biomass can be created using cellulose from wood fibers once the cellulose is converted into a fluid form. Polyurethane foams can be made from polyols containing as much as 50% biomass by combined dissolution of wood and starch. Sponges can be made completely from cellulose regenerated from a viscose rayon solution, and the effect of using wood fibers as reinforcement material within the cellulose matrix of such sponges was studied. The effect of fiber content and fiber length on absorbance, swelling, density, air to cellulose ratios, bound water, and tensile was determined.