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ZnO-Cellulose Hybrid Material for a Green Nanocomposite

J. Kim, A. John, H.-U. Ko, S.-D. Jang
Inha University, KR

Keywords: Zinc oxide, cellulose, hybrid composite, green composite


Cellulose is the most abundant and widespread biopolymer. Owing to its abundance, biodegradability and specific properties cellulose is a very important renewable resource for the development of environmentally friendly, biocompatible and functional materials. Zinc oxide (ZnO) is a wide band gap semiconductor having a high electron-hole binding energy and important applications in electronics, optics, optoelectronics, lasers, and light-emitting diodes. The piezoelectric and pyroelectric properties of ZnO make it a great candidate for sensors, transducers, energy generators, and photocatalysts for hydrogen production. Cellulose films coated with ZnO nanoparticles constitute an important material for practical applications ranging from the film and paint industry to the technologically appealing area of optoelectronic paper. This paper explains how to produce ZnO-cellulose hybrid material that can be a green nanocomposite. ZnO nanoparticles are immobilized on the surface of the regenerated cellulose film by wet chemical method in which controlled hydrolysis of Zn(II)-amine complex leads to the formation of ZnO nanoparticles. ZnO nanoparticles immobilized on biopolymers like cellulose have potential technological application and the reported method is very simple and immobilization is achieved without the aid of binder or dendron side groups. Hydroxyl groups and hydrophilic pores within the cellulose film facilitate the nucleation and crystal growth. Moreover, the porous structures within the cellulose film can also prevent the agglomeration and growth of nanoparticles. ZnO-cellulose material is characterized by spectral, thermal and optical methods. SEM and AFM analysis confirm the formation of ZnO nanoparticles on the surface of the regenerated cellulose film and XRD pattern shows the ZnO has the wurtzite structure. The obtained ZnO-cellulose material shows high piezoelectricity, which is very promising for sensor and actuator applications.
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