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High Strength Lightweight Nanocomposite from Domestic

Solid Waste
Masturi1,2), Anggi Puspita Swardhani1), Euis Sustini1), Minsyahril Bukit1), Mora1),
Khairurrijal1), and Mikrajuddin Abdullah1,*)
1

Physics Department of Mathematics and Natural Sciences Faculty


of Institut Teknologi Bandung
Jalan Ganeca 10 Bandung 40132 Indonesia
2
Physics of Mathematics and Natural Sciences Faculty
Universitas Negeri Semarang
*)
E-mail: din@fi.itb.ac.id

Abstract. The issue of waste problems needs innovative efforts to solve. One of them is solid waste utilization as
nanocomposite using polyurethane (PU) polymer as matrix. Beside using solid waste as filler, nanosilica is also added to
improve the material strength of composite-produced. These materials were mixed by simple mixing with variative
compositions, and then hot-pressed at 30 MPa and 100C for 30 minutes. From compressive strength test, it was found
that composite with composition 2:8 of PU and solid waste has optimum compressive strength, i.e. 160 MPa. Into this
optimum composition, nanosilica then is added to improve the compressive strength and found that at composition
1:40:160 of nanosilica, PU and solid waste, the composite has optimum compressive strength 200 MPa, or increases
25% of that without nanosilica. The composite-produced is also lightweight material with the density is 0.69 g/cm3.
Keywords: composite, polyurethane, nanosilica, solid waste, compressive strength.

PACS: 81.05.Qk, 78.67.Sc, 81.40.-z.


composite6 and
composite7.

INTRODUCTION
The rapid growth of solid waste unbalanced
with the decomposition needs more creative and
innovative utilization efforts. One of them is
processing to be composite material competes the
woods. It is very prospective effort and has high
strategic advantages. In one side it becomes solution of
solid waste problem and other side, it can reduce
woods usage so that it can contribute in environment
conservation. Some research related this have been
done, such as leaf-waste composite using epoxy resin
and nanosilica1, agriculture waste composite using
silica2 and paper and leaf waste composite using
polyvinyl acetate resin and nanosilica 3.
One of the polymers often be used as matrix
is polyurethane (PU). It is made by combining polyol
and diisocyanate in certain composition4. PU is
thermoplastic polymer with excellent strength, so that
it has been used as composite matrix, especially to
produce composite with excellent strength, such as in
organoclay
nanocomposite5,
Portland
cement

carbon

fiber-interlayered

fabric

FIGURE 1. Monomer of polyurethane

In otherside, silica has been used as filler or


reinforcement because of its excellent mechanical
strength, such as in composite of leaf waste1,
agriculture waste2, paper and leaf waste3, concrete8,
mortar9 and dental10. In addition, by using nanosilica,
composite strength will increase significantly11. It is
caused by increasing particles surface interaction that
plays an important role in determining its mechanical
properties12.

CP1284, The Third Nanoscience and Nanotechnology Symposium 2010


edited by M. Abdullah and Khairurrijal
2010 American Institute of Physics 978-0-7354-0838-8/10/$30.00

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compressive strength test to obtain a composition of


nanosilica and PU-solid waste mixture produces
material with optimum compressive strength.

EXPERIMENT
Materials

Compressive Strength Measurement


Have been fabricated, the samples then were
characterized by compressive strength test (ASTM
C0109M-02) using Torsee Tokyo Testing Machine
MFG Ltd. in Civil Engineering Laboratory of Institut
Teknologi Bandung. The obtained data in the
measurement are in mass unit. To get the compressive
strength ( ), we use relation 13:

Adhesive polyurethanes (PU), solid waste


(composition: paper 50% dan dry-leaf 50%) and
nanosilica.

Mixing Method
The mixing method in this work is simple
mixing. First, the dried-solid waste was crushed by
blender machine. Otherwise, PU was deliberated, then
dissolved into 8 mL of water and stired spread-evenly
by magnetic stirer for 15 minutes in temperature 50C.
Finally, the crushed-solid waste was mixed into PUwater mixture. In this work, PU mass was varied (1, 2,
3, 4 and 5 grams), while solid waste was kept at 8
grams (Table 1) to obtain a composition in which the
compressive strength is optimum.

F
A

(1)

where F is maximum force loaded until composite is


crushed and A is effective area subjected to the
pressure. With g = 9.8 m/s2 while the samples are in in
cubic form, we can write:

m.g
s2

(2)

where m is measured mass of the force loaded to


sample and s is cubic length of sample.

TABLE 1. Compositions of PU and solid waste

mixtures
Sample
A1
A2
A3
A4
A5

(g)
1
2
3
4
5

PU
(% w/w)
11.1
20.0
27.3
33.3
38.5

RESULT AND DISCUSSION

Solid waste
(g)
(% w/w)
8
88.9
8
80.0
8
72.7
8
67.7
8
61.5

Result of Compressive Strength Test


The result of compressive strength test of the
samples is presented in Table 2.
TABLE 2. The result of compressive strength test
for several compositions of PU and solid waste

Hot Pressing Process


Having been mixed, PU and solid waste were
put into the mould, then hot pressed at pressure 30
MPa and temperature 100C for 30 minutes. Having
been waited for 45 minutes, the sample then was
released from the mould and heated at 80C into oven
for 40 minutes, and so on for other samples. Finally,
the samples were characterized to obtain a compositon
of PU and solid waste in which the compressive
strength is optimum.

Sample

Compressive strength (MPa)

A1
A2
A3
A4
A5

136
160
100
102
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Into the optimum composition of PU and


solid waste, i.e. A2 sample which the compressive
strength is 160 MPa (Table 2), nanosilica then is added
as filler. The compressive strength test result due to
nanosilica addition is presented in Table 3.

Addition of Nanosilica
Into the optimum composition of PU and
solid waste above, then nanosilica was added to
improve the strength of composite-produced. The
method was done by varying nanosilica mass and
keeping constantly PU-solid waste composition. Then
the samples were pressed with same procedure as
before. Finally, they were characterized by

Discussion
Prior to PU presence, solid waste composite
with high porosity is brittle and easy-broken material.

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value otherwise, reduces the compressive strength..


The fraction 20% wt is optimum one of PU, which its
compressive strength is 160 MPa and equivalent with
composition 2:8 of PU and solid waste.
Meanwhile, silica is high strength material16
so that the addition of nanosilica into the optimum
composition of PU and solid waste implifies PU
chains stiffer and improves mechanical strength of
composite-produced. The nanosilica particles,
especially in lower content are dispersed in PU matrix
via its active group, i.e. carbonyl and amine groups as
reported by Lee, et al17. Due to water presence during
mixing process, the hydrogen bridge appears and
implifies hydrogen interaction appearence between
oxygen of nanosilica and carbonyl group of PU
(Figure 3). Hydrogen interaction also appears between
oxygen of nanosilica and amine groups of PU (Figure
3). Eventhough very small, hydrogen interaction has
important role for improving composite mechanical
strength18. Even, with nanosize filler, the dispersion
process of nanosilica is so more effective that the
hydrogen interaction is stronger due to larger
interfacial area resulted. Consequently, the interaction
surface area is increasing14-15. Thus, the mechanical
strength, i.e. the compressive strength improves too12.

The presence of PU as binder is considered as


impregnation process to solid waste pores and the hot
pressing is to quicken it. Thus, the pores become
narrow due to the polymer. The decreasing of porosity
impacts in increasing particles interaction due to
closer the particles distance and as result, it implifies
the composite strength improvement12,14. In addition,
solid waste particles make polymer chains stiffer. Prior
to solid waste presence, PU has high flexibility chains.
Many pores among the chains make them possible to
move freely. The addition of solid waste particles
basically is infiltration process to the PU chains so that
it reduces the chains flexibility. The increase of PU
stiffness impacts in composite strength improvement,
i.e. its compressive strength.
TABLE 3. The result of compressive strength test
for several compositions of nanosilica, PU and solid
waste
Sample
B1
B2
B3
B4
B5

Mass of
nanosilica (g)
0.025
0.050
0.075
0.100
0.125

Compressive
strength (MPa)
191
200
174
174
163

Density
(g/cm3)
0.66
0.69
0.54
0.69
0.77

FIGURE 3. Ilustration of hydrogen interaction


between nanosilica and active groups of polyurethane.
However, the addition of nanosilica content
does not always improve the compressive strength.
When the chains are full-filled by nanosilica called
optimum condition of interaction area, the presence of
nanosilica increases the aggregates and reduces the
interfacial area between nanosilica particles and the
polymer chains17. Thus, it implifies decreasing the
composite strength11,14-15. As presented in Fig. 4,
which the addition of nanosilica content tends to
improve compressive strength of the composite until at
certain fraction, that is 0.00498, the addition of
nanosilica reduces the compressive strength. The
fraction 0.00498 is optimum weight fraction of
nanosilica with the compressive strength is optimum,
i.e. 200 MPa. This fraction is equivalent with
composition 1:40:160 of nanosilica, PU and solid
waste.

FIGURE 2. Compressive strength vs PU content


The addition of PU weight fraction tends to
improve compressive strength of composite-produced
until at certain value called optimum weight fraction of
PU, the PU addition further, otherwise reduces the
compressive strength due to increasing of uninteraction area. In this condition, the latter particles of PU
cannot interact effectively with particles of solid waste
and consequently, the composite strength decreases11,
14-15
. It is consistent with Fig. 2 which the addition of
PU fraction tends to improve composite compressive
strength until at 20%wt. The addition of PU above the

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TABLE 3. Compressive strength of several mate-

rials24
No
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10

Materials
Hard brick
Light brick
Sandstone
Slate
Trap rock
Granite
Limestone
Portland concrete
Common brickwork
Best brickwork

Compressive
strength (MPa)
80
7
60
95
140
130
60
7
7
14

Otherwise, its density is woody, that is


equivalent with such as Jati, Mahoni or Pinus woods
(Table 4).

FIGURE 4. Compressive strength vs fraction mass of


nanosilica with constant PU-solid waste mass.

TABLE 4. Density of several woods25


No
Woods
Density (g/cm3)
1
Apple
0.65 0.85
2
Bamboo
0.3 0.4
3
Beech
0.7 0.9
4
Cherry
0.7 0.9
5
Cotton
0.41
6
Eboni
1.1 1.3
7
Mahoni
0.5 0.85
8
Jati
0.65 0.9
9
Pinus
0.35 0.85

Besides influenced by filler concentration, i.e.


solid waste and nanosilica, furthermore, mechanical
strength of composite is also affected by other parameters11, such as pressure and temperature during
fabrication19, familiarly called as hot pressing, that has
aim for curing process, i.e. solidification process of
polymer matrix to the materials. Pressing at 30 MPa
impacts PU impregnation to solid waste pores distributed more solidly. Consequently, the porosity
becomes smaller, whereas particles interaction
becomes stronger due to closer their distance20.
Macroscopically, it impacts strength improvement. In
addition, heat of 100C for 30 minutes is quickening
the polymer impregnation due to decreasing PU
viscosity21-23. As result, it also impacts to improve the
composite mechanical properties, i.e. its compressive
strength.
In conclusion of this discussion, Table 3
shows that the composites-produced, especially the
one with optimum compressive strength (B2 sample)
are very high strength materials, however, they are
lightweight ones. If compared with several materials,
the composite can be categorized as high strength
material eventhough if compared with some concretes
(Table 3).
It is exciting that the composite is wood-like
lightweight material with concrete-like high strength
so that it would have interesting prospect to compete
woods in the future.

Conclusion
By simple mixing method and hot-pressing
proccess at 30 MPa and 100C, solid waste (paper and
leaf waste) with polyurethane (PU) as the matrix can
be processed as a high strength composite. The
composition 2:8 of PU and solid-waste produces composite with compressive strength 160 MPa. To
improve the compressive strength-produced, nanosilica is added as filler and obtained that composition
1:40:160 of nanosilica, PU and solid waste produces
optimum compressive strength 200 MPa. The nanosilica presence can improve compressive strength of
composite up to 25%. Beside high strength, nanocomposite-produced is very lightweight with the density is
0.69 g/cm3

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT
This work was funded by Dana Bantuan
Tugas Akhir Reseach Grant 2010 from the Province
Government of West Java, Indonesia.

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