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Fabrication of highly water-repelling paper by surface coating with stearic acid modified calcium carbonate particles and reactive biopolymers

Zhiwei Wang, Min Yi, Zheyun Zhang, Cancan Zhu, Qimin Feng, Peng Lu, Shuangfei Wang


Cellulose paper is the most attractive green packaging material due to its recyclability, renewability, sustainability and biodegradability. In some applications, paper with a high level of water resistance is desirable to meet specific requirements in modern packaging fields. This research aimed to develop a water-repelling paper with cost-effective and nontoxic materials. Commercial precipitated calcium carbonate (PCC) particles were modified by stearic acid (SA) and incorporated with soybean oil-based binder as a water repelling coating agent. The water-repelling efficiency of the coated paper was highly dependent on the ratio of SA / PCC as well as the binder content in the coating formula. PCC particles modified with 12wt% SA were efficient in increasing the water contact angle (WCA) of the coated paper to 146° at a coating weight of 5 g/m2.  The binder for the coating was synthesized with acrylated epoxidized soybean oil (AESO) through Michael addition reaction. The triglyceride structure in the polymer chain imparted good bio-degradability to the binder polymer. It was found that surface modification of PCC with stearic acid played an important role in improving the WCA of paper.  A super hydrophobic paper with a WCA of 162° was fabricated with a coating formula of 60% SA-modified PCC and 40 wt% AESO-binder.

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