Hamzeh, Y., Ashori, A., & Mirzaei, B.

Polymers & the Environment 19 (1): 120–124.

2011

The objective of this work was to determine some physical and mechanical properties of the high density polyethylene (HDPE) composites reinforced with various mixtures of the paper sludge and the wood flour, and to evaluate the coupling agent performance. The waste sludge materials originating from two different sources including paper making waste water treatment sludge (PS) and inkeliminated sludge (IES) were characterized in terms of physico-chemical properties. In the experiment, four levels of paper sludge (20, 30, 40 and 60 wt%), three levels of wood flour (20, 40 and 60 wt%), and two levels of coupling agent (MAPE) content (2 and 3 wt%) were used. The flexural properties of the composites were positively affected by the addition of the sludge. Especially, tensile modulus improved with the increase of paper sludge content. With the addition of MAPE, flexural properties improved considerably compared with control specimens (without any coupling agent). The results showed that the water absorption (WA) and thickness swelling (TS) values of the samples decreased considerably with increasing sludge content in the composite, while they increased with increasing wood flour content. It is to be noted that with incorporation of MAPE in the composite formulation, the compatibility between the wood flour and HDPE was enhanced through esterification, which reduced the WA and TS and improved the mechanical properties. Composites made with IES exhibited superior physico-mechanical properties compared with the PS filled composites. Overall results suggest that the waste paper sludge materials were capable of serving as feasible reinforcing fillers for thermoplasticpolymer composites.