Fracture behavior of highly toughened poly(lactic acid)/ethylene-co-vinyl acetate blends

Q. Zeng, Y. Feng, R. Wang, P. Ma (Corresponding author)

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    2 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Poly(lactic acid) (PLA) is brittle which restricts the range of its applications. The toughness of PLA was effectively improved in this work by incorporation of rubber grade ethylene-co-vinyl acetate (EVM). For example, the elongation at break of PLA increased by about 50 times after the addition of the EVM (10-30 wt%), although the EVM was not miscible with the PLA matrix. Furthermore, the notched impact toughness of PLA/EVM blend (70/30 wt/wt) reached to 85 kJ/m2 even at a temperature as low as -10°C. The critical temperatures of brittle-to-ductile transition (BDT) for PLA/EVM blends are observed at -20~0°C depending on the composition, while no BTD transition appeared for neat PLA. The impact fracture surface morphology of PLA and PLA/EVM blends observed by SEM indicates that the toughening modification was achieved through obvious matrix yielding. Moreover, the toughening behavior of the PLA/EVM blends was also interpreted quantitatively by using a single-edge notched three-point bending model (SEN3PB). The SEN3PB experiments reveal that the fracture energy was consumed in an outer plastic zone away from the fracture surface rather than in the inner fracture process zone, which accounts for the high toughness of the PLA/EVM blends.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)153-162
    Number of pages10
    Journale-Polymers
    Volume18
    Issue number2
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 23 Feb 2018

    Keywords

    • fracture behavior
    • mechanism
    • poly(lactic acid)
    • SEN3PB model
    • toughness

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