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Issue 02/2018

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From Science and

From Science and Research Keep bugs away with bioplastics Biobased plastics with natural insecticide functionality Currently, there is increasing anecdotal evidence that climate change is promoting the spread of insectdriven pathogens that cause major health issues, e.g., the recent outbreaks of the Zika as well malaria and dengue fever. The combat against these insects has highlighted the need for sustainable protective garments and it has motivated the Center for Bioplastics and Biocomposites (CB 2 ) team (Ames, Iowa, USA) to develop materials that are biobased and have the intrinsic function of natural insect repellency. Biobased polylactic acid (PLA) fibers PLA is a biobased plastic that can be used to produce fabrics for protective garments. It has relatively good mechanical properties, and can be used to produce fibers by extrusion. However, there was no reliable data on whether synthetic or natural insecticides can be compounded with PLA. NatureWorks’ PLA 6100D grade and selected insecticides were compounded and melt-spun into fibers. To confirm the thermal stability of natural and synthetic insecticides, thermal gravimetric analysis (TGA) was conducted. The thermal degradation temperatures were used as the reference of compounding the insecticides with PLA. It was found that pyrethrum as well as DEET can be processed with PLA without undergoing thermal degradation. Plant based, ecofriendly insecticides The beneficial effects of natural insecticides, such as aromatic/essential oils, have been reported as far back as antiquity, before the extensive use and production of current synthetic insecticides. Compared to synthetic based repellents, natural insecticides/repellents are a more sustainable choice, as they are less persistent in the environment and biodegradable. Use of DEET (N,N-diethylmeta-toluamide) is wide-spread because it is an effective insect repellent and labeled safe, although it may act as an irritant or even cause severe epidermal reactions [1, 2]. DEET is an effective solvent and may dissolve some eye glass lenses, watch crystals, plastics, or other synthetic fabrics [3]. On the other hand, pyrethrum extract (derived from chrysanthemum plants) is not only a natural compound, but it also breaks down rapidly when in contact with light and does not accumulate or persist in the environment. Does DEET depolymerize polyesters? There have been anecdotal reports that DEET can either act as a solvent or even depolymerize polyesters [4]. Gel Permeation Chromatography (GPC) analysis was conducted to characterize the molecular weight distribution of PLA extruded with DEET. Table 1 demonstrates that DEET promotes depolymerization, which is consistent with the observation of loss of tenacity (strength). Contact Irritancy Assay (CIA) A slightly modified contact irritancy assay protocol was used to assess the repellent efficacy of the various DEETtreated, pyrethrum-treated, and control/untreated fabrics. All PLA fabrics were individually draped around the interior of the exposure chamber (Figure 1). This facilitated the evaluation of the irritancy of the treated fabric toward adult Aedes aegypti mosquitoes. For fabrics that cause a high level of contact irritancy, more mosquitoes migrate into the untreated, clear, counting chamber. Figure 1. Contact irritancy chamber as described by Grieco et al [5]. This device is separated into an exposure chamber and a viewing chamber. 1: outer metal housing for the exposure chamber, 2: clear viewing chamber, 3: outer viewing window, 4: butterfly valve, 5: interior of exposure chamber (where treated fabric is draped), 6: interior metal housing for the exposure chamber. Figure 2. Samples of PLA/pyrethrum woven fabrics 30 bioplastics MAGAZINE [02/18] Vol. 13 SPM-FLP-639 Flex Foam Ad_145x165mm.indd 1 03/2017 JUNE/JULY Molded flexible foam with Honeywell Solstice® Liquid Blowing Agent cuts weight up to 20% in seats, carpet underlayment, other acoustic parts, integral skin and more — all without sacrificing comfort, durability and acoustics. You’ll have the flexibility to meet desired designs while trimming weight to more easily meet MPG and environmental goals. Plus, it’s nonflammable and U.S. EPA SNAP-listed. Learn more at or 1-800-631-8138. © 2017 Honeywell International Inc. All rights reserved. 5/8/17 10:41 AM Mehr Tempo bei der Pultrusion: Die neuen iPul-Anlagen von KraussMaffei bieten Ihnen mehr Produktivität und Wirtschaftlichkeit bei der Herstellung gerader und gekrümmter Profile. Erfahren Sie mehr unter: Engineering Passion 03/2017 Juli Composites Europe, Halle 4, Stand D21 Leichtbau/Composites Automo mobil Inter terieur Obe rfläch en Iso lat ion/We iße Ware Son derlös lösung gen Josef Renkl, Ihr rKrau raussM sMaff ei Expert rte für Pul tru sion KM_Anz_Leadership_Pultrusion_DE+m_145x164+3.indd 1 26.06.17 15:28 From Science and Research 27 TH –28 TH SEPT. SmartTraining SmartTrace SmartFace SmartRemain Find more information about our Industry 4.0 products online: Beware of imitations. Volume 8, May 2017 By: Cindu Annandarajah, David Grewell, Chunhui Xiang, Edmund J. Norris, Ryan Funk, Joel R. Coats, Danny Mishek and Benjamin Maloy Iowa State University and CB 2 Ames, Iowa, USA S19203 Table 1: GPC analysis against 500- 400k Mw polystyrene standards Samples Mw Mn Polydispersity PLA pellets 160667 100950 1.59 PLA + 0% DEET 104200 60522 1.72 PLA + 2% DEET 99167 57808 1.72 PLA + 4% DEET 95876 54899 1.75 PLA + 7% DEET 79850 46608 1.71 Mosquito repellency of PLA fabrics The test showed that the untreated PLA fabrics produced relatively low level repellency compared to the treated fabrics. PLA fabrics sprayed with natural pyrethrum had similar performance in terms of mosquito repellency as those made from PLA co-extruded with pyrethrum. Overall, all treated fabrics were significantly more repellent than the untreated control PLA fabric; however, natural pyrethrumtreated fabrics (both sprayed and extruded) exhibited higher efficacy than DEET (synthetic) in repelling mosquitoes. The work has shown that it is possible to produce fabrics from PLA compounded with natural insecticides that are degradable and provide a high level of functionality in terms of repelling mosquitoes. Figure 2 shows a photograph of hand-produced woven fabric samples produced with PLA compounded with pyrethrum. The authors express their sincere gratitude to Dr. Tina Tosukhowong and Zachary Wilson of Myriant Corporation for their support on GPC work and for valuable discussion. In addition, thanks go to NSF (Award No. 1439639) and the Center for Bioplastics and Biocomposites (CB 2 ) for their funding, and thanks to NatureWorks for providing PLA pellets and yarns. References [1] Anna Petherick (2008-03-13). “How DEET jams insects’ smell sensors”. Nature News. [2] CDC, “Insect Repellent Use and Safety”. West Nile Virus. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 2007-01-12. [3] Kitchen; Lawrence. “The role of the United States military in the development of vector control products, including insect repellents, insecticides, and bed nets”. Journal of Vector Ecology. 34 (1): 50–61. doi:10.1111/j.1948-7134.2009.00007.x [4] Philip Werner, “DEET Dissolves Breathable Fabrics,” Section Hikers Backpacking Blog, (2009). [Online]. Available: deet-dissolves-breathable-fabrics-experimental-results/. [5] Grieco, John P., et al. “A new classification system for the actions of IRS chemicals traditionally used for malaria control.” PLos one 2.8 (2007): e716. | SEEING POLYMERS WITH DIFFERENT EYES... 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Hybrid cure systems EPDM compounds Energy-efficient mixing Acrylic impact modifiers Volume 12, July 2017 03| 2017 tpu for wire & cable heat and oil resistant tpv stabilisers review: high-temperature tpe Visit us at stand 10.3T51 BORN AMBITIOUS. is the commercial brand of our products, all obtained with sophisticated mixing processes. Our product portfolio includes: TPE-S and TPO compounds based on SBS and SEBS. MARFRAN®... a world of possibilities ! 2| 2017 Contact us to learn more about subscriptions, advertising opportunities, editorial specials: Our technical magazines and books create your expertise Tel. +49 2102 9345-0 · Fax +49 2102 9345-20 bioplastics MAGAZINE [02/18] Vol. 13 31

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