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Research Article Open Access

Development of Superabsorbents from Agro-Wastes: Microwave-Assisted Synthesis of Green Composite Superabsorbent, Sugarcane Bagasse Fibre (Scbf-G-Phema)/Mmt

Abstract

Agrowaste sugarcane bagasse fibre (SCBF) based green composites were prepared by a series of experiments such as bleaching and grafting with 2-Hydroxyethyl methacrylate (HEMA) together with N,N’-methylenebisacrylamide (MBA) and ammonium persulfate (APS) as crosslinker and initiator respectively using hexaamminecobalt(III)chloride complex as catalyst and montmorillonite (MMT) as additive in a microwave oven. UV-Visible spectral analysis revealed various interactions between the developed complexes with other reacting components. The synthesized (SCBF-g-PHEMA)/MMT composites were characterised by FT-IR, and their morphology was imaged by scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Water absorbency and biodegradability of these composites in soil and sludge water were evaluated for their novel commercial importance as superabsorbent. The water absorption of the grafted composites with MMT was more than that of the virgin and the copolymer fibre. The results of this work can be used in designing novel structural materials like superabsorbents which could have immense application in the field of horticulture in developing green garden in desert, medical devices in diapers, sanitary napkins, etc.

Sanjaya Rout and Prafulla K Sahoo*

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