Comparison of alkali treated sugarcane bagasse and softwood cellulose/polypropylene composites

Samson Mohomane, Linda Linganiso, Sandile P. Songca, Setumo V. Motloung, Lehlohonolo Koao, Tshwafo E. Motaung*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


In this study, composite materials from agricultural biomass and polypropylene (PP) thermoplastic were produced by melt compounding using a melt mixer. The chemical interaction of sugarcane bagasse (SCB)-PP and soft wood (SW)-PP composites and corresponding cellulose were verified by Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) analysis, X-ray diffraction (XRD) and Scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The cellulose composites were more crystalline than PP, trailed by PP/SCB and PP/SW composites. It was found that among composite materials, PP/SCB were least thermally stable compared to PP/SW. The addition of extracted cellulose decreased the thermal stability of PP/SCB composites at higher filler content due to poor interfacial bonding as compared to PP/SW composites. SEM results confirmed a rough morphology and the presence of many voids resulting from fibre pull-out in composites, especially for the ones with higher fibre content. Dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA) of both PP/SCB and PP/SW composites indicated improvement in the storage modulus compared with neat PP.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)401-409
Number of pages9
JournalPlastics, Rubber and Composites
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 21 Oct 2019


  • Polypropylene
  • cellulose
  • composites
  • soft wood
  • sugarcane bagasse


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