Polymer Composite Film Based on Polyethylene and Organoclay

Yakubu Azeh1,*, Yohanna Bello Paiko1, Stephen Chinenyeze Agwuncha1, Awaal Yusuf Abubakar2, Oluwaseyi Damilare Saliu3, Musa Umar1, Umar Badeggi Muhammad1 and Garba Babatunde4

1Department of Chemistry, Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida University, Lapai, Nigeria

2Department of Biochemistry Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida University, Lapai, Nigeria

3Department of Industrial Chemistry, University of Ilorin, Ilorin, Nigeria

4Department of Chemical and Geological Sciences, Al-Hikmah University, Ilorin, Nigeria

*To whom correspondence to be addressed: E-mail: [email protected]; [email protected]


Clay is an inorganic material with hydrophilic surface which cannot interact well with hydrophobic polymer as a reinforcement filler phase. However, surface modification allows useful applications as fillers in composite fabrication with most hydrophobic polymers. To achieve this, native clay was activated by mineral acids, modified through acetylation using commercial vinegar to convert the hydrophilic clay surface to hydrophobic one, capable of interaction with polyethylene. The formulated composite films were biodegraded after one month of test experiment carried out at different locations. Scanning electron microscopy analysis of composite films evidently showed that surface compatible, dispersible and exfoliated type composites were formed. FT-IR spectroscopy revealed the presence of C=O, -COO-, -CH3 and -C-CH3 due to acetylation. Absorption studies using water, acid/base show that the composite films exhibited good resistance to these solvents. Biodegradation studies showed high microbial activities with samples buried at refuse dump sites. EDX results revealed the presence of kaolinite and montmorillonite as major minerals, whereas radioactive elements were detected in the studied clay. This study demonstrated the useful application of commercial vinegar for the modification of clay for better surface interaction with polyethylene for composite formulation.


Organo-clay, Composite, Polyethylene, Biodegradation.

  • Asian J. Mat. Chem. /
  •  2019 /
  •  4(1-2) /
  •  pp 7-13
  • DOI:10.14233/ajmc.2019.AJMC-P72