Cellulose and Pectin Aerogels : Towards their nano-structuration

Abstract : The work aims at developing a new generation of bio-based aerogels, mechanically robust and thermally very insulating (super-insulating). Cellulose aerogels, called “aerocelluloses”, are known to be very porous and ultra-lightweight materials but present a wide range of pores and therefore moderate thermal insulating properties. We studied several approaches for tuning aerocellulose towards a finer and nanostructured morphology: modification of solvent, cellulose crosslinking and formation of cellulose-based hybrids. It was cellulose cross-linking that greatly improved aerocellulose structure towards a nano-structuration, reflected by the increase of specific surface area and the decrease of thermal conductivity, close to super-insulation (0.026 W.m-1.K-1). Another polysaccharide, pectin, was used for preparing a highly porous and very lightweight aerogel called “aeropectin”. Aeropectin and aerocellulose were compared; they present many similarities in their morphology. However, aeropectin has better thermal properties, reaching super-insulation (0.020 W.m-1.K-1). These bio-aerogels are 100% bio-based, environmentally friendly and present a high potential not only for thermal insulation but also for a broad range of other applications such as controlled drug release and catalysis. The formation of silica aerogel directly inside the porous structure of aeropectin increased the specific surface area up to 700 m²/g and decreased thermal conductivity (0.017 W.m-1.K-1).
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Cyrielle Rudaz. Cellulose and Pectin Aerogels : Towards their nano-structuration. Other. Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Mines de Paris, 2013. English. ⟨NNT : 2013ENMP0036⟩. ⟨pastel-00957296⟩

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