Polymers | 2021

Enhancement of Adhesion Characteristics of Low-Density Polyethylene Using Atmospheric Plasma Initiated-Grafting of Polyethylene Glycol



The low-density polyethylene/aluminum (LDPE/Al) joint in Tetra Pak provides stability and strength to food packaging, ensures protection against outside moisture, and maintains the nutritional values and flavors of food without the need for additives in the food products. However, a poor adhesion of LDPE to Al, due to its non-polar surface, is a limiting factor and extra polymeric interlayers or surface treatment is required. Plasma-assisted grafting of the LDPE surface with different molecular weight compounds of polyethylene glycol (PEG) was used to improve LDPE/Al adhesion. It was found that this surface modification contributed to significantly improve the wettability of the LDPE surface, as was confirmed by contact angle measurements. The chemical composition changes after plasma treatment and modification process were observed by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). A surface morphology was analyzed by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and atomic force microscopy (AFM). Adhesion characteristics of LDPE/Al adhesive joints were analyzed by the peel tests. The most significant adhesion improvement of the PEG modified LDPE surface was achieved using 10.0 wt.% aqueous (6000 M) PEG solution, while the peel resistance increased by approximately 54 times in comparison with untreated LDPE.

Volume 13
Pages None
DOI 10.3390/polym13081309
Language English
Journal Polymers

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