Fractal dimension of cellulose powders analyzed by multilayer BET adsorption of water and nitrogen
2003 (English)In: Journal of Physical Chemistry B, ISSN 1520-6106, E-ISSN 1520-5207, Vol. 107, no 51, 14378-14382 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
The aim of this study was to show that multilayer fractal Brunauer-Emmett-Teller (mfBET) theory can be used as a tool to obtain information about the distribution of water in cellulose powder particles of varying crystallinity. Microcrystalline cellulose, agglomerated micronized cellulose, low-crystallinity cellulose, and cellulose powders from green and brown algae were characterized by scanning electron microscopy and mfBET analysis on water and nitrogen adsorption isotherms. The distribution of water in the cellulose materials was found to be characterized by a fractal dimension smaller than 1.5 for all powders. The results showed that for highly crystalline cellulose materials, such as Cladophora cellulose, the cellulose-water interactions take place mainly on cellulose fibril surfaces adjacent to open pores without causing any significant swelling of the material. For less ordered celluloses the water interaction was found to take place inside the bulk material and the water uptake process caused the pore volume to swell between 1 and 2 orders in magnitude. For the Cladophora cellulose, the thickness of the adsorbed water layer at the outer cut off of the fractal region was found to coincide very well with the average pore size obtained from nitrogen adsorption measurements. The multilayer fractal BET analysis on nitrogen adsorption isotherms showed that the particles could be characterized by fractal dimensions between 2.13 and 2.50. We conclude that water adsorption has the ability to alter the structure of the studied material and reveal a sorption-induced, "apparent" fractal structure over a relatively narrow length scale interval, while nitrogen adsorption probes the substrate morphology over a wide range of length scales and reveals the "true" fractal structure.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2003. Vol. 107, no 51, 14378-14382 p.
Engineering and Technology
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-92515DOI: 10.1021/jp034117wScopusID: 2-s2.0-0345803800OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-92515DiVA: diva2:165627