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Name: Windi
Status: other
Grade: 9-12
Country: Indonesia
Date: Summer 2014


Question:
I have a project to make a simple bioplastic from starch. But, I have read from a literature search that bioplastics from starch are easily ripped and not strong. What kind of natural compound can be used, and how can it make the bioplastic stronger? I would like to make it at home (home made, not industrial).



Replies:
Hi Windi,

Thanks for the question. Additives can be used to increase the strength of the bioplastic. For instance, you might want to add a little bit of a polymer (with a low melting temperature) to improve how the bioplastic behaves at high and low temperatures. You can add things such as antioxidants to increase the durability of your bioplastic and prevent photo-degradation. You can also add plasticizers such as butyl phthalate to flexibility to your bioplastic. A lot of the work is trial and error and is rather time consuming. I would suggest reading a book on polymers for more details.

I hope this helps. Thanks Jeff Grell


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