Degradable Polymers

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Oktober 1995



Few scientific developments in recent years have captured the popular imagination like the subject of'biodegradable' plastics. The reasons for this are complex and lie deep in the human subconscious. Discarded plastics are an intrusion on the sea shore and in the countryside. The fact that nature's litter abounds in the sea and on land is acceptable because it is biodegradable - even though it may take many years to be bioassimilated into the ecosystem. Plastics litter is not seen to be biodegradable and is aesthetically unacceptable because it does not blend into the natural environment. To the environmentally aware but often scientifically naive, biodegradation is seen to be the ecologically acceptable solution to the problem of plastic packaging waste and litter and some packaging manufacturers have exploited the 'green' consumer with exaggerated claims to 'environmentally friendly' biodegradable packaging materials. The principles underlying environmental degradation are not understood even by some manufacturers of 'biodegradable' materials and the claims made for them have been categorized as 'deceptive' by USA legislative authorities. This has set back the acceptance of plastics with controlled biodegradability as part of the overall waste and litter control strategy. At the opposite end of the commercial spectrum, the polymer manufactur­ ing industries, through their trade associations, have been at pains to discount the role of degradable materials in waste and litter management. This negative campaign has concentrated on the supposed incompatibility of degradable plastics with aspects of waste management strategy, notably materials recycling.


Introduction to the abiotic degradation of carbon chain
polymers. An overview of biodegradable polymers and biodegradation of
Techniques and mechanisms of polymer degradation.
Biodegradation of
aliphatic polyesters. Properties and applications
of bacterially
derived polyhydroxyalkanoates. Starch-polymer
composites. The science
and engineering of polymer composite
degradation. Ethylene-carbon
monoxide copolymers. Photo-biodegradable
plastics. Photodegradable
plastics in agriculture. The role of
degradable polymers in
agricultural systems. Plastics and the
environment. Degradable
polymers in waste and litter control. Index.


`The structure and presentation are excellent. It is a major contribution to the literature on polymer technology and will undoubtedly be widely read.'
Chemistry and Industry
`It will be of interest to polymer scientists in academia and industry, to environmental scientists, R&D scientists working on packaging, hygiene and agricultural applications, and biomedical scientists working on controlled drug release and prosthetics.'
Polymer International

EAN: 9780412590108
ISBN: 0412590107
Untertitel: Principles and applications. 1995. Auflage. Book. Sprache: Englisch.
Verlag: Springer
Erscheinungsdatum: Oktober 1995
Seitenanzahl: 286 Seiten
Format: gebunden
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