Blending ferulic acid derivatives and polylactic acid into biobased and transparent elastomeric materials with shape memory properties

Antoine Gallos, Jean-Marc Crowet, Laurent Michely, Vikram S. Raghuwanshi, Matthieu M. Mention, Valérie Langlois, Manuel Dauchez, Gil Garnier, Florent Allais

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Thanks to its remarkable properties such as sustainability, compostability, biocompatibility, and transparency, poly-l-lactic acid (PLA) would be a suitable replacement for oil-based polymers should it not suffer from low flexibility and poor toughness, restricting its use to rigid plastic by excluding elastomeric applications. Indeed, there are few fully biobased and biodegradable transparent elastomers-PLA-based or not-currently available. In the last decades, many strategies have been investigated to soften PLA and enhance its toughness and elongation at break by using plasticizers, oligomers, or polymers. This work shows how a ferulic acid-derived biobased additive (BDF) blends with a common rigid and brittle commercial grade of polylactic acid to provide a transparent non-covalently cross-linked elastomeric material with shape memory behavior exhibiting an elongation at break of 434% (vs 6% for pristine PLA). Through a structure-activity relationship analysis conducted with BDF analogues and a modeling study, we propose a mechanism based on π-πstacking to account for the elastomeric properties. Blending ferulic acid derivatives with polylactic acid generates a new family of fully sustainable transparent elastomeric materials with functional properties such as shape memory.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1568–1578
Number of pages11
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 10 Mar 2021

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