Effect of crosslinking on nanocellulose superabsorbent biodegradability

Laila Hossain, Ruth M.Barajas Ledesma, Joanne Tanner, Gil Garnier

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7 Citations (Scopus)


Superabsorbent polymer (SAP) is an excellent material to absorb and retain a wide range of fluids inside its structure, making it desirable to engineer advanced applications. However, commercial SAPs are products of the petrochemistry, and their non-biodegradability and end of life are significant environmental issue. In this study, we have developed TEMPO oxidized nanocellulose superabsorbent and quantified the effect of crosslinking on biodegradation in soil under enzymatic (cellulase) assisted conditions. CO2 emission shows that both type of SAP emits similar amount of CO2. Hydrolysis of residual SAPs in soil after specific time intervals shows that chemically crosslinked SAP degrades to a higher extent (∼56%) compared to neat nanocellulose SAP (∼41%). However, without enzyme, their degradation are similar (∼8–12%) and much lower than under enzymatic condition. These results suggest that nanocellulose SAPs: both neat and crosslinked -can easily and rapidly be degraded at home or in the compost of the garden under proper enzymatic assisted conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100199
Number of pages6
JournalCarbohydrate Polymer Technologies and Applications
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2022


  • Biodegradation
  • Cellulase
  • CO
  • Crosslinked
  • Inhibition
  • Nanocellulose
  • SAP

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