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Preparation of Elastomeric Nanocomposites Using Nanocellulose and Recycled Alum Sludge for Flexible Dielectric Materials

Sun, Dongyang; Saw, Bernard L.H.; Onyianta, Amaka J.; Wang, Bowen; Wilson, Callum; O'Rourke, Dominic; See, Chan H.; Popescu, Carmen-Mihaela; Dorris, Mark; Shyha, Islam; Lu, Zhilun


Bernard L.H. Saw

Amaka J. Onyianta

Bowen Wang

Dominic O'Rourke

Carmen-Mihaela Popescu

Mark Dorris

Zhilun Lu


Flexible dielectric materials with environmental-friendly, low-cost and high-energy density characteristics are in increasing demand as the world steps into the new Industrial 4.0 era. In this work, an elastomeric nanocomposite was developed by incorporating two components: cellulose nanofibrils (CNFs) and recycled alum sludge, as the reinforcement phase and to improve the dielectric properties, in a bio-elastomer matrix. CNF and alum sludge were produced by processing waste materials that would otherwise be disposed to landfills. A biodegradable elastomer polydimethylsiloxane was used as the matrix and the nanocomposites were processed by casting the materials in Petri dishes. Nanocellulose extraction and heat treatment of alum sludge were conducted and characterized using various techniques including scanning electron microscopy (SEM), thermogravimetric analysis/derivative thermogravimetric (TGA/DTG) and X-ray diffraction (XRD) analysis. When preparing the nanocomposite samples, various amount of alum sludge was added to examine their impact on the mechanical, thermal and electrical properties. Results have shown that it could be a sustainable practice of reusing such wastes in preparing flexible, lightweight and miniature dielectric materials that can be used for energy storage applications.


Sun, D., Saw, B. L., Onyianta, A. J., Wang, B., Wilson, C., O'Rourke, D., …Lu, Z. (2023). Preparation of Elastomeric Nanocomposites Using Nanocellulose and Recycled Alum Sludge for Flexible Dielectric Materials. Journal of Advanced Dielectrics, 13(01), Article 2242008.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Nov 7, 2022
Online Publication Date Dec 7, 2022
Publication Date 2023-02
Deposit Date Nov 11, 2022
Publicly Available Date Feb 14, 2023
Journal Journal of Advanced Dielectrics
Print ISSN 2010-135X
Electronic ISSN 2010-1368
Publisher World Scientific Publishing
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 13
Issue 01
Article Number 2242008
Keywords Nanocellulose, biodegradable, sustainable, alum sludge, nanocomposite, flexible, dielectric
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