Biodegradation of polylactide in aerobic and anaerobic thermophilic conditions

Merja Itävaara (Corresponding Author), Sari Karjomaa, Johan-Fredrik Selin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

110 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Biodegradable polymers are designed to resist a number of environmental factors during use, but to be biodegradable under disposal conditions. The biodegradation of polylactide (PLLA) was studied at different elevated temperatures in both aerobic and anaerobic, aquatic and solid state conditions. In the aerobic aquatic headspace test the mineralisation of PLLA was very slow at room temperature, but faster under thermophilic conditions. The clear effect of temperature on the biodegradability of PLLA in the aquatic tests indicates that its polymer structure has to be hydrolysed before microorganisms can utilise it as a nutrient source. At similar elevated temperatures, the biodegradation of PLLA was much faster in anaerobic solid state conditions than in aerobic aquatic conditions. The behaviour of PLLA in the natural composting process was similar to that in the aquatic biodegradation tests, biodegradation starting only after the beginning of the thermophilic phase. These results indicate that PLLA can be considered as a compostable material, being stable during use at mesophilic temperatures, but degrading rapidly during waste disposal in compost or anaerobic treatment facilities.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)879-885
JournalChemosphere
Volume46
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2002
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Fingerprint

Biodegradation
biodegradation
Temperature
temperature
polymer
Polymers
Biodegradable polymers
Composting
Biodegradability
composting
Waste disposal
waste disposal
Microorganisms
compost
Nutrients
environmental factor
microorganism
poly(lactide)
mineralization
Soil

Keywords

  • polylactide
  • composting
  • biodegradation
  • biodegradation tests
  • thermophilic biodegradation

Cite this

Itävaara, Merja ; Karjomaa, Sari ; Selin, Johan-Fredrik. / Biodegradation of polylactide in aerobic and anaerobic thermophilic conditions. In: Chemosphere. 2002 ; Vol. 46, No. 6. pp. 879-885.
@article{28f23b4480fb4a5c956b663797f8c967,
title = "Biodegradation of polylactide in aerobic and anaerobic thermophilic conditions",
abstract = "Biodegradable polymers are designed to resist a number of environmental factors during use, but to be biodegradable under disposal conditions. The biodegradation of polylactide (PLLA) was studied at different elevated temperatures in both aerobic and anaerobic, aquatic and solid state conditions. In the aerobic aquatic headspace test the mineralisation of PLLA was very slow at room temperature, but faster under thermophilic conditions. The clear effect of temperature on the biodegradability of PLLA in the aquatic tests indicates that its polymer structure has to be hydrolysed before microorganisms can utilise it as a nutrient source. At similar elevated temperatures, the biodegradation of PLLA was much faster in anaerobic solid state conditions than in aerobic aquatic conditions. The behaviour of PLLA in the natural composting process was similar to that in the aquatic biodegradation tests, biodegradation starting only after the beginning of the thermophilic phase. These results indicate that PLLA can be considered as a compostable material, being stable during use at mesophilic temperatures, but degrading rapidly during waste disposal in compost or anaerobic treatment facilities.",
keywords = "polylactide, composting, biodegradation, biodegradation tests, thermophilic biodegradation",
author = "Merja It{\"a}vaara and Sari Karjomaa and Johan-Fredrik Selin",
year = "2002",
doi = "10.1016/S0045-6535(01)00163-1",
language = "English",
volume = "46",
pages = "879--885",
journal = "Chemosphere",
issn = "0045-6535",
publisher = "Elsevier",
number = "6",

}

Biodegradation of polylactide in aerobic and anaerobic thermophilic conditions. / Itävaara, Merja (Corresponding Author); Karjomaa, Sari; Selin, Johan-Fredrik.

In: Chemosphere, Vol. 46, No. 6, 2002, p. 879-885.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - Biodegradation of polylactide in aerobic and anaerobic thermophilic conditions

AU - Itävaara, Merja

AU - Karjomaa, Sari

AU - Selin, Johan-Fredrik

PY - 2002

Y1 - 2002

N2 - Biodegradable polymers are designed to resist a number of environmental factors during use, but to be biodegradable under disposal conditions. The biodegradation of polylactide (PLLA) was studied at different elevated temperatures in both aerobic and anaerobic, aquatic and solid state conditions. In the aerobic aquatic headspace test the mineralisation of PLLA was very slow at room temperature, but faster under thermophilic conditions. The clear effect of temperature on the biodegradability of PLLA in the aquatic tests indicates that its polymer structure has to be hydrolysed before microorganisms can utilise it as a nutrient source. At similar elevated temperatures, the biodegradation of PLLA was much faster in anaerobic solid state conditions than in aerobic aquatic conditions. The behaviour of PLLA in the natural composting process was similar to that in the aquatic biodegradation tests, biodegradation starting only after the beginning of the thermophilic phase. These results indicate that PLLA can be considered as a compostable material, being stable during use at mesophilic temperatures, but degrading rapidly during waste disposal in compost or anaerobic treatment facilities.

AB - Biodegradable polymers are designed to resist a number of environmental factors during use, but to be biodegradable under disposal conditions. The biodegradation of polylactide (PLLA) was studied at different elevated temperatures in both aerobic and anaerobic, aquatic and solid state conditions. In the aerobic aquatic headspace test the mineralisation of PLLA was very slow at room temperature, but faster under thermophilic conditions. The clear effect of temperature on the biodegradability of PLLA in the aquatic tests indicates that its polymer structure has to be hydrolysed before microorganisms can utilise it as a nutrient source. At similar elevated temperatures, the biodegradation of PLLA was much faster in anaerobic solid state conditions than in aerobic aquatic conditions. The behaviour of PLLA in the natural composting process was similar to that in the aquatic biodegradation tests, biodegradation starting only after the beginning of the thermophilic phase. These results indicate that PLLA can be considered as a compostable material, being stable during use at mesophilic temperatures, but degrading rapidly during waste disposal in compost or anaerobic treatment facilities.

KW - polylactide

KW - composting

KW - biodegradation

KW - biodegradation tests

KW - thermophilic biodegradation

U2 - 10.1016/S0045-6535(01)00163-1

DO - 10.1016/S0045-6535(01)00163-1

M3 - Article

VL - 46

SP - 879

EP - 885

JO - Chemosphere

JF - Chemosphere

SN - 0045-6535

IS - 6

ER -