A lot of the things that are being produced these days now take into consideration the effects that these have on our environment. Products that need fossil fuels to be produced and items that are created with the use of non-biodegradable substances are now being rethought and reconfigured to help keep the environment clean and safe. This includes nanotechnology since a lot of nanotech products are produced from fossil fuels like carbon fibers and such. These make them non-biodegradable, and while ultimately useful, they still pose a threat to the environment in the long run. This is where bio-based nanotechnology comes in.
Using Natural Fibers Instead of Synthetic Ones
When it comes to producing biodegradable alternatives to products that use synthetic fibers, natural fibers are often considered as alternatives despite the fact that some of these natural fibers lack the high-performance attributes that most synthetic fibers possess. Some of the natural fibers that have been used to replace these synthetic fibers include wool and cotton. However, since these prove to be rather poor substitutes for the synthetic fibers gained from fossil fuels, another source is being considered. Bio-based nanotechnology has found that cellulose is one of the most ideal replacements for this need due to the fact that these cellulose nanofibers have unique properties that can be useful for nanotechnology uses.
Difficulties and Solutions to Cellulose Nanofiber
The use of cellulose nanofiber, which is found in natural plant bodies for use in the manufacture of high-performance packaging that is environmentally friendly, actually presented quite a few problems to the scientists that were researching the possibility. One of the problems that they encountered was the microfibril length and the impairment of the structural potential of these nanofibers when these were developed with the use of old methods. This was overcome with the use of newer methods of conversion that helped these researchers develop cellulose nanofibers that measured 4 to 5 nm in width and were around a few microns long. This means that bio-based nanotechnology can now be utilized for the many nanofiber-based products that we need and use.
Sustainable and Ecologically Sound Alternative
The use of wood cellulose and the high-crystalline cellulose fibers that are found in it in the creation of bio-based nanotechnology products is ideal for this day and age due to the ever-increasing problems we have with sustainability and with products harming the environment. This is so because these are made with the use of materials that will help the Earth keep itself green and at the same time give people the products that they want and need without putting the planet in more danger than it already is in. The challenge now for scientists and researchers regarding this sustainable and ecologically sound alternative to fossil-fuel-based nanofibers is to come up with a way to engineer these green nano materials into products that can be used effectively by all in many ways. An example of a product that can be made from these bio-based nanofibers is biodegradable packaging materials and other similar applications.