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8th Edition of

International Conference on Materials Science and Engineering

March 10-12, 2025 | Rome, Italy

Materials 2021

Maria Borrego Algarra

Speaker at Minerals, Metallurgy and Materials 2021 - Maria Borrego Algarra
University of Huelva, Spain
Title : Development of lignin-PVP micro- and nanostructures by electrospinning and their thickening capacity in oil media


Developing oleogelators and oil thickeners from natural polymers with adequate properties is a challenge today. This work explores the ability of the different micro- nano-architectures based on low-sulfonate lignin (LSL)/polyvinylpyrrolidone (PVP) to structure castor oil. LSL and PVP were dissolved in DMF and micro- nano-structures were generated from the solution by electrospinning. PVP acted as a cospinning polymer in the process to improve the spinnability of LSL. The LSL: PVP ratio was varied in order to obtain different architectures at different concentrations (8-15 wt.%). Physico-chemical properties and rheological behaviour of the polymer solutions were assessed to explain the electrospinnability for fiber formation. The morphology of electrospun nanostructures was mainly dependent on the rheological properties of the solution. Electrosprayed nanoparticles or micro-sized particles connected by thin filaments were obtained from solutions with low LSL: PVP concentrations and/or high LSL: PVP ratios, whereas beaded nanofibers or bead-free nanofiber were produced by increasing concentration and/or decreasing LSL: PVP ratio, as a consequence of enhanced extensional viscoelastic properties and non-Newtonian characteristics. Electrospun LSL: PVP nanofibers were able to form oleogels simply by dispersing them into castor oil at concentrations between 10 and 30 wt.%. The rheological properties of the oleogels may be tailored by modifying the LSL: PVP ratio and concentration of nanofibers.

In summary, electrospinning of lignin/PVP solutions can be proposed as a simple and effective method to produce nanofibers for oil structuring. These findings may find diverse application in fields like food techonology and lubricant industry, as advanced functional materials for diverse.



Maria Borrego received a B.S. in Industrial Chemical Engineering from University of Huelva (Spain) in 2018. After graduation she joined for the R&D and Development Department of Fertiberia factory. She got her M.Sc. degree in Chemical Engineering from University of Huelva in 2020 and she entered UHU’s Chemical Engineering PhD program in January 2021 under the guidance of Prof. Jose M. Franco and L. Jose E. Martin-Alfonso in the Chemical Product and Process Technology Research (Pro2TecS) center. Maria’s research interests include developing functional materials such as oleogels and nanostructures via electrospinning based on biodegradable and biocompatible ligno cellulosic derivatives among other biopolymers.