Journal of Oil Palm Research Vol. 32 (4) December 2020, p. 621-629



Received: 29 November 2019   Accepted: 14 February 2020   Published Online: 11 September 2020

The interest for microfibrillated cellulose (MFC) has been present within the academic sector since the 1980s, but recently this material has become commercially available as it is growing significantly in the industrial sector. Therefore, in this study the oil palm empty fruit bunch fibre (OPEFB-fibre) was selected to be synthesised into MFC. This study focused on the effect of acid concentrations on the isolation of MFC from OPEFB-fibre using the acid hydrolysis method, followed by ultrasonication. The important parameter studied was the concentration of sulphuric acid (10% to 40%) while reaction time and temperature were kept constant. The resulting MFC was analysed using Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), X-ray diffractometer (XRD) and scanning electron microscope (SEM). Based on the FTIR results, it was found that the structure of cellulose was retained after undergoing the acid hydrolysis process. The highest thermal stability was obtained when MFC was treated with 20% sulphuric acid which was determined by using TGA. The XRD method was used to study the structural property of the MFC and the result showed that the MFC produced had 60% of crystallinity index. The morphological features were identified using SEM. The results showed that the particle size of MFC ranged between 10 µm to 200 µm. As a result, the parameters used tend to influence the physico-chemical properties of MFC produced and it has the potential to facilitate filler increase in wood-free paper industry.


[APA 6th - American Psychological Association, 6th Edition]

Ismail, F., Othman, N. E. A., Wahab, N. A., & Aziz, A. A. (2020). Influence of sulphuric acid concentration on the physico-chemical properties of microfibrillated cellulose from oil palm empty fruit bunch fibre S. Journal of Oil Palm Research, 32(4), 621-629. doi:10.21894/jopr.2020.0057

* Malaysian Palm Oil Board,
6 Persiaran Institusi, Bandar Baru Bangi,
43000 Kajang, Selangor, Malaysia.

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