Material Technology

Effect of solvent composition on the association behavior of pectin in methanol-water mixtures

Tho, I. , Kjøniksen, A.-L. , Knudsen, K.D. , Nyström, B.
European polymer journal, Vol. 42, no. 5 (2006), 1164-1172
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Turbidity, small-angle neutron scattering (SANS), and dynamic light scattering measurements have been carried out on semidilute systems of pectin in methanol–water media of various composition ratios. Structural and dynamical properties of pectin dissolved in water–methanol mixtures (case I) are compared with the corresponding conditions when pectin was dissolved in water before the prescribed amounts of methanol were added (case II). The turbidity rises as the percentage of methanol in the mixture increases and this trend is much stronger when the first procedure is used to dissolve pectin. The wavelength dependence of the turbidity indicates that larger association complexes are formed for the samples prepared according to case I. These findings indicate that at a given methanol–water composition, the preparation procedure in case I gives rise to poorer thermodynamic conditions of the system. Local structures probed by SANS experiments do not reveal any significant differences between the systems prepared by the two different procedures. The dynamic light scattering (DLS) results show that increasing methanol concentration in the mixture promotes the formation of association complexes and the disengagement relaxation time of individual chains or clusters is longer at higher percentage of methanol for case II. This can be attributed to stronger entanglement effects in case II. The features from DLS can be rationalized in the framework of the coupling model for constrained and interconnecting systems. Copyright Elsevier
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