Thermal Expansion of Self-Organized and Shear-Oriented Cellulose Nanocrystal Films

Jairo A. Diaz, Purdue University
Xiawa Wu, Birck Nanotechnology Center, Purdue University
Ashlie Martini, California State University - Stanislaus
Jeffrey P. Youngblood, Purdue University
Robert J. Moon, Birck Nanotechnology Center, Purdue University

Date of this Version



The coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE) of cellulose nanocrystal (CNC) films was characterized using novel experimental techniques complemented by molecular simulations. The characteristic birefringence exhibited by CNC films was utilized to calculate the in-plane CTE of self-organized and shear-oriented self-standing CNC films from room temperature to 100 degrees C using polarized light image correlation. CNC alignment was estimated via Hermans order parameter (S) from 2D X-ray diffraction measurements. We found that films with no preferential CNC orientation through the thickness (S: similar to 0.0) exhibited an isotropic CTE (similar to 25 ppm/K). In contrast, films with aligned CNC orientations (S: similar to 0.4 to 0.8) had an anisotropic CTE response: For the highest CNC alignment (S: 0.8), the CTE parallel to CNC alignment was similar to 9 ppm/K, while that perpendicular to CNC alignment was similar to 158 ppm/K CNC film thermal expansion was proposed to be due primarily to single crystal expansion and CNC-CNC interfacial motion. The relative contributions of inter- and intracrystal responses to heating were explored using molecular dynamics simulations.


Nanoscience and Nanotechnology