Is there value in chemical modification of fish scale surfaces?
Fish scales are an abundant biowaste apparently unused, except for isolating major components as feedstocks, sacrificing the useful properties inherent to scales. We modified scale surfaces using hydrophilic and hydrophobic (meth)acrylates and tetraethylorthosilicate with in situ polymerization, and partial degradation of the biomineral or collagen layer. Chemical changes were assessed qualitatively by Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy and quantitatively by nanomechanical analysis. No modification was selective but they were “preferential”. Hydrophobic modifications were inefficient and reduced scale modulus. Inorganic and hydrophilic modifications were efficient and increased modulus. On adding sodium-citrate-modified scales to a weak alginate hydrogel, rheology showed an order of magnitude increase in storage modulus compared to alginate with no or unmodified scale reinforcement. Fish scales can be a useful new reinforcement. This work highlights simple pathways to manipulate surface composition and modulus of waste fish scale to enhance composite properties.
Journal of Applied Polymer Science
Xiang, Xu; Long, Fei; Narkar, Ameya; Kinnunen, Ronald E.; Shahbazian-Yassar, Reza; Lee, Bruce P.; and Heiden, Patricia A., "Is there value in chemical modification of fish scale surfaces?" (2015). Department of Biomedical Engineering Publications. 22.