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Properties and Applications of Polyvinyl Alcohol

Views: 292     Author: Vickey     Publish Time: 2023-04-24      Origin: Site


Properties and Applications of Polyvinyl Alcohol

Polyvinyl alcohol (PVA), which is essentially made from polyvinyl acetate through hydrolysis, is easily degradable by biological organisms and, in water, is a solubilized crystalline polymer.

PVA is an artificial polymer that has been used worldwide since the first half of the 20th century. It has been applied in the industrial, commercial, medical, and food sectors and has been used to produce many end products, such as lacquers, resins, surgical threads, and food packaging materials that are often in contact with food.

PVA is a biodegradable imitation of natural polymers used in paper coating and textile sizing. This polymer is widely used by blending with other polymer compounds, such as biopolymers and other polymers with hydrophilic properties; it is utilized for various industrial applications to enhance the mechanical properties of films because of its compatible structure and hydrophilic properties.

Some man-made polymers, which are made from non-renewable and non-biodegradable sources, such as PVA, are available.

PVA is a widely used thermoplastic polymer that is benign to living tissues, harmless, and nontoxic. This polymer is widely investigated because of its use in cross-linked products and nanofillers.

The chemical and physical properties of PVA may vary based on the percentage of hydrolysis, which determines the PVA grade and its molecular weight. The surface properties of PVA fillers are fundamentally significant in the selection criteria for PVA fillers.

PVA itself has substantial tensile strength, greater flexibility, hardness, and gas and aroma barrier characteristics. Compared with any other known polymer, PVA demonstrates remarkably superior features as an oxygen barrier; however, to avoid the degradation of its permeability toward gas, it must be protected from moisture.

PVA, like proteins, is a water-soluble polymer. The water solubility and physical properties of PVA, including its film form, are highly affected by the degree of hydrolysis, molecular weight, and crystal precipitation.

PVA is partially crystalline upon formation and is characterized by properties such as chemical resistance, water solubility, and biodegradability.

The similarity in physical properties makes it compatible with human tissues. Biocompatible PVA has a structure that can absorb protein molecules, engage with minimal cell adhesion, and have no toxic effects; therefore, PVA membranes have been widely developed for biomedical applications. PVA can be chemically bound to or physically entangled with a nanoparticle surface.

PVA is already used in biomedical applications for its compatibility. PVA composites, such as PVA gels, are used in different biomedical fields, such as the manufacturing of contact lenses, artificial heart surgery, drug delivery systems, and wound dressings. In medical devices, PVA is used as a biomaterial because of its highly favorable properties, such as biocompatibility, nontoxicity, non-carcinogenicity, swelling properties, and bioadhesive characteristics. This material is very useful and desirable for biomedical applications.

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