Polylactide (PLA) and its blends with poly(butylene succinate) (PBS)
A brief review
Polylactide (PLA), poly(butylene succinate) (PBS) and blends thereof have been researched in the last two decades due to their commercial availability and the upcoming requirements for using bio-based chemical building blocks. Blends consisting of PLA and PBS offer specific material properties. However, their thermodynamically favored biphasic composition often restricts their applications. Many approaches have been taken to achieve better compatibility for tailored and improved material properties. This review focuses on the modification of PLA/PBS blends in the timeframe from 2007 to early 2019. Firstly, neat polymers of PLA and PBS are introduced in respect of their origin, their chemical structure, thermal and mechanical properties. Secondly, recent studies for improving blend properties are reviewed mainly under the focus of the toughness modification using methods including simple blending, plasticization, reactive compatibilization, and copolymerization. Thirdly, we follow up by reviewing the effect of PBS addition, stereocomplexation, nucleation, and processing parameters on the crystallization of PLA. Next, the biodegradation and disintegration of PLA/PBS blends are summarized regarding the European and International Standards, influencing factors, and degradation mechanisms. Furthermore, the recycling and application potential of the blends are outlined.