Preparation of single or double-network chitosan/poly(vinyl alcohol) gel films through selectively cross-linking method

Songmiao Liang, Linshu Liu, Qingrong Huang, Kit Yam

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

96 Scopus citations


A selectively cross-linking method, which is based on the "di-diol" interaction between poly(vinyl alcohol) and borate and the strong electrostatic interaction between chitosan and tripolyphosphate, was developed. Chitosan/poly(vinyl alcohol) films cross-linked separately with borate, tripolyphosphate and borate/tripolyphosphate were then prepared in terms of this method. Water vapor permeation, mechanical strength, surface morphology and molecular interactions of the films were studied by water permeation test, texture test, atomic force microscopy and ATR-FTIR spectroscopy. With the introduction of cross-linking structure, there is a large improvement in elastic modulus from 271 ± 14.2 to 551 ± 14.7 MPa and a large decrease in water vapor permeability from (5.41 ± 0.21) × 10-7 g/m h Pa to (3.12 ± 0.24) × 10-7 g/m h Pa of chitosan/poly(vinyl alcohol) films. The surface morphology of the cross-linked films exhibits a nanoparticle aggregation structure. The size and aggregation behavior of these nanoparticles are strongly related to the type of cross-linker. Furthermore, ATR-FTIR results indicate that strong interaction between polymer matrix and cross-linker exists in our system. This work provides a simple and efficient way to prepare chitosan/poly(vinyl alcohol) films with controllable network structure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)718-724
Number of pages7
JournalCarbohydrate Polymers
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 19 2009

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Organic Chemistry
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Materials Chemistry


  • Borate
  • Chitosan/poly(vinyl alcohol)
  • Cross-linking
  • Double-network
  • Tripolyphosphate

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