Scientists from India performed an experiment where asphalt which is commonly used for road pavement was modified using castor oil based polyurethane to improve the properties of asphalt such as resistance to permanent deformation and to reduce the fatigue.
Polyurethane pre-polymer (PUP) was prepared by using castor oil and toluene diisocyanate (TDI). Asphalt modification was done using castor oil (C.O.) and PUP. Results showed that polymer modified asphalt showed improvement in properties such as hardness and softening point thereby making the pavement application smooth.
Scientists from Colombia performed an experiment where a kinetic model was developed for high CO2 pressure carbonation of epoxidized castor oil to be used in the production of thermoset polymers and non-isocyanate polyurethanes.
Carbonated castor oil was produced from the epoxidized oil at 100–130 °C and a constant pressure of CO2 (0.5 MPa). Because the polyfunctional character of the product, it could find applications as monomer and as a synthetic building block for other bio-based chemicals.
Scientists from India performed an experiment where they invented castor oil derived acrylic copolymers which can be used for surface coating applications.
Acrylic polyols containing hydroxy functional groups derived from castor oil were synthesized in the presence of an initiator. The synthesized resins when cured with suitable polyisocyanates or amino resin cross-linkers provided tough, glossy and chemical & weather resistant coatings.
Scientists from India performed an experiment to synthesize castor oil based acrylated derivatives to be used as potential lubricant basestocks. The acylated derivatives of castor oil, castor oil fatty acid methyl and 2-ethylhexyl esters were synthesized using different anhydrides in about 90–95% yield. All the products were structurally characterized using NMR and IR spectral data.
Results showed that castor oil could have use in hydraulic and metal working fluids and other industrial fluids with their wide range of properties.
Scientists from Korea performed an experiment to fabricate castor oil/PCL based bio-polyurethane foam reinforced with nano cellulose. PU foam based on biomaterials was investigated to replace traditional petroleum-based polyol. Polyols were synthesized from castor oil (CO) and polycaprolactone (PCL). In addition, the effects of the nanocellulose on the thermal and mechanical properties of CO-based PU foam were investigated.
Results showed that addition of the nanocellulose could be an effective way to improve the mechanical and thermal properties of PU foams.
Castor oil-derived decanediamide, as a novel flexible epoxy curing agent, was synthesized by scientists from China through the method of esterization with methanol and ammonolysis with ammonia. The chemical structure and thermal properties of this novel curing agent were confirmed by FTIR.
The results showed that the prepared decanediamide had a high yield of 85.4%, and the epoxy resin cured by the decanediamide revealed a slight decrease in the mechanical properties and thermal stability, and a longer pot life at high temperature compared with that of a conventional epoxy curing agent.
Jamaica has undertaken a study on the local castor oil industry as the country moves to take advantage of a global market expected to value an estimated US$1.81 billion by 2020.
The study was commissioned by the Jamaica Promotions Corporation (JAMPRO) and examined recommendations for development and steps to capitalise on the Jamaica Black Castor Oil value chain.
Recent research shows production of jet fuel from ricinoleic acid methyl ester.
Experiments conducted earlier have shown the possibility of producing jet fuel from castor oil or hydro processing castor oil.
Now scientists from China have found that jet fuel could be produced from castor oil derived ricinoleic acid methyl ester. A unique hydroxyl group in the ricinoleic acid chain induced a special thermal rearrangement reaction in medium chain fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) and heptanal formation. This reaction was used as a starting point for the production of jet fuel.
Results showed that the carbon selectivity in the castor oil to jet fuel process was as high as 90%.
Researchers from Finland have found a method to produce novel castor oil segmented thermoplastic polyurethanes which have controlled mechanical properties.
Thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) is an elastomer that is fully thermoplastic. Like all thermoplastic elastomers, TPU is elastic and melt-processable. TPU is a linear segmented block copolymer composed of hard and soft segments. The hard segment can be either aromatic or aliphatic. The soft segment can either be a polyether or polyester type, depending on the application.
The new study shows that it is possible to produce thermoplastic polyurethanes using castor oil via polyaddition approach where the formation of prepolymers needs to be carried out with the addition of small amount of castor oil and excess of diisocyanate in the very first step. This is followed by the addition of the other polyols and finally a low molecular weight chain extender.
Results showed that the synthesized polyurethanes exhibited good biocompatibility and high transparency.
Recent study shows that a two-step mediation of castor oil could overcome the problem of polyaddition threshold of castor oil during polyurethane formation.
The study has been conducted by scientists from India who have found that the mediation facilitates formation of polyurethane systems directly from castor oil without the need for triricinolein chain extension or the use of supplementary hydroxyl compounds.
The process involves refluxing castor oil with n-butyl lithium in the presence of a solvent followed by water addition.
Results showed that the mediation introduces two new compounds in castor oil namely, a lithiated diglyceride and a lithium salt of fatty acid. Characterization studies of the newly synthesized polyurethane were also carried out.