Radial distribution function of natural fibres and synthetic water soluble polymers using X-ray diffraction

Urs, G Thejas; Prakash, M B Nanda; Ananda, H T ; Somashekar, R


Radial distribution functions for few natural polymers like silk, cotton, and synthetic water soluble polymers like polyvinyl alcohol, hydroxy propyl methylcellulose and carboxy methyl cellulose have been studied using their X-ray diffraction data. It is observed that the radial distribution function for the polymers of the same family gives same correlation function, showing that the pair correlation or the radial molecular arrangement between the nearest neighbors in these polymers are same, irrespective of their nature and existence. The detailed report of radial distribution functions of polymers is briefly explained in this study and the comparison between the samples belonging to the same family is carried out on the basis of inter-molecular interactions. The microstructural parameters like crystallite size and lattice strain are also computed for all the samples using W-H plot method. The crystallite sizes obtained for these polymers are compared and then interpreted with the obtained pair correlation functions. It is observed that the natural fibres show higher correlation function than synthetic polymers studied in comparison, this is due to ordered arrangement of molecules which are found only in some pockets of a general amorphous regions of natural polymers. The standard method of computation of pair correlation value using X-ray data is also given here.


Cotton; Microstructural parameters; Natural polymers; Pair correlation; Silk; X-Ray diffraction

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