Extraction and Characterization of Natural Fibres from Plantain (Musa paradisiaca) Stalk Wastes

Document Type : Research Note


1 Chemical Engineering Department, Faculty of Engineering and Technology, University of Ilorin, Ilorin, Nigeria

2 Environmental Engineering and Management Research Group, Ton Duc Thang University, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam


Plantain stalks obtained from solid waste stream of Ganmo market in Ilorin was used in this study. Natural fibres extraction from waste plantain stalk was achieved using biological retting methods. The natural fibre was rented from the waste stalk after 24 days of soaking in water. The extracted fibres were exposed to 2, 4 and 6% alkali solution (NaOH) treatment for two hours, washed and dried in the oven for 7 hours. Elemental analysis of raw plantain fibres showed the presence of elements like Indium, Potassium, Silicon and Calcium among others. Tensile strength analysis of the fibres, for single fibre strands showed that the 2% treated fibre showed distinctly promising potential with the highest tensile characteristics of young modulus, stress at break and force at peak of 52864.366N/mm2, 5398.536N/mm2 and 2.650N, respectively. Evaluation of the chemical composition of plantain by FTIR spectroscopy indicated that treatment of natural fibres using NaOH beyond 2% have a negative impact on the plantain fibre properties. Through alkali exposure, the fibre configuration presents small variations in composition. It is consequently apparent that alkali treatment with concentration of less than 2% NaOH is sufficient to remove hemicelluloses and to obtain the optimum tensile effect.