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Nanocellulose of agroindustrial waste and its potential application in water and energy
Agave tequilana is an outstanding crop in the western semi-arid region of Mexico and is the base for the international renowned drink called tequila. The industrialization of tequila production has led to an extensive farming, being the cause of environmental deterioration and waste production. The residue of the industrial activity of tequila production is commonly called agave bagasse. This material finds its origin on the core of the plant and not on the leaves, as the leaves are left in the ground they also represent an unused resource. The importance of lignocellulosic residues in new applications is increasing rapidly, accordingly the methods for processing these materials are being assessed by a wide range of investigators. To produce a liter of tequila agave, 8 kg are required and generate 3.2 kg of agave bagasse as waste. The management of this waste represents a big problem and so far these residues have been used as compost and have a low economic value. Therefore, a lot of studies are being developed with the aim of testing different sources and raw materials. In this sense, the study arises as to obtain nanocellulose from an agroindustrial waste as agave bagasse prepared at different bleaching treatments, like organosolve, soda and sodium chlorite (NaClO2). Cellulose is a polymer that in nanoscale form offers excellent mechanical properties, this makes it a versatile material for various applications. In water, nanocellulose has the potential to decontaminate and absorb contaminants an in energy has potential as a base material for electronic devices.