VARIATION OF CHEMICAL PROPERTIES, CRYSTALLINE STRUCTURE AND CALORIFIC VALUES OF NATIVE MALAYSIAN BAMBOO SPECIES
The chemical properties of four common Malaysian bamboo species locally known as Beting (Gigantochloa levis), Semantan (Gigantochloa scortechinii), Lemang (Schizostachyum brachyladum) and Akar (Bambusa vulgaris) were studied. Chemical analysis shows that the alkaline extractive content for Malaysian bamboo species studied was within 24.4% to 25.6%, ethanol-toluene extractive content for Malaysian bamboo species was within 4.0% to 7.2% and water extractive content was within 10.4% to 12.8%. The average value of holocellulose content for Malaysian bamboo was between 64.5% to 70.67%, Klason lignin within 25.3% to 28.4%, cellulose content was between 28.5% to 33.8% and α-cellulose content for all bamboo species was within the range of 40.7% to 47.9%. The crystallinity of bamboo samples was between 42.0 to 44.4%, indicating their semi-crystalline structure. Heating value of bamboo ranged between 17.0 MJ/kg to 18.1 MJ/kg with G. scortechinii having the highest heating value.. The Inductive Couple Plasma Atomic Emission Spectroscopy (ICP-ES) analysis showed that Potassium (K) and Calcium (C) were the major elements in the ash of all bamboo samples. This study demonstrates the potential of native bamboo species as an alternative sustainable raw material to wood for a wide range of applications.
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