Materials (Basel). 2022 Apr 30;15(9):3250. doi: 10.3390/ma15093250.
In this study, a novel epoxidized vegetable oil (EVO) from chia seed oil (CSO) has been obtained, with the aim to be employed in a great variety of green products related to the polymeric industry, as plasticizers and compatibilizers. Previous to the epoxidation process characterization, the fatty acid (FA) composition of CSO was analyzed using gas chromatography (GC). Epoxidation of CSO has been performed using peracetic acid formed in situ with hydrogen peroxide and acetic acid, applying sulfuric acid as catalyst. The effects of key parameters as temperature (60, 70, and 75 °C), the molar ratio of hydrogen peroxide:double bond (H2O2:DB) (0.75:1.0 and 1.50:1.0), and reaction time (0-8 h) were evaluated to obtain the highest relative oxirane oxygen yield (Yoo). The evaluation of the epoxidation process was carried out through iodine value (IV), oxirane oxygen content (Oo), epoxy equivalent weight (EEW), and selectivity (S). The main functional groups were identified by means of FTIR and 1H NMR spectroscopy. Physical properties were compared in the different assays. The study of different parameters showed that the best epoxidation conditions were carried out at 75 °C and H2O2:DB (1.50:1), obtaining an Oo value of 8.26% and an EEW of 193 (g·eq-1). These high values, even higher than those obtained for commercial epoxidized oils such as soybean or linseed oil, show the potential of the chemical modification of chia seed oil to be used in the development of biopolymers.