Distribution by Scientific Domains

Selected Abstracts

Effect of different types of peroxides on properties of vulcanized EPDM + PP blends

Witold Brostow
Mechanical and tribological behavior of several dynamic vulcanizate blends of polypropylene (PP) with ethylene-propylene-diene rubber (EPDM) was examined and compared with those of uncrosslinked blends. Vulcanization was performed using two types of organic peroxides combined with (meth)acrylate coagent. The effect of different types and concentrations of peroxides as crosslinking agents on the properties of the resulting materials were investigated. Dicumyl peroxide (DCP) provides higher reactivity and exhibits nearly the same crosslinking efficiency for both 60/40 and 50/50 blends; almost fully crosslinked samples are obtained if the compound contains 1.0 or 2.0 wt% DCP. These results correlate to the gel content and mechanical properties of our materials. Variation of PP + elastomer ratio does not have a significant influence on friction. From 60/40 group of composites, lower friction values were obtained for samples cured with 0.5 wt% benzoyl peroxide (BP) and 1.0 wt% DCP. The tribological properties of the samples with higher amount of DCP show rubbery rather than a toughened thermoplastic behavior. Wear of the composites decreases with the increasing concentration of the curing agent. Compared to BP, the samples cured with DCP display lower wear. POLYM. COMPOS., 31:1678,1691, 2010. © 2010 Society of Plastics Engineers. [source]

Use of Turkish huntite/hydromagnesite mineral in plastic materials as a flame retardant

Hüsnügül Y, lmaz Atay
In this study, the flame retardancy properties of huntite/hydromagnesite mineral in plastic compounds were investigated for potential electrical applications. Before the production of composite materials, huntite/hydromagnesite minerals were ground to particle sizes of 10, 1, and 0.1 ,m. Phase and microstructural analysis of huntite/hydromagnesite mineral powders were undertaken using XRD and SEM-EDS preceding the fabrication of the composite materials. The ground minerals with different particle size and content levels were subsequently added to ethylene vinyl acetate copolymer to produce composite materials. After fabrication of huntite/hydromagnesite reinforced plastic composite samples, they were characterized using DTA-TG, FTIR, and SEM-EDS. Flame retardancy tests were undertaken as a main objective of this research. The size distribution and the mineral content effects are measured regarding the flame retardancy of the polymer composites It was concluded that the flame retardant properties of plastic composites were improved as the mineral content increased and the size was reduced. POLYM. COMPOS., 31:1692,1700, 2010. © 2010 Society of Plastics Engineers. [source]

Kinetics of the phase selective localization of silica in rubber blends

Hai Hong Le
The Fourier transformed infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy on the rubber-filler gel has been used as a tool for the quantitative characterization of the phase selective silica localization in styrene butadiene rubber (SBR)/natural rubber (NR) blends. The so-called rubber-layer L was introduced to describe the selective wetting behavior of the rubber phases to the filler. SBR/NR blends filled with silica were the focus of the experimental investigation. NR shows a higher wetting rate than SBR. Silane addition does not affect the wetting of NR but slowdowns the wetting of SBR. With increasing chamber temperature the value of the rubber-layer L of all mixtures increases owing to the different thermal activated rubber-filler bonding processes. Using the wetting concept the kinetics of silica localization in the phases of heterogeneous rubber blends was characterized. Because of the higher wetting rate of the NR component, in the first stage of mixing of NR/SBR blends more silica is found in the NR phase than in the SBR phase. In the next stage, silica is transferred from the NR phase to the SBR phase until the loosely bonded components of NR rubber-layer are fully replaced by SBR molecules. POLYM. COMPOS., 31:1701,1711, 2010. © 2010 Society of Plastics Engineers. [source]

Fast liquid composite molding simulation of unsaturated flow in dual-scale fiber mats using the imbibition characteristics of a fabric-based unit cell

Hua Tan
The use of the dual-scale fiber mats in liquid composite molding (LCM) process for making composites parts gives rise to the unsaturated flow during the mold-filling process. The usual approaches for modeling such flows involve using a sink term in the mass balance equation along with the Darcy's law. Sink functions involving complex microflows inside tows with realistic tow geometries have not been attempted in the past because of the problem of high computational costs arising from the coupling of the macroscopic gap flows with the microscopic tow flows. In this study, a new "lumped" sink function is proposed for the isothermal flow simulation, which is a function of the gap pressure, capillary pressure, and tow saturation, and which is estimated without solving for the microscopic tow simulations at each node of the FE mesh in the finite element/control volume algorithm. The sink function is calibrated with the help of the tow microflow simulation in a stand-alone unit cell of the dual-scale fiber mat. This new approach, which does not use any fitting parameters, achieved a good validation against a previous published result on the 1D unsaturated flow in a biaxial stitched mat,satisfactory comparisons of the inlet-pressure history as well as the saturation distributions were achieved. Finally, the unsaturated flow is studied in a car hood-type LCM mold geometry using the code PORE-FLOW© based on the proposed algorithm. POLYM. COMPOS., 31:1790,1807, 2010. © 2010 Society of Plastics Engineers. [source]

An investigation on the correlation between rheology and morphology of nanocomposite foams based on low-density polyethylene and ethylene vinyl acetate blends

M. Riahinezhad
This article presents the correlation between rheology and morphology of nanocomposite foams of low-density polyethylene (LDPE), ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA), and their blends. LDPE/EVA nanocomposites were prepared via melt mixing and then foamed using batch foaming method. To assess the rheological behavior of polymer melts, frequency sweep and creep recovery tests were done. Morphology of the samples was also studied by scanning electron microscopy and X-ray diffraction. The results showed that with increase in clay content, storage modulus, complex and zero shear viscosities will be increased, which affect the foam morphology. In addition, elasticity plays an important role in foaming process, in a way that samples with more elasticity percentage have the highest cell density and the lowest cell size. POLYM. COMPOS., 31:1808,1816, 2010. © 2010 Society of Plastics Engineers. [source]

Nonisothermal melt crystallization kinetics of poly(ethylene terephthalate)/Barite nanocomposites

Chunhua Ge
Poly(ethylene terephthalate) (PET)/Barite nanocomposites were prepared by direct melt compounding. The nonisothermal melt crystallization kinetics of pure PET and PET/Barite nanocomposites, containing unmodified Barite and surface-modified Barite (SABarite), was investigated by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) under different cooling rates. With the addition of barite nanoparticles, the crystallization peak became wider and shifted to higher temperature and the crystallization rate increased. Several analysis methods were used to describe the nonisothermal crystallization behavior of pure PET and its nanocomposites. The Jeziorny modification of the Avrami analysis was only valid for describing the early stage of crystallization but was not able to describe the later stage of PET crystallization. Also, the Ozawa method failed to describe the nonisothermal crystallization behavior of PET. A combined Avrami and Ozawa equation, developed by Liu, was used to more accurately model the nonisothermal crystallization kinetics of PET. The crystallization activation energies calculated by Kissinger, Takhor, and Augis-Bennett models were comparable. The results reveal that the different interfacial interactions between matrix and nanoparticles are responsible for the disparate effect on the crystallization ability of PET. POLYM. COMPOS., 31:1504,1514, 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]

High-performance nanocomposites based on arcylonitrile-butadiene rubber with fillers of different particle size: Mechanical and morphological studies

P.C. Thomas
Acrylonitrile-butadiene rubber (NBR) nanocomposites with layered silicate (LS), calcium phosphate (CP), and titanium dioxide (TO) of different particle size were prepared in an open two-roll mixing mill at different filler loading in presence of sulphur as vulcanizing agent. The layered silicate (LS) filled system showed outstanding enhancement in mechanical properties in comparison with nanocalcium phosphate (CP) and titanium dioxide (TO). The variations in properties can be attributed to the extent of intercalation/exfoliation, which was highly influenced by the filler size. The layered silicate filled system at 20 phr showed nearly 349% increase in tensile strength compared to pure NBR whereas an increase of 110% and 84% were shown by CP and TO filled systems respectively. The modulus enhancements were in the order of 200%, 63% and 22%, respectively compared to the unfilled system. The increase in tear resistance was in the order of 230%, 115%, and 41% respectively for the filled systems in comparison with unfilled NBR. The significant enhancements in mechanical properties were supported by the morphological analysis. POLYM. COMPOS., 31:1515,1524, 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]

Dependence of interfacial strength on the anisotropic fiber properties of jute reinforced composites

J.L. Thomason
The upsurge in research on natural fiber composites over the past decade has not yet delivered any major progress in large scale replacement of glass fiber in volume engineering applications. This article presents data on injection-molded jute reinforced polypropylene and gives a balanced comparison with equivalent glass reinforced materials. The poor performance of natural fibers as reinforcements is discussed and both chemical modification of the matrix and mercerization and silane treatment of the fibers are shown to have little significant effect on their level of reinforcement of polypropylene in comparison to glass fibers. A hypothesis is proposed to explain the poor performance of natural fibers relating their low level of interfacial strength to the anisotropic internal fiber structure. POLYM. COMPOS., 31:1525,1534, 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]

Ultrasonochemical-assisted fabrication and evaporation- induced self-assembly (EISA) of POSS-SiO2@Ag core/ABA triblock copolymer nanocomposite film

Murugan Veerapandian
Poly(ethylene glycol)-octafunctionalized polyhedral oligomeric silsesquioxane (POSS) (Mn = 5576.6 g/mol) alloying agent stabilized amphiphilic silica@silver metalloid nanocomposite blended with a triblock copolymer poly(p -dioxanone- co -caprolactone)- block -poly(ethylene oxide)- block -poly(p -dioxanone- co -caprolactone) (POSS-SiO2@Ag/PPDO- co -PCL- b -PEG- b -PPDO- co -PCL) has been synthesized in both water and in organic medium utilizing ultrasonochemical reaction. The POSS stabilized pre-made metalloid was successfully dispersed in amphiphilic PPDO- co -PCL- b -PEG- b -PPDO- co -PCL (ABA) triblock copolymer matrix of molecular weight 45.9 × 104 g/mol. The mechanism of synthesis of high concentration of SiO2@Ag nanocomposite from TEOS/AgNO3 (in the presence of NH4OH as catalyst/NaBH4 as reductant) nonmetal/metal precursors and the successful EISA of POSS-SiO2@Ag/ABA nanocomposite into films has been discussed. The successful synthesis of metalloid nanocomposite was morphologically accessed by field emission-scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy and atomic force microscopy. Surface plasmon resonance was ensured from UV,visible spectral analysis. Identity and the crystallinity of as prepared nanocomposite were studied by X-ray diffractometer. Structural and luminescence properties of the nanocomposite were examined by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy and photoluminescence. Thermogravimetric analysis was carried out to study the thermal stability of the resulting hybrid nanocomposite. The resultant inorganic,organic nanocomposite can be easily suspended in water and would be useful in variety of applications. POLYM. COMPOS., 31:1620,1627, 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]

Synthesis of new superhydrophobic nanosilica and investigation of their performance in reinforcement of polysiloxane

XianLi Fang
We reported a new facile method to synthesize superhydrophobic nanosilica using glycidoxypropyltrimethoxysilane and dodecylamine as treatment agents. Also, we systemically investigate their performance in reinforcement of poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS) rubber. Fourier transform infrared spectrum, contact angle (CA) and thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) measurements were used to characterize the modified nanosilica. Results show that the inherent hydrophilicity of parent nanosilica surface can be greatly altered through this modification method. The CA of as-prepared superhydrophobic nanosilica can reach 160.2°. The properties of as-prepared modified nanosilica-filled PDMS composites were systemically investigated by dynamic rheological test, scanning electron microscopy, TGA, dynamic mechanical analysis. These as-prepared superhydrophobic nanosilica exhibit uniform dispersion in the PDMS matrix, and their composites also show good mechanical properties and distinct advantage on thermal stability compared with those of the pure silica-filled PDMS composites. Also described is the probable mechanism for the reinforcement of as-prepared superhydrophobic nanosilica-filled PDMS. POLYM. COMPOS., 31:1628,1636, 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]

Particle size effect on the film-forming process of PS/PBA composite latexes

aziye U
In this work, the effect of hard particle size and blend ratio on the film formation behavior of hard polystyrene (PS) and soft poly(n -butyl acrylate) (PBA) latex blends was studied by means of steady-state fluorescence and UV,visible techniques in conjunction with atomic force microscopy. Three different sets of latexes were synthesized: PBA latex (diameter 97 nm), pyrene (P)-labeled large PS (LgPS; diameter 900 nm), and small PS (SmPS; diameter 320 nm). Two different series of latex blends (LgPS/PBA and SmPS/PBA) were prepared with varying blend composition at room temperature separately. Films were then annealed at elevated temperatures above glass transition (Tg) temperature of PS. Fluorescence intensity (IP) from P and photon transmission intensity (Itr) were measured after each annealing step to monitor the stages of film formation. The results showed that a significant change occurred in IP and Itr at a certain critical weight fraction (Rc) of PBA. Below Rc, two distinct film formation stages, which are named as void closure and interdiffusion, were seen. However, at PBA concentrations nearer to or above Rc, no film formation can be achieved. Comparing to the LgPS/PBA, the sintering process of SmPS/PBA particles occurred at much lower temperatures. Film formation stages for R < Rc were modeled, and related activation energies were calculated. Void closure (,H) and interdiffusion (,E) activation energies for SmPS/PBA were also found smaller in comparing with LgPS/PBA series. However, ,H and ,E values were not changed much with the blend composition for both series. POLYM. COMPOS., 31:1637,1652, 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]

The research on the mechanical and tribological properties of carbon fiber and carbon nanotube-filled PEEK composite

Jian Li
The main objective of this article is to develop high wear resistance carbon fiber reinforced polyether ether ketone composite with addition of multiwall carbon nanotube (MWCNT). These compounds were well mixed in a Haake batch mixer, and compounded polymers were fabricated into sheets of known thickness by compression molding. Samples were tested for wear resistance with respect to different concentration of fillers. The wear resistance properties of these samples depend on filler aspect ratio. Wear resistance of composite with 20 wt% of CF increases when MWCNT was introduced. The worn surface features have been examined using scanning electron microscope. Photomicrographs of the worn surfaces revealed higher wear resistance with the addition of carbon nanotube. Also, better interfacial adhesion between carbon and vinyl ester in carbon-reinforced vinyl ester composite was observed. POLYM. COMPOS., 31:1315,1320, 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]

The influence of fiber formation conditions on the structure and properties of nanocomposite alginate fibers containing tricalcium phosphate or montmorillonite

Maciej Bogu
The authors devised conditions for the formation of nanocomposite calcium alginate fibers containing tricalcium phosphate (TCP) or montmorillonite (MMT). The rheological, sorptive, and strength properties of these fibers, as well as their porous and supramolecular structures were subjected to analysis. It has been concluded that the presence of nanoadditives in the material of alginate fibers decreases their susceptibility to distortion in the drawing stage. The obtained fibers are characterized by an even distribution of the nanoadditive on the fiber surface. POLYM. COMPOS., 31:1321,1331, 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]

Nanoclay-reinforced syntactic foams: Flexure and thermal behavior

Mrinal C. Saha
Syntactic foams containing 60 vol% of hollow glass microballoons in epoxy matrix are modified with untreated nanoclays using combined mechanical and ultrasonication methods. Effects of nanoclays on flexure and thermal behavior of syntactic foams are investigated by adding different amount of nanoclays in the range of 1,3% by weight. Microscopic examinations and physical property characterization are performed to determine the interactions among constituent materials and the void formation during fabrication. It is found that the syntactic foams with 2 wt% nanoclays show the highest improvement in flexural properties (,42% strength and ,18% modulus) and dynamic mechanical properties (,30% storage modulus and ,28% loss modulus) properties. Thermal decomposition temperature is found to be unaffected by the addition of nanoclays, whereas a continuous reduction in the coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE) is observed. An examination of failure surface indicates that the failure is initiated on the tension side of the flexure sample due to fracturing of microballoons. POLYM. COMPOS., 31:1332,1342, 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]

Extrusion of polyethylene/polypropylene blends with microfibrillar-phase morphology

Martina Polaskova
Extrusion of immiscible polymers under special conditions can lead to creation of microfibrillar-phase morphology, ensuring significant increase of mechanical properties of polymer profiles. Polyethylene/polypropylene blend extrudates with microfibrillar-phase morphology (polypropylene microfibrils reinforcing polyethylene matrix phase) were prepared through continuous extrusion with semihyperbolic-converging die enabling elongation and orientation of microfibrils in flow direction. Structure of extruded profiles was examined using electron microscopy and wide-angle X-ray scattering. Tensile tests proved that extrudates with microfibrillar-phase morphology show significantly higher mechanical properties than the conventional extrudates. The presented concept offers possibility of replacing the existing expensive multi-component medical devices with fully polymeric tools. POLYM. COMPOS., 31:1427,1433, 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]

Closed form solution of resin flow from multiple line gates in liquid composite molding

B. Markicevic
The resin flow from multiple line injection into a fibrous porous medium is investigated analytically and experimentally. The flow in a rectangular porous medium is created by placing two inlets: a channel along one of the domain edges, and a manifold placed in the center of the domain perpendicular to the first inlet on the top surface of the porous medium. It is demonstrated that two distinct sub-regions of the porous medium exist: inner sub-region which is filled by the liquid from the manifold, and outer sub-region that is filled by fluid from the channel. In the experiments, the following geometric parameters are varied: channel cross-sectional area, mold width, and thickness to investigate how the processing parameters influence which part of the overall domain is filled by fluid from a specific inlet. Neither fluid nor porous medium are varied throughout the study. For nonconstrained flow, an analytical model is formulated to predict the interface between the two sub-regions which is called the inner sub-region thickness. Both, implicit and explicit solutions are found, where the explicit solution is represented as inverse Lambert function. The solution relies on one physical constant which is a function of the pressure gradients and the directional permeabilities of the fibrous preform. Comparisons between experimental and analytical results reveal an excellent agreement for various sets of geometric parameters. This research should prove useful in understanding the flow in composites manufacturing when resin is injected simultaneously from multiple gates and channels. POLYM. COMPOS., 31:1434,1441, 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]

Kinetics and thermodynamics of isothermal curing reaction of epoxy-4, 4,-diaminoazobenzene reinforced with nanosilica and nanoclay particles

M. Barghamadi
The kinetics of the cure reaction for a system of bisphenol-A epoxy resin (DGEBA), with 4, 4,-diaminoazobenzene (DAAB), reinforced with nanosilica (NS), and nanoclay (NC) by means of isothermal technique of differential scanning calorimetry were studied. The Kamal autocatalytic-like kinetic model was used to estimate the reaction orders (m, n), rate constants (k1, k2), and also active energies (Ea) and pre-exponential factors (A) of the curing reaction. However, the existence of NS and NC with hydroxyl groups in the structure improves the cure reaction and influence the rate of reaction and therefore kinetics parameters. The Ea of cure reaction of DGEBA/DAAB system showed a decrease when nanoparticles were present and therefore the rate of the reaction was increased. Using the rate constants from the kinetic analysis and transition state theory, thermodynamic parameters such as enthalpy (,H#), entropy (,S#), and Gibbs free energy (,G#) changes were also calculated. The thermodynamic functions were shown to be very sensitive parameters for evaluation of the cure reaction. POLYM. COMPOS., 31:1442,1448, 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]

Mechanical behavior of recycled reinforced polyamide railway fasteners

José Antonio Casado
Modern railway tracks use short-fiber glass reinforced polyamide to inject insulating and mechanically resistant fasteners to connect the rails to the sleepers. Some of this material is later withdrawn, due either to defective production or to breakage in service. The recovery of the material for its later re-use would lead to a great saving, from both an environmental and an economic viewpoint. Mechanical recycling is a simple, economic process that only requires the crushing of the material and its subsequent molding, without the need for any chemical treatments. However, it has some drawbacks; as with any kind of recycling, there is a certain loss of material quality with some degradation of its properties. In this work, the physical and mechanical results for fasteners injected with recycled material are compared to others injected with pure material. The results show that the use of recycled fasteners is limited in-service by working conditions that increase the thermoplastic material temperature above its critical glass transition temperature, Tg. POLYM. COMPOS., 31:1142,1149, 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]

A nonlinear theoretical model for prediction of mechanical behavior of particulate composites and experimental verification of the model predictions

A. Ramazani S.A.
A model for prediction the stress-strain behavior of particulate composite over wide ranges of filler concentration and composite deformation has been developed through combination of Anderson's and Yilmizer's model. The constitutive equations are extracted from first law of thermodynamic and nonlinear dilatational effects which are produced by filler-matrix debonding process. In addition to nonlinear behavior that has been resulted by filler-matrix debonding and was presented by Yilmizer, the formation and growing of void or cavitations has been also introduced in this model, whereas Anderson's model, most important reason for deviation of linear behavior is filler-matrix debonding and has been indicated by change of modulus. Model predictions for effects of the filler concentration and its particle size and particle size distribution for some matrix-filler systems are compared with related experimental data from literature and some investigated systems in this work. An excellent agreement even better than prediction of Anderson's model between experimental data and model predictions can be observed in most cases especially for some concentrated systems. POLYM. COMPOS., 31:1150,1155, 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]

Effect of clay modification on the morphological, mechanical, and thermal properties of polyamide 6/polypropylene/montmorillonite nanocomposites

Polyamide 6/polypropylene (PA6/PP = 70/30 parts) blends containing 4 phr (parts per hundred resin) of organophilic montmorillonite (OMMT) were prepared by melt compounding. The sodium montmorillonite (Na-MMT) was modified using three different types of alkyl ammonium salts, namely dodecylamine, 12-aminolauric acid, and stearylamine. The effect of clay modification on the morphological and mechanical properties of PA6/PP nanocomposites was investigated using x-ray diffraction (XRD), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), tensile, flexural, and impact tests. The thermal properties of PA6/PP nanocomposites were characterized using thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA), and heat distortion temperature (HDT). XRD and TEM results indicated the formation of exfoliated structure for the PA6/PP nanocomposites prepared using stearylamine modified montmorillonite. On the other hand, a mixture of intercalated and exfoliated structures was found for the PA6/PP nanocomposites prepared using 12-aminolauric acid and dodecylamine modified montmorillonite. Incorporation of OMMT increased the stiffness but decreased the ductility and toughness of PA6/PP blend. The PA6/PP nanocomposite containing stearylamine modified montmorillonite showed the highest tensile, flexural, and thermal properties among all nanocomposites. This could be attributed to better exfoliated structure in the PA6/PP nanocomposite containing stearylamine modified montmorillonite. The storage modulus and HDT of PA6/PP blend were increased significantly with the incorporation of both Na-MMT and OMMT. The highest value in both storage modulus and HDT was found in the PA6/PP nanocomposite containing stearylamine modified montmorillonite due to its better exfoliated structure. POLYM. COMPOS., 31:1156,1167, 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]

Influence of interfacial adhesion on the structural and mechanical behavior of PP-banana/glass hybrid composites

Sanjay K. Nayak
Hybrid composites of polypropylene (PP), reinforced with short banana and glass fibers were fabricated using Haake torque rheocord followed by compression molding with and without the presence maleic anhydride grafted polypropylene (MAPP) as a coupling agent. Incorporation of both fibers into PP matrix resulted in increase of tensile strength, flexural strength, and impact strength upto 30 wt% with an optimum strength observed at 2 wt% MAPP treated 15 wt% banana and 15 wt% glass fiber. The rate of water absorption for the hybrid composites was decreased due to the presence of glass fiber and coupling agent. The effect of fiber loading in presence of coupling agent on the dynamic mechanical properties has been analyzed to investigate the interfacial properties. An increase in storage modulus (E,) of the treated-composite indicates higher stiffness. The loss tangent (tan ,) spectra confirms a strong influence of fiber loading and coupling agent concentration on the , and , relaxation process of PP. The nature of fiber matrix adhesion was examined through scanning electron microscopy (SEM) of the tensile fractured specimen. Thermal measurements were carried out through differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and the thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), indicated an increase in the crystallization temperature and thermal stability of PP with the incorporation of MAPP-treated banana and glass fiber. POLYM. COMPOS., 31:1247,1257, 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]

Polystyrene/CaCO3 composites with different CaCO3 radius and different nano-CaCO3 content,structure and properties

Linlin Zha
The Archimedes' principle and physical theory are attempted to analysis the densification and structure of the polystyrene (PS) composites by melt compounding with CaCO3 having different particle size. The difference between the measured specific volume (,) andthe theoretically calculated specific volume (,mix), ,, = ,,,mix, can reflect the densification of the composites. It is clearly demonstrated that the PS composites become more condensed with the reduction of the CaCO3 particle size. Especially, when the content for nano-CaCO3 achieves 2 wt%, the ,, value of the composites reaches the least, which shows the best densification. Meanwhile, the glass transition temperature (Tg) reaches the maximum value of about 100°C by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and thermal mechanical analysis (TMA), which indirectly reveals the composites microstructure more condensed. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) reveal that 2 wt% nano-CaCO3 uniformly disperses in PS composites. The CaCO3 selected in this experiment has certain toughening effect on PS. The impact and tensile strength increase with addition of nano-CaCO3, but the elongation at break decreases. When nano-CaCO3 content achieved 2 wt%, the impact and tensile strength present the maximum value of 1.63 KJ/m2 and 44.5 MPa, which is higher than the pure PS and the composites filled with the same content of micro-CaCO3. POLYM. COMPOS., 31:1258,1264, 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]

Composites formed by glass fibers and PS-modified epoxy matrix.

Influence of the glass fibers surface on the morphologies, mechanical properties of the interphases generated
In this work, the influence of the nature of the reinforcement surface on the interfacial morphologies developed in E-glass fibers/polystyrene (PS)-modified epoxy composites has been studied. Different surface modifications of the fibers were considered. In a complementary way, morphological analysis and nanoindentation measurements were carried out using atomic force microscopy to subsequently correlate the interfacial structure with the morphologies observed. In every composite, reaction-induced phase separation happened with a morphology composed of PS-rich domains immersed in an epoxy-rich phase. However, depending on the surface modification of the glass fibers, different distributions of PS-rich domains at the interfaces were obtained. The results were interpreted in terms of a gradual phase separation process because of stoichiometric gradients from the glass fibers surface to the matrix bulk caused by specific segregation of one of the components of the reactive epoxy mixture to the fibers occurs. It was concluded that specific and controlled reinforcement modification allows obtaining tailored interfaces formed by a polymer blend and a reinforcement in which the morphology can be previously selected. POLYM. COMPOS., 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]

Dynamic mechanical analysis of pineapple leaf/glass hybrid fiber reinforced polyester composites

L. Uma Devi
The dynamic mechanical properties of randomly oriented intimately mixed hybrid composites based on pineapple leaf fibers (PALF) and glass fibers (GF) in unsaturated polyester (PER) matrix were investigated. The PALFs have high-specific strength and improve the mechanical properties of the PER matrix. In this study, the volume ratio of the two fibers was varied by incorporating small amounts of GF such as PALF/GF, 90/10, 80/20, 70/30, and 50/50, keeping the total fiber loading constant at 40 wt%. The dynamic modulus of the compositeswas found to increase on GF addition. The intimately mixed (IM) hybrid composites with PALF/GF, 80/20 (0.2 Vf GF) showed highest E, values and least damping. Interestingly, the impact strength of the composites was minimum at this volume ratio. The composites with 0.46 Vf GF or PALF/GF (50/50) showed maximum damping behavior and highest impact strength. The results were compared with hybrid composites of different layering patterns such as GPG (GF skin and PALF core) and PGP (PALF skin and GF core). IM and GPG hybrid composites are found more effective than PGP. The activation energy values for the relaxation processes in different composites were calculated. The overall results showed that hybridization with GF enhanced the performance properties. POLYM. COMPOS., 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]

Effects of malonic acid treatment on crystal structure, melting behavior, morphology, and mechanical properties of isotactic poly(propylene)/wollastonite composites

Lin Li
Wollastonite is treated with a new surface modifier (malonic acid). The influence of malonic acid treatment on the crystallization and mechanical properties of polypropylene (PP)/wollastonite composites has been studied. The results of differential scanning calorimetry, wide angle X-ray diffractometry, and polarized light microscopy prove that malonic acid-treated wollastonite increases the relative content of ,-crystal form of PP. The scanning electron microscopy shows that malonic acid-treated wollastonite has better compatibility with PP matrix than the untreated wollastonite. Higher ,-phase contents, smaller spherulite sizes, and better compatibility with PP matrix of the composites containing malonic acid-treated wollastonite result in improved impact strength and tensile strength, but lower flexural modulus. The results of Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy show that malonic acid reacts with the Ca2+ of wollastonite to form the calcium malonate, which acts as an effective ,-nucleating agent. POLYM. COMPOS., 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]

Comparison between laser-induced nucleation of ZnS and CdS nanocrystals directly into polymer matrices

Athanassia Athanassiou
The nucleation of two kinds of crystalline nanoparticles, zinc sulfide (ZnS), and cadmium sulfide (CdS), is achieved directly into specific sites of polymer matrices after their irradiation with UV laser pulses. The starting samples consist of polymers doped with precursors of Zn or Cd thiolate that are proved to decompose after the absorption of UV light, resulting into the nanoparticles formation. The growth of the crystalline nanostructures is followed throughout the irradiation of the samples with successive incident pulses, by different methods, such as transmission electron microscopy, atomic force microscopy, confocal microscopy, and X-ray diffraction. Special attention is paid to the difference of the formation pathways of the two kinds of nanoparticles studied, because the Cd thiolate precursor exhibits much higher absorption efficiency than the Zn thiolate one, at the applied UV wavelength. Indeed, CdS nanoparticles become evident after the very first incident UV pulses, whereas the formation of ZnS nanocrystals requires rather prolonged irradiation, always through a macroscopically nondestructive procedure for the polymer matrix. POLYM. COMPOS., 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]

Fabrication and electrical properties of CNT/PP conductive composites with low percolation threshold by solid state alloying

D.L. Gao
The carbon nanotube/polypropylene conductive composites with a percolation threshold as low as 0.25 wt% were fabricated by solid state alloying. This solid state alloying method uses the super-high speed mechanical shearing (at 10,000 rpm) to process the entangled catalytically grown carbon nanotubes (CNTs) and the polymer matrix in solid state. The electrical properties of the nanocomposites and the structure and distribution of CNTs were investigated. The results indicated that via the shear-intensive process, CNTs were truncated and dispersed effectively, and their length could be controlled properly to fully exert the advantage of high aspect ratios (length-to-diameter ratios). At the same time, a linear structure conductive network which may considerably lower the percolation threshold was also formed by this method. Moreover, the CNTs could be further dispersed under the action of thermo energy provided by increasing the processing temperature. The super-high speed solid state alloying method is a favorable approach for the production of low percolation threshold conductive composites of CNTs filled high viscosity resins. POLYM. COMPOS., 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]

Contribution of wood fiber hygroexpansion to moisture induced thickness swelling of composite plates

Karin M. Almgren
One of the main drawbacks of wood fiber-based composite materials is their propensity to swell due to moisture uptake. Because the wood fibers are usually the main contributor to hygroexpansion, it is of interest to quantify the hygroexpansion coefficient of wood fibers, to compare and rank different types of fibers. This investigation outlines an inverse method to estimate the transverse hygroexpansion coefficient of wood fibers based on measurements of moisture induced thickness swelling of composite plates. The model is based on composite micromechanics and laminate theory. Thickness swelling has been measured on polylactide matrix composites with either bleached reference fibers or crosslinked fibers. The crosslinking modification reduced the transverse hygroexpansion of the composites and the transverse coefficient of hygroexpansion of the fibers was reduced from 0.28 strain per relative humidity for reference fibers to 0.12 for cross-linked fibers. POLYM. COMPOS., 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]

Effect of processing technique on the dispersion of carbon nanotubes within polypropylene carbon nanotube-composites and its effect on their mechanical properties

Amal M.K. Esawi
Carbon nanotube-reinforced polymer composites are being investigated as promising new materials having enhanced physical and mechanical properties. With regards to mechanical behavior, the enhancements reported thus far by researchers are lower than the theoretical predictions. One of the key requirements to attaining enhanced behavior is a uniform dispersion of the nanotubes within the polymer matrix. Although solvent mixing has been used extensively, there are concerns that any remaining solvent within the composite may degrade its mechanical properties. In this work, a comparison is carried out between solvent and "solvent-free" dry mixing for dispersing multiwall carbon nanotubes in polypropylene before further melt mixing by extrusion. Various weight fractions of carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are added to the polymer and their effect on the mechanical properties of the resulting composites is investigated. Enhancements in yield strength, hardness, and Young's modulus when compared with the neat polymer, processed under similar conditions, are observed. Differences in mechanical properties and strain as a function of the processing technique (solvent or dry) are also clearly noted. In addition, different trends of enhancement of mechanical properties for the solvent and dry-mixed extrudates are observed. Dry mixing produces composites with the highest yield strength, hardness, and modulus at 0.5 wt% CNT, whereas solvent mixing produces the highest mechanical properties at CNT contents of 1 wt%. It is believed that this difference is primarily dependent on the dispersion of CNTs within the polymer matrix which is influenced by the processing technique. Field emission scanning electron microscopy analysis shows the presence of clusters in large wt% CNT samples produced by dry mixing. Samples produced by solvent mixing are found to contain homogeneously distributed CNTs at all CNT wt fractions. CNT pull-out is observed and may explain the limited enhancement in mechanical properties. POLYM. COMPOS., 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]

Kaolin,epoxy-based nanocomposites: A complementary study of the epoxy curing by FTIR and fluorescence

P.D. Castrillo
This work is focused on the study of the effect exerted by the presence of kaolin on the cure reaction of an epoxy-based polymer, discussing the influence of different kaolin pretreatments. During the last few years, the interest on polymer matrix nanocomposite materials has sharply increased because generally they show improved properties when compared with those of the neat polymer (without filler). Among this sort of materials, polymer clay nanocomposites have been widely studied. However, there are not many works about kaolin-based composites. Although several techniques have been used to monitor the cure process in epoxy-based composites such as Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) or differential scanning calorimetry, only the use of the fluorescent response from a fluorophore seems to be adequate to monitor the reaction exactly at the interfaces at a molecular scale. In this work, FTIR and fluorimetry were used to monitor the cure reaction of the different composite systems at different curing temperatures. The analysis of FTIR experiments revealed that the presence of the reinforcement clay affects the extent of the cure reaction depending on the nature of its surface. On the other hand, the use of a fluorescent molecule chemically bonded to the reinforcement allows studying the curing exactly at the interface. Finally, with the collected data, a kinetic analysis was done and the results obtained were compared in terms of the technique used and the information source (interface or bulk). At the interface, the activation energy for the epoxy reaction is lower than that carried out in the bulk indicating that the reaction at the interface proceeds via a particular mechanism for which the reaction is favored. It seems that a higher amount of hydroxyl groups is capable of catalyzing the cure reaction. POLYM. COMPOS., 2010. © 2009 Society of Plastics Engineers [source]