Dramatic Enhancements in Toughness of Polyvinylidene Fluoride Nanocomposites via Nanoclay-Directed Crystal Structure and Morphology


  • We thank Cornell Center for Materials Research (CCMR), AFOSR, NASA and ONR, for financial support provided for this research and gratefully acknowledge the use of CCMR-sponsored XRD, and SEM/TEM facilities, as well as the time and assistance of M. Weathers (XRD) and J. Hunt (TEM/SEM). We thank R. Dieckmann for the use of his ATR-FTIR facilities, and H. Liu for her time and assistance in this regard. We also thank E. Reynaud, R. Krishnamoorti, R. A. Vaia, and A. J. Lovinger for their comments and suggestions.


original image

The first instance of a remarkable enhancement in toughness and stiffness of a poly(vinylidene fluoride) nanocomposite compared to the pristine polymer is reported (see Figure). The enhanced toughness is attributed to structural and morphological changes induced by the nanoparticles, as well as their increased mobility compared to micrometer-size fillers, which contributes to a new energy dissipation mechanism during deformation.