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Tribological properties of micro- and nanoparticles-filled poly(etherimide) composites



It has been found that nano- or microsized inorganic particles in general enhance the tribological properties of polymer materials. In the present study, 5 vol % nano-TiO2 or micro-CaSiO3 was introduced into a polyetherimide (PEI) matrix composite, which was filled additionally with short carbon fibers (SCF) and graphite flakes. The influence of these inorganic particles on the sliding behavior was investigated with a pin-on-disc testing rig at room temperature and 150°C. Experimental results showed that both particles could reduce the wear rate and the frictional coefficient (μ) of the PEI composites under the applied testing conditions. At room temperature, the microparticles-filled composites exhibited a lower wear rate and μ, while the nano-TiO2-filled composites possessed the lowest wear rate and μ at elevated temperature. Enhancement in tribological properties with the addition of the nano-particles was attributed to the formation of transfer layers on both sliding surfaces together with the reinforcing effect. © 2006 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Appl Polym Sci 101: 1678–1686, 2006