Properties of polypropylene/layered-silicate nanocomposites and melt-spun fibers

Authors

  • Seung Hwan Lee,

    1. Research Institute of Advanced Materials, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Seoul National University, Shillim-Dong, Gwanak-Gu, Seoul 151-744, Korea
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  • Jae Ryoun Youn

    Corresponding author
    1. Research Institute of Advanced Materials, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Seoul National University, Shillim-Dong, Gwanak-Gu, Seoul 151-744, Korea
    • Research Institute of Advanced Materials, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Seoul National University, Shillim-Dong, Gwanak-Gu, Seoul 151-744, Korea
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Abstract

Polypropylene (PP)/layered-silicate organoclay nanocomposites and their fibers were prepared by melt compounding and melt spinning, respectively, in the presence or absence of compatibilizer (PP-based maleic anhydride compatibilizer) to examine the effects of the organoclay dispersion and rheological behavior on the internal structure and tensile properties of the nanocomposite fibers. The compatibilized nanocomposites showed solidlike plateau behavior and strain hardening due to a three-dimensional network structure in the shear and uniaxial elongational flows. The tensile properties of the nanocomposite fibers were reduced compared with those of the pure PP fibers because some of the layered silicates were present as partially aggregated forms and the molecular weight of the compatibilizer was lower than that of the pure PP matrix. It was also found that the tenacity of the nanocomposite fiber increased and then decreased as the compatibilizer content increased because the compatibilizer affected the internal structure of the nanocomposite fibers. The positive effect of the compatibilizer was to generate a more effective exfoliated structure of organoclay in the polymer matrix. The negative effect was that the melt-spun nanocomposite fiber had a lower molecular weight than the pure PP fiber because the compatibilizer had a lower molecular weight. © 2008 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Appl Polym Sci, 2008

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