Effect of organic peroxides on the morphology and properties of EVA/Cloisite 15A nanocomposites



This article describes the effect of the presence of organic peroxides on the morphology and properties of ethylene vinyl acetate copolymer (EVA)/Cloisite 15A nanocomposites. The results show that the presence of dicumyl peroxide (DCP) or dibenzoyl peroxide (DBP) during the preparation of EVA/Cloisite 15A clay nanocomposites gives rise to intercalated, exfoliated, or mixed morphologies, which are not normally observed for samples prepared in the absence of organic peroxides. In the absence of clay, both DCP and DBP initiate de-acetylation and chain scission of EVA chains, but the influence of DBP is more pronounced. The presence of clay inhibits the initiation of EVA degradation by DCP free radicals, which can be observed in the higher tensile strength values for DCP treated samples, as well as in the de-acetylation step in the TGA curves. DBP has a more significant influence on the polymer degradation, and this gives rise to reduced thermal stability and mechanical properties. © 2008 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Appl Polym Sci, 2009