Nanosilica as dry bonding system component and as reinforcement in short nylon-6 fiber/natural rubber composite

Authors

  • Leny Mathew,

    1. Department of Polymer Science and Rubber Technology, Cochin University of Science and Technology, Kochi-682 022, India
    2. Department of Polymer Engineering, Mahatma Gandhi University College of Engineering, Thodupuzha-685 587, Kerala, India
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  • Sunil K. Narayanankutty

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Polymer Science and Rubber Technology, Cochin University of Science and Technology, Kochi-682 022, India
    • Department of Polymer Science and Rubber Technology, Cochin University of Science and Technology, Kochi-682 022, India
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Abstract

Nanoscale silica was synthesized by acid hydrolysis of sodium silicate using dilute hydrochloric acid under controlled conditions. The synthesized silica was characterized by SEM, BET adsorption, and XRD. The particle size of silica was calculated to be 13 nm from the XRD results and the surface area was found to be 295 m2/g by BET method. This synthesized nanosilica was used in place of conventional silica in HRH (hexamethylenetetramine, resorcinol and silica) bonding system for natural rubber/Nylon-6 short fiber composite. Nanosilica was also used as reinforcing filler in natural rubber/Nylon-6 short fiber hybrid composite. Mechanical, thermal, and dynamic mechanical properties of the composites were evaluated. The introduction of the nanosilica in hybrid composites improved the tensile strength, modulus, and tear strength through improved interaction with the matrix which is facilitated by the higher surface area. Abrasion loss and hardness were also better for the nanosilica composites. Resilience and compression set were adversely affected. The hybrid composites showed anisotropy in mechanical properties. Peak rate of thermal decomposition decreased and temperature of initiation of thermal degradation increased with silica content, indicating improved thermal stability of the hybrid composites. The storage modulus and loss modulus showed two-stage dependence on frequency at higher fiber loading. © 2009 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Appl Polym Sci, 2009

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