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Rheological, mechanical, optical, and transport properties of blown films of polyamide 6/residual monomer/montmorillonite nanocomposites

Authors

  • Cesar A. G. Beatrice,

    1. Universidade Federal de São Carlos, Departamento de Engenharia de Materiais—Rodovia Washington Luís, Km 235, C.P. 676, São Carlos, SP 13565-905, Brazil
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  • Marcia C. Branciforti,

    1. Universidade Federal de São Carlos, Departamento de Engenharia de Materiais—Rodovia Washington Luís, Km 235, C.P. 676, São Carlos, SP 13565-905, Brazil
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  • Rosa M. V. Alves,

    1. Instituto de Tecnologia de Alimentos, Centro de Pesquisa e Desenvolvimento de Embalagens—Avenida Brasil, 2880, C.P. 139, Campinas, SP 13070-178, Brazil
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  • Rosario E. S. Bretas

    Corresponding author
    1. Universidade Federal de São Carlos, Departamento de Engenharia de Materiais—Rodovia Washington Luís, Km 235, C.P. 676, São Carlos, SP 13565-905, Brazil
    • Universidade Federal de São Carlos, Departamento de Engenharia de Materiais—Rodovia Washington Luís, Km 235, C.P. 676, São Carlos, SP 13565-905, Brazil
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Abstract

Exfoliated nanocomposites of polyamide 6 (PA6) with residual monomer and an organically treated montmorillonite (3 and 5 wt %) were produced by twin-screw extrusion. The composites had their steady state, dynamic, and transient rheological properties measured by parallel-plates rheometry; their exfoliation level was characterized by wide angle X-rays diffraction (WAXD) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The characterization showed as follows: (i) the nanoclay's lamellas were well dispersed and distributed thru the PA6, (ii) the postpolymerization of the residual monomer produced more branched chains than linear ones in the pure PA6, (iii) the nanoclay's lamellas acted as entanglement points in the nanocomposites, and (iv) the molecular weight of the PA6 in the nanocomposites decreased. Blown films of the nanocomposites were produced by single screw extrusion; the die pressure during the film blowing of the nanocomposites strongly decreased. The tensile mechanical properties of the blown films were also measured. Along the machine direction (MD), the best mechanical properties were obtained with the 5 wt % nanocomposite, whereas along the transverse direction (TD), the 3 wt % nanocomposite had the best behavior. The glass transition temperature (Tg) of the blown films was measured by dynamic mechanical thermal analyses (DMTA). The 5 wt % nanocomposite had the highest Tg of all the films. The optical properties were measured by spectrophotometry; the nanoclay decreased the films' haze, but the level of transmittance was not affected. The water vapor and oxygen permeability rates of the nanocomposites films were found to be lower than in the pure PA6 blown film as a result of a tortuosity effect. © 2010 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Appl Polym Sci, 2010

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