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Preparation and characterization of low density polyethylene/ethylene methyl acrylate glycidyl methacrylate/organoclay nanocomposites

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Abstract

The effects of organoclay type, compatibilizer, and the addition order of components during melt-blending process on the morphology and thermal, mechanical, and flow properties of ternary nanocomposites based on low-density polyethylene (LDPE) were investigated. As a compatibilizer, ethylene/methyl acrylate/glycidyl methacrylate (E-MA-GMA), as organoclays Cloisites® 15A, 25A, and 30B were used. All samples were prepared by a corotating twin screw extruder, followed by injection molding. The highest increase of the basal spacing for ternary nanocomposites was obtained in LDPE/E-MA-GMA/Cloisite® 30B nanocomposites with interlayer spacing of 59.2 Å. Organoclay and compatibilizer addition did not influence the melting/crystallization behavior of the compositions, and both compatibilizer and organoclays had no significant nucleation activity in LDPE. Among the ternary nanocomposites, the maximum increase in tensile strength and tensile modulus values was observed for nanocomposites containing organoclay Cloisite® 15A. The improvement with respect to neat LDPE was 43% for tensile strength and 44% for tensile modulus. According to the mechanical analysis, the best sequence of component addition was the one in which LDPE, organoclay, and compatibilizer were simultaneously fed to the extruder in the first run, and the product of the first run was extruded once more. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Appl Polym Sci, 2011

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