• polyimide foam;
  • ultralight;
  • high temperature resistance;
  • electromagnetic interference shielding


This article focused on the preparation and characterization of ultralight and high-temperature resistant polyimide foam (PIF) for electromagnetic interference shielding. PIF was first prepared based on a one-pot process by the primary reactions of derivatives of pyromellitic dianhydride and polyaryl polymethylene isocyanate. Then, PIFs with silver (0) coating were then prepared by spraying silver (0) on the surfaces of PIF through physical spraying method. The surface density of silver coating was 0.18 kg/m2, and the densities of silver-coated PIFs were less than 23 kg/m3. The scanning electron microscopy coupled with an energy-dispersive X-ray spectrometer (EDX) measurement were carried out to investigate the morphological and chemical properties of uncoated and coated PIFs. For coated PIFs, the EDX spectrums indicated increasing higher silver proportions from interior to exterior surface, together with increasing higher carbon proportions from exterior surface to interior. Thermogravimetry/Fourier transform infrared instrument that combined thermogravimetric analysis with pyrolysis product analysis by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy were applied to investigate the thermal stability and pyrolysis products of uncoated and coated PIFs. The results indicated that the thermal properties of silver-coated PIFs were improved obviously with the 5% weight loss temperature higher than 400°C and the residual weight retentions at 800°C ∼ 80%. In the frequency range 200–7000 MHz, the EMI shielding efficiency with one surface and two surfaces coated with silver were in the range of 36.4–60.7 dB and 61.6–95.6 dB, respectively. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J. Appl. Polym. Sci., 2013