• fibers;
  • polyimides;
  • composites


Ultrathin polyimide fibers were prepared using the organoalkoxysilanes (3-triethoxysilylpropyl)succinic anhydride (TESP-SA) and (3-amino)propyl triethoxysilane (APTES). In the first step, a viscous solution of the corresponding poly(amic) acid (PAA) was produced and electrospun at various high voltages. The fiber diameter distributions of the as-prepared fibers were measured. The thermal imidization at 220°C resulted in the formation of an organic–inorganic hybrid polyimide fiber assembly as shown by FTIR/ATR. Surface morphology was investigated by means of SEM images. TGA measurements made evident that the prepared fibers begin to decompose at 380°C. XRPD pattern of the fibers revealed that a certain ladder-like order exists in the fibers. The water vapor absorption of the thermally (220°C) treated ultrathin polyimide fibers was evaluated. The fiber assemblies treated at 110°C were water soluble, whereas those treated at 220°C were insoluble in water and organic solvents. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J. Appl. Polym. Sci., 2013