Toward “Rubbery” nanoparticles

Authors

  • Padmanabhan Predeep,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Physics, Laboratory for Molecular Photonics and Electronics (LAMP), National Institute of Technology, Calicut, Kerala 673601, India
    • Department. of Physics, Laboratory for Molecular Photonics and Electronics (LAMP), National Institute of Technology, Calicut, Kerala 673601, India
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Najidha Safiya,

    1. Department of Physics, Laboratory for Molecular Photonics and Electronics (LAMP), National Institute of Technology, Calicut, Kerala 673601, India
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Neena Prasad

    1. Department of Physics, Laboratory for Molecular Photonics and Electronics (LAMP), National Institute of Technology, Calicut, Kerala 673601, India
    Search for more papers by this author

Abstract

The synthesis of electrically Conducting Natural Rubber (CNR) nanoparticles from natural rubber (cis 1, 4 polyisoprene) by a simple chemical doping technique is reported for the first time. Much before the establishment of conjugation as a precondition for polymers to be conducting a typical nonconjugated polymer like cis 1,4 polyisoprene was shown to develop intrinsic conductivity on doping. However, the possibility of developing conducting nanoparticles of natural rubber by doping has never been explored. Doping of natural rubber solution with Antimony pentchloride is found to lead to the formation of nanosized rubber particles with improved thermal stability and lower degradation characteristics than that of pristine rubber. Transmission electron microscopy and Dynamic Light Scattering experiments revealed a highly uniform dispersion of the particles with sizes in the range of 4 nm. The doped nanoparticles are found to retain “rubbery” properties of natural rubber and therefore these can be rightly termed as Rubber Nano particles. The development of nanoparticles of rubber assumes great significance in that it would lead to hitherto unknown applications for natural rubber in micro applications-like sensors, and optoelectronics devices to macro applications such as compatible reinforcing fillers for elastomers and plastics to replace conventional fillers like carbon particles. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J. Appl. Polym. Sci., 2013

Ancillary