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Keywords:

  • composites;
  • nanotubes;
  • graphene and fullerenes;
  • rheology;
  • viscosity and viscoelasticity;
  • mechanical properties

ABSTRACT

Multiwall carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) with liquid-like behavior at room temperature were prepared with sulfonic acid terminated organosilanes as corona and tertiary amine as canopy. The liquid-like MWCNT derivative had low viscosity at room temperature (3.89 Pa s at 20°C) and exhibited non-Newtonian shear-thinning behavior. The weight fraction of MWCNT in the derivative was 16.72%. The MWCNT derivative showed very good dispersion in organic solvents, such as ethanol and acetone. The liquid-like MWCNT derivative was incorporated into epoxy matrix to investigate the mechanical performance of the nanocomposites and the distribution of MWCNTs in the matrix. When the liquid-like MWCNT derivative content was up to 1 wt %, the flexural strength and impact toughness of composites were 12.1 and 124% higher than the pure epoxy matrix, respectively. Transmission electron microscope (TEM) confirmed the very good dispersion of the liquid-like MWCNT derivative in epoxy matrix. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 130: 2217–2224, 2013