• biodegradable;
  • biomedical applications;
  • biomaterials


To improve the mechanical properties and shelf-life of barium sulfate nanoparticles (BaSO4-NPs)/polyethylene (PE) composites, which are used as the scaffold of T-shaped copper intrauterine devices (Cu-IUDs) in the clinic, an Al coupling agent was used to modify BaSO4-NPs. The influence of the Al coupling agent on the microstructures, properties, and shelf-life of the nanocomposites were investigated. The results showed that: (1) a chemical reaction occurred between the Al coupling agent and the hydroxyl groups adsorbed by BaSO4-NPs. (2) BaSO4-NPs modified by the Al coupling agent dispersed in the PE matrix were much better than unmodified NPs. The interface bonding between modified NPs and the PE matrix was better than unmodified NPs. (3) the maximum tensile strength of nanocomposites containing modified NPs was 11.87 MPa, flexural strength was 6.61 MPa, and the elongation rate was 66.78%. (4) After an accelerated aging experiment, the tensile strength of the nanocomposites only decreased 5–15%. All of these results indicate that m-BaSO4-NPs/PE nanocomposites are more clinically useful than unmodified nanocomposites. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 2014, 131, 40393.