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Keywords:

  • clay;
  • kinetics (polym.);
  • nanocomposites;
  • poly(propylene) (PP);
  • thermal degradation

Abstract

The thermal degradation kinetics of polypropylene/clay microcomposites and nanocomposites were studied by thermogravimetric analysis. In comparison with pure polypropylene, the reaction order of the degradation of the composites became zero-order, and the activation energy increased dramatically. The zero-order kinetics were associated with the acidic sites (H+) created on the clay layers, whereas the increase in the activation energy was coupled with the shielding effect of clay. The kinetic analysis could provide additional mechanistic clues concerning the thermal stability and flammability of polymer/clay nanocomposites. © 2005 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Polym Sci Part B: Polym Phys 43: 3713–3719, 2005