In this paper, the processing and characterization of Polyamide 6 (PA6) nanocomposites containing graphite nanoplatelets (GNPs) is reported. PA6 nanocomposites were prepared by melt-mixing using an industrial, co-rotating, intermeshing, twin-screw extruder. A bespoke screw configuration was used that was designed in-house to enhance nanoparticle dispersion into a polymer matrix. The effects of nano-filler type (xGnPTM M-5 and xGnPTM C-500), nano-filler content, and extruder screw speed on the bulk properties of the PA6 nanocomposites were investigated. The crystalline structures of PA6 nanocomposites are related to thermal treatment, stress history and the presence of moisture and nanofillers. DSC, Raman and XRD studies show an increase in crystallinity with increasing GNP content and a phase transformation between α-form to γ-form crystals as a result of the heterophase nucleation effect. The effect of uniaxial stretching on PA6 nanocomposites was investigated by drawing specimens heated at temperatures below the melting temperature. DSC and Raman studies on the drawn samples show an increase in yield stress as the GNP content increases due to the strain induced crystallization and γ—β transition during stretching. The rheological response of the nanocomposites resemble that of a ‘pseudo-solid’, rather than a molten liquid, and analysis of the rheological data indicates that a percolation threshold was reached at GNP contents of between 10–15wt%. An increase in tensile modulus of as much as 412% was observed for PA6/C-500 xGnPTM composites, at a filler content of 20wt%. The enhancement of Young’s modulus and yield stress can be attributed to the reinforcing effect of GNPs and their uniform dispersion in the PA6 matrix. The electrical conductivity of the composite also increased with increasing GNP content, with an addition of 15wt% GNP resulting in a 6 order-of-magnitude increase in conductivity. The effects of uniaxial-drawing and the inclusion of multiple nano-filler varieties on the electrical and mechanical properties are currently under investigation.
|Title of host publication||Proceedings of The Tenth International Conference on Composites Science and Technology|
|Publication status||Published - 2015|
|Event||10th International Conference on Composites Science and Technology - Instituto Superior Technico, Lisbon, Portugal|
Duration: 02 Sep 2015 → 04 Sep 2015
|Conference||10th International Conference on Composites Science and Technology|
|Period||02/09/2015 → 04/09/2015|