Melt Processing and Properties of Polyamide 6/Graphene Nanoplatelet Composites

B. Mayoral, E. Harkin-Jones, P. Noorunnisa Khanam, M. A. AlMaadeed , M. Ouederni, A. Hamilton, D. Sun

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


In this paper, the processing and characterization of Polyamide 6 (PA6) / graphite nanoplatelets
(GNPs) composites is reported. PA6/GNPs composites 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
GNPs type (xGnP® M-5 and xGnP® C-500), GNPs content, and extruder screw speed on the bulk
properties of the PA6/GNPs nanocomposites were investigated. Results show a considerable
improvement in the thermal and mechanical properties of PA6/GNPs composites, as compared with
the unfilled PA6 polymer. An increase in crystallinity (%Xc) with increasing GNPs content, and a
change in shape of the crystallization exotherms (broadening) and melting endotherms, both suggest a
change in the crystal type and perfection. An increase in tensile modulus of as much as 376% and
412% was observed for PA6/M-5 xGnP® and PA6/C-500 xGnP® composites, respectively, at filler
contents 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 rheological response
of the composite resembles that of a ‘pseudo-solid’, rather than a molten liquid, and analysis of the
rheological data indicates that a percolation threshold was reached at GNPs contents of between 10–
15wt%. The electrical conductivity of the composite also increased with increasing GNPs content,
with an addition of 15wt% GNPs resulting in a 6 order-of-magnitude increase in conductivity. The
electrical percolation thresholds of all composites were between 10–15wt%.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 20th International Conference on Composite Materials
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 2015
EventICCM20 20th International Conference on Composite Materials - Copenhagen, Denmark
Duration: 19 Jul 201524 Jul 2015


ConferenceICCM20 20th International Conference on Composite Materials

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