Improved Self-Supporting and Ceramifiable Properties of Ceramifiable EPDM Composites by Adding Aramid Fiber.
ABSTRACT: Ceramifiable ethylene propylene diene monomer (EPDM) composites with fiber network structures were prepared by using aramid fiber (AF), ammonium polyphosphate (APP), and silicate glass frits (SGF). The effect of AF on the curing characteristic of the ceramifiable EPDM composites was studied. The morphology of AF in the composites system was observed by optical microscopy (OM) and scanning electron microscope (SEM). The effects of the observed AF network structures on the solvent resistance, mechanical properties, ablative resistance, self-supporting property, and ceramifiable properties of the composites were investigated. Results suggested that the existence of the AF network structure improved the vulcanization properties, solvent resistance, thermal stability, and ablative resistance of the EPDM composites. An excellent self-supporting property of the EPDM composites was obtained by combining the formation of the AF network and the formation of crystalline phases at higher temperature (above 600 °C). The thermal shrinkage performance of AF and the increased thermal stability of the EPDM composites improved the ceramifiable properties of the EPDM composites.
Project description:The mechanically-enhanced urea-formaldehyde (UF) microcapsules are developed through a multi-step in situ polymerization method. Optical microscope (OM) and field emission scanning electron microscope (FE-SEM) prove that the microcapsules, 147.4 ?m in diameter with a shell thickness of 600 nm, are well-formed. From 1H-nuclear magnetic resonance (1H-NMR) analysis, we found that dicyclopentadiene (DCPD), a self-healing agent encapsulated by the microcapsules, occupies ca. 40.3 %(v/v) of the internal volume of a single capsule. These microcapsules are mixed with EPDM (ethylene-propylene-diene-monomer) and Grubbs' catalyst via a solution mixing method, and universal testing machine (UTM) tests show that the composites with mechanically-enhanced microcapsules has ca. 47% higher toughness than the composites with conventionally prepared UF microcapsules, which is attributed to the improved mechanical stability of the microcapsule. When the EPDM/microcapsule rubber composites are notched, Fourier-transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy shows that DCPD leaks from the broken microcapsule to the damaged site and flows to fill the notched valley, and self-heals as it is cured by Grubbs' catalyst. The self-healing efficiency depends on the capsule concentration in the EPDM matrix. However, the self-healed EPDM/microcapsule rubber composite with over 15 wt% microcapsule shows an almost full recovery of the mechanical strength and 100% healing efficiency.
Project description:Poly(l-lactic acid)/ethylene propylene diene monomer/organic montmorillonite (PLLA/EPDM/OMMT) samples were melt-compounded and then processed into sheets via two routes, namely, compression-molding and calendering. Tensile performance, morphology, and thermal property of the samples were investigated. Tensile test showed that the incorporation of OMMT resulted in significant enhancement in the tensile ductility of the PLLA/EPDM samples. SEM observation revealed that EPDM domain size decreased largely with increasing OMMT loading, indicating the compatibility of OMMT with PLLA/EPDM blends. Moreover, the elongation at break, tensile yield strength, and modulus of the calendered samples were found to be much higher than those of the compression-molded samples. It can be attributed to the pre-oriented rigid amorphous fraction of PLLA matrix and pre-stretched EPDM phases in the calendered samples produced by the stretching/shearing effect of calendering. Compared to the spherical/ellipsoidal EPDM particles in the compression-molded samples, these stretched EPDM phases with higher aspect ratio in the calendered samples can be more effective to initiate craze, and terminate the craze growing to a crack along transversal direction. Therefore, the calendered samples show a better tensile ductility than the compression-molded ones. Moreover, annealing was carried out to increase the crystallinity of the samples. Tensile performance, morphology, and thermal property of the annealed samples were also systematically investigated.
Project description:A rivet-inspired method of decorating aramid fiber (AF) with silica particles (SiO2) is proposed to produce SiO2@AF hybrid materials that have largely enhanced interfacial interaction with the rubber matrix. AF was firstly surface-modified with polyacrylic acid (PAA) to obtain PAA-AF, and SiO2 was silanized with 3-aminopropyltriethoxysilane to obtain APES-SiO2. Then, SiO2@AF was prepared by chemically bonding APES-SiO2 onto the surface of PAA-AF in the presence of dicyclohexylcarbodiimide (DCC) and 4-dimethylaminopyridine (DMAP). With the incorporation of SiO2@AF into the rubber matrix, SiO2@AF hybrid materials with high surface roughness can play a role as 'rivets' to immobilize large numbers of rubber chains on the surface. The tear strength and tensile strength of rubber composite that filling 4 phr SiO2@AF are dramatically increased by 97.8% and 89.3% compared to pure rubber, respectively. Furthermore, SiO2@AF has superiority in enhancing the cutting resistance of rubber composites, in contrast with unmodified AF and SiO2. SiO2@AF is suitable to be applied as a novel reinforcing filler in rubber composites for high performance.
Project description:We present polymer nanocomposites of tungsten bronze nanorods (TBNRs) and ethylene propylene diene monomers (EPDM). The combination of these components allows the simultaneous enhancement in the mechanical and photothermal properties of the composites at low filler contents. The as-synthesized TBNRs had lengths and diameters of 14.0 ± 2.4 nm and 2.5 ± 0.5 nm, respectively, and were capped with oleylamine, which has a chemical structure similar to EPDM, making the TBNRs compatible with the bulk EPDM matrix. The TBNRs absorb a wide range of near-infrared light because of the sub-band transitions induced by alkali metal doping. Thus, the nanocomposites of TBNRs in EPDM showed enhanced photothermal properties owing to the light absorption and subsequent heat emission by the TBNRs. Noticeably, the nanocomposite with only 3 wt% TBNRs presented significantly enhanced tensile strain at break, in comparison with those of pristine EPDM, nanocomposites with 1 and 2 wt % TBNRs, and those with tungsten bronze nanoparticles, because of the alignment of the nanorods during tensile elongation. The photothermal and mechanical properties of these nanocomposites make them promising materials for various applications such as in fibers, foams, clothes with cold weather resistance, patches or mask-like films for efficient transdermal delivery upon heat generation, and photoresponsive surfaces for droplet transport by the thermocapillary effect in microfluidic devices and microengines.
Project description:Carbon fiber-reinforced multi-layered pyrocarbon-silicon carbide matrix (C/C-SiC) composites are widely used in aerospace structures. The complicated spatial architecture and material heterogeneity of C/C-SiC composites constitute the challenge for tailoring their properties. Thus, discovering the intrinsic relations between the properties and the microstructures and sequentially optimizing the microstructures to obtain composites with the best performances becomes the key for practical applications. The objective of this work is to optimize the thermal-elastic properties of unidirectional C/C-SiC composites by controlling the multi-layered matrix thicknesses. A hybrid approach based on micromechanical modeling and back propagation (BP) neural network is proposed to predict the thermal-elastic properties of composites. Then, a particle swarm optimization (PSO) algorithm is interfaced with this hybrid model to achieve the optimal design for minimizing the coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE) of composites with the constraint of elastic modulus. Numerical examples demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed hybrid model and optimization method.
Project description:Solar heating is one of the important utilities of solar energy both in domestic and industrial sectors. Evacuated tube heaters are a commonly used technology for domestic water heating. However, increasing cost of copper and nickel has resulted in huge initial cost for these types of heaters. Utilizing solar energy more economically for domestic use requires new concept which has low initial and operating costs together with ease of maintainability. As domestic heating requires only nominal heating temperature to the range of 60-90 °C, therefore replacing nickel coated copper pipes with any cheap alternate can drastically reduce the cost of solar heater. We have proposed a new concept which utilizes double slope triangular chamber with EPDM based synthetic rubber pipes. This has reduced the initial and operating costs substantially. A detailed analytical study was carried out to design a novel solar heater. On the basis of analytical design, a prototype was manufactured. Results obtained from the experiments were found to be in good agreement with the analytical study. A maximum error of 10% was recorded at noon. However, results show that error is less than 5% in early and late hours.
Project description:Polymer composites with excellent thermal conductivity and superior mechanical strength are in high demand in the electrical engineering systems. However, achieving superior thermal conductivity and mechanical properties simultaneously at high loading of fillers will still be a challenging issue. In this work, a facile method was proposed to prepare the epoxy composite with carbon fibers (CFs) and alumina (Al2O3). This CF and Al2O3 hybrid structure can effectively reduce the interfacial thermal resistance between the matrix and the CFs. The thermal conductivity of epoxy composite with 6.4 wt % CFs and 74 wt % Al2O3 hybrid filler reaches 3.84 W/(m K), which is increasing by 2096% compared with that of pure epoxy. Meanwhile, the epoxy composite still retains outstanding thermal stability and mechanical performance at high filler loading. A cost-effective avenue to prepare highly thermally conductive and superior mechanical properties of polymer-based composites may enable some prospective application in advanced thermal management.
Project description:Three-dimensional graphene network is a promising structure for improving both the mechanical properties and functional capabilities of reinforced polymer and ceramic matrix composites. However, direct application in a metal matrix remains difficult due to the reason that wetting is usually unfavorable in the carbon/metal system. Here we report a powder-metallurgy based strategy to construct a three-dimensional continuous graphene network architecture in a copper matrix through thermal-stress-induced welding between graphene-like nanosheets grown on the surface of copper powders. The interpenetrating structural feature of the as-obtained composites not only promotes the interfacial shear stress to a high level and thus results in significantly enhanced load transfer strengthening and crack-bridging toughening simultaneously, but also constructs additional three-dimensional hyperchannels for electrical and thermal conductivity. Our approach offers a general way for manufacturing metal matrix composites with high overall performance.
Project description:Space charges tend to accumulate on the surface and at the interface of ethylene⁻propylene⁻diene terpolymer (EPDM), serving as high voltage direct current (HVDC) cable accessory insulation, which likely induces electrical field distortion and dielectric breakdown. Direct fluorination is an effective method to modify the surface characteristics of the EPDM without altering the bulk properties too much. In this paper, the surface morphology, hydrophobic properties, relative permittivity, and DC conductivity of the EPDM before and after fluorination treatment were tested. Furthermore, the surface and interface charge behaviors in the HVDC cable accessory were investigated by the pulsed electroacoustic (PEA) method, and explained from the point of view of trap distribution. The results show that fluorination helps the EPDM polymer obtain lower surface energy and relative permittivity, which is beneficial to the interface match in composite insulation systems. The lowest degree of space charge accumulation occurs in EPDM with 30 min of fluorination. After analyzing the results of the 3D potentials and the density of states (DOS) behaviors in EPDM before and after fluorination, it can be found that fluorination treatment introduces shallower electron traps, and the special electrostatic potential after fluorination can significantly suppress the space charge accumulation at the interface in the HVDC cable accessory.
Project description:Polymer composites with high thermal conductivity have recently attracted much attention, along with the rapid development of the electronic devices toward higher speed and performance. However, a common method to enhance polymer thermal conductivity through an addition of high thermally conductive fillers usually cannot provide an expected value, especially for composites requiring electrical insulation. Here, we show that polymeric composites with silver nanoparticle-deposited boron nitride nanosheets as fillers could effectively enhance the thermal conductivity of polymer, thanks to the bridging connections of silver nanoparticles among boron nitride nanosheets. The thermal conductivity of the composite is significantly increased from 1.63?W/m-K for the composite filled with the silver nanoparticle-deposited boron nitride nanosheets to 3.06?W/m-K at the boron nitride nanosheets loading of 25.1 vol %. In addition, the electrically insulating properties of the composite are well preserved. Fitting the measured thermal conductivity of epoxy composite with one physical model indicates that the composite with silver nanoparticle-deposited boron nitride nanosheets outperforms the one with boron nitride nanosheets, owning to the lower thermal contact resistance among boron nitride nanosheets' interfaces. The finding sheds new light on enhancement of thermal conductivity of the polymeric composites which concurrently require the electrical insulation.