, Volume 36, Issue 4, pp 411-418
Date: 13 Dec 2005

Development of electroconductive polyacrylonitrile fibers through chemical metallization and galvanisation

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The paper describes the modification of PAN fibres with metallic nickel in order to give the fibre electroconductive properties. This is achieved by two consecutively executed processes. The first process is chemical metallization, involving the immersion of the PAN fibres in a bath containing 0.5 mol l−1 NiCl2 and 1.5 mol l−1 Rongalite at pH = 5.5 and T=288–293 K. Ni(II) is absorbed in the structure of the fibre and adsorbed at the surface through a complex reaction with the cyanide and carboxylic acid groups present in the PAN chemical structure and the Rongalite reduces the adsorbed Ni(II) to metallic Ni. The second process is galvanisation of the Ni-containing PAN surface (the Ni particles present at the surface form a “seed” layer) in an electrolyte bath using an electrolyte with 150 g l−1 of NiSO4 at pH 5–6 and room temperature. The resulting fibre showed a specific electrical resistance of the order of 10−6 Ω m, which is a promising result.