Journal of Materials Science

, Volume 46, Issue 21, pp 7046–7055 | Cite as

Polymer nanocomposites based on epoxy resin and ATH as a new flame retardant for CFRP: preparation and thermal characterisation

  • Daniela Könnicke
  • Alexandra Kühn
  • Thorsten Mahrholz
  • Michael Sinapius


Nanoscale aluminium trihydroxide (ATH) is examined to its suitability for carbon fibre reinforced plastics (CFRP) as a novel flame retardant. In particular the influence of particle size and concentration of ATH to the fire behaviour of epoxy polymer matrices is determined. The particle size is adjusted by means of different dispersing techniques. By SEM images and viscosity measurements the homogeneity of the produced ATH dispersions for the liquid ones and of cured epoxy–ATH nanocomposites is determined. Based on these pre-results, selected ATH dispersions are used for the manufacturing of CFRP which are produced by the proved injection technology. The thermal stability of the ATH nanocomposite plates and the corresponding CFRP plates are analyzed by means of quantitative single difference thermoanalysis (QSDTA). The fire behaviour is characterised by using the OSU chamber test. Both tests indicate a reduced heat release rate by decreasing the ATH particle size, i.e. the thermal load decreases. A combined fire protection mechanism is discussed for the improved fire protection through ATH nanoparticles.


Flame Retardant Heat Release Rate Fire Protection Fire Behaviour Carbon Fibre Reinforce Plastic 



The authors wish to thank Mr. B. Müller (DLR, Trauen, Germany) for performing the flammability tests and Mr. O. Torno (Sasol, Germany) for providing with the ATH particles.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Daniela Könnicke
    • 1
  • Alexandra Kühn
    • 1
  • Thorsten Mahrholz
    • 1
  • Michael Sinapius
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Composite Structures and Adaptive SystemsGerman Aerospace Centre (DLR)BrunswickGermany

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