Journal of Materials Science

, Volume 10, Issue 7, pp 1127–1136 | Cite as

The effect of polymerization conditions and crystallinity on the mechanical properties and fracture of spherulitic nylon 6

  • T. J. Bessell
  • D. Hull
  • J. B. Shortall


The molecular and structural parameters controlling the mechanical properties, deformation and fracture of spherulitic nylon 6 have been investigated. The nylon was prepared by the anionic polymerization of ε-caprolactam and the polymerization conditions were varied to give samples having a range of spherulite diameter, molecular weight and degree of crystallinity. The tensile properties and fracture mode of the nylon varied considerably with degree of crystallinity and polymerization temperature. High crystallinity and low polymerization temperatures below 423 K gave a brittle material. Polymerization above 423 K resulted in a ductile material which showed a yield drop. In this material final fracture was preceded by the formation of inter and trans spherulitic cracks which coalesced to form a large cavity that led to final failure. In nylon having a low degree of crystallinity, fracture was fibrillar in nature and occurred by the ductile drawing of the material to strains greater than 250%.


Polymerization Mechanical Property Brittle Nylon Tensile Property 
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Copyright information

© Chapman and Hall Ltd. 1975

Authors and Affiliations

  • T. J. Bessell
    • 1
  • D. Hull
    • 1
  • J. B. Shortall
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Metallurgy and Materials ScienceUniversity of LiverpoolUK

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