Properties of matrix-grafted multi-walled carbon nanotube/poly(methyl methacrylate) nanocomposites synthesized by in situ reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer polymerization

Abstract

Multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNT)/poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) nanocomposites were synthesized by the in situ reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization of methyl methacrylate (MMA) in the presence of MWCNTs, at which the bulk polymer was grafted onto the surface of nanotubes through the “grafting through” strategy. For this purpose, MWCNTs were formerly functionalized with polymerizable MMA groups. MMA and PMMA-grafted MWCNTs were characterized by Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy, Raman, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and thermogravimetric analysis (TGA). Dissolution of nanotubes was examined in chloroform solvent and studied by UV–vis spectroscopy. Thermogravimetric and degradation behavior of prepared nanocomposites was investigated by TGA. MWCNTs had a noticeable boosting effect on the thermal stability of nanocomposites. TGA thermograms showed a two-step weight loss pattern for the degradation of MWCNT-PMMA/PMMA nanocomposites which is contrast with neat PMMA. Introduction of MWCNTs also improved the dynamic mechanical behavior and electrical conductivity of nanocomposites. TEM micrograph of nanocomposite revealed that the applied methods for functionalization of nanotubes and in situ synthesis of nanocomposites were comparatively successful in dispersing the MWCNTs in PMMA matrix.

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Correspondence to Vahid Haddadi-Asl.

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Rahimi-Razin, S., Haddadi-Asl, V., Salami-Kalajahi, M. et al. Properties of matrix-grafted multi-walled carbon nanotube/poly(methyl methacrylate) nanocomposites synthesized by in situ reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer polymerization. J IRAN CHEM SOC 9, 877–887 (2012). https://doi.org/10.1007/s13738-012-0104-5

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Keywords

  • Poly(methyl methacrylate)
  • Multi-walled carbon nanotubes
  • Nanocomposites
  • Grafting through
  • Reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer polymerization