Dispersion and alignment of carbon nanotubes in thermoplastic polymers such as polycarbonate have been studied. Dispersion was accomplished by mixing in a conical twin-screw extruder and alignment was carried out using a fiber spinning apparatus. The effects of mixing time and fiber draw ratios on dispersion and alignment were investigated. Uniform dispersions were produced with relatively short residence times in the extruder. Excellent alignment of carbon nanotubes in nanocomposite filaments was obtained when the fiber draw ratio was greater than 7. The ability to closely control the dispersion and alignment of carbon nanotubes in polymers is expected to lead to the development of nanocomposites with desirable electronic and structural properties.
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Sennett, M., Welsh, E., Wright, J.B. et al. Dispersion and Alignment of Carbon Nanotubes in Polycarbonate. MRS Online Proceedings Library 706, 3311 (2001). https://doi.org/10.1557/PROC-706-Z3.31.1