From polyester grafting onto POSS nanocage by ring-opening polymerization to high performance polyester/POSS nanocomposites
Faculty of Sciences. Physics
Journal of materials chemistry / Royal Society of Chemistry [London] - Cambridge, 1991 - 2012
, p. 9415-9422
University of Antwerp
Polyester-grafted polyhedral oligomeric silsesquioxane (POSS) nanohybrids selectively produced by ring-opening polymerization of ε-caprolactone and L,L-lactide (A.-L. Goffin, E. Duquesne, S. Moins, M. Alexandre, Ph. Dubois, Eur. Polym. Journal, 2007, 43, 4103) were studied as masterbatches by melt-blending within their corresponding commercial polymeric matrices, i.e., poly(ε-caprolactone) (PCL) and poly(L,L-lactide) (PLA). For the sake of comparison, neat POSS nanoparticles were also dispersed in PCL and PLA. The objective was to prepare aliphatic polyester-based nanocomposites with enhanced crystallization behavior, and therefore, enhanced thermo-mechanical properties. Wide-angle X-ray scattering and transmission electron microscopy attested for the dispersion of individualized POSS nanoparticles in the resulting nanocomposite materials only when the polyester-grafted POSS nanohybrid was used as a masterbatch. The large impact of such finely dispersed (grafted) nanoparticles on the crystallization behavior for the corresponding polyester matrices was noticed, as evidenced by differential scanning calorimetry analysis. Indeed, well-dispersed POSS nanoparticles acted as efficient nucleating sites, significantly increasing the crystallinity degree of both PCL and PLA matrices. As a result, a positive impact on thermo-mechanical properties was highlighted by dynamic mechanical thermal analysis.