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Polymer ¡VCeramic Nanocomposites with Multifunctional Properties

Amit Singhal and Ganesh Skandan
Nanopowder Enterprises Inc., US

Keywords: polymer nanocomposite, multifunctional, coatings, abrasion resistant

Bulk as well as coatings of polymer nanocomposites with multifunctional properties is needed for a variety of applications, including ophthalmic lenses, automobile windows, aircraft transparencies, and heat sinks for electronic modules. To meet the stringent requirements of many of these applications, we are developing a new class of hard, chemically resistant and optically transparent coatings composed of large-sized ceramic particles/aggregates (> 0.1 ƒÝm) dispersed in an organic ¡V inorganic nanocomposite matrix. Large ceramic particles impart excellent wear and scratch resistance due to their large wear surface. We have engineered the surface of these particles for insuring a smooth interface between the particles and the matrix. For the first time, transparent films with a high weight fraction (> 20 wt.%) of large ceramic particles have been developed. It has been observed that incorporating ceramic particles significantly enhances the elastic modulus and hardness of the coatings. A similar strategy is being used in case of bulk polymer nanocomposites, wherein surface modified ceramic nanoparticles are incorporated in a polymer matrix to impart certain structural and functional properties. The structure and corresponding properties of both bulk polymer nanocomposites and coatings will be discussed. The authors acknowledge technical input from Prof. G. L. Wilkes of Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

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