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Proceedings Paper

Effect of sonication on the mechanical properties of poly (vinyl alcohol)/carbon nanotube composites
Author(s): Van-Tan Truong; Kelly M. C. Tsang; Shannon J. Keough; Nigel A. St John
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Paper Abstract

Several sonication procedures were performed on multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWNTs) in water by varying the length of time, the output power and the type of sonicating horn. Depending on the sonicating conditions, the multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWNTs) could be well or poorly exfoliated and dispersed. Poly (vinyl alcohol) (PVA) and MNWT (0.5 wt%) composites were cast from the PVA/MWNT aqueous mixture. Enhancement of the mechanical properties of the composites was related to two factors: (1) crystallinity formed at the PVA and MWNT interface and (2) the size of nanotube agglomerates. The poorly dispersed solution produced nanotube agglomerates with the size of 50-100 μm that did not induce crystallization at the polymer/nanotube interface. They became stress concentrators reducing the Young's modulus and the tensile strength. Optimized sonication procedures resulted in well-dispersed nanotube agglomerates of submicron dimensions efficiently enhancing the mechanical properties. As centrifugation facilitated the removal of large agglomerates, noticeable enhancement of mechanical properties of the composites was achieved.

Paper Details

Date Published: 20 December 2006
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 6415, Micro- and Nanotechnology: Materials, Processes, Packaging, and Systems III, 641503 (20 December 2006); doi: 10.1117/12.695317
Show Author Affiliations
Van-Tan Truong, Defence Science and Technology Organisation (Australia)
Kelly M. C. Tsang, Defence Science and Technology Organisation (Australia)
Shannon J. Keough, Defence Science and Technology Organisation (Australia)
Nigel A. St John, Defence Science and Technology Organisation (Australia)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6415:
Micro- and Nanotechnology: Materials, Processes, Packaging, and Systems III
Jung-Chih Chiao; Andrew S. Dzurak; Chennupati Jagadish; David Victor Thiel, Editor(s)

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