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Recent Advances in Conductive and Electrical Insulating Polymer Composites

A special issue of Materials (ISSN 1996-1944). This special issue belongs to the section "Advanced Composites".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 20 October 2024 | Viewed by 4772

Special Issue Editor


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Guest Editor
Key Laboratory of Artificial Micro- and Nano-Structures of Ministry of Education, Department of Physics, Wuhan University, Wuhan 430072, China
Interests: nanomaterials; nanocomposites; composite insulator; piezocatalysis; photocatalysis; polymer composites
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Recent advances in conductive and electrical insulating polymer composites have been focused on developing materials with enhanced electrical conductivity and insulation properties. These composites are mainly utilized in various electronic applications, such as printed circuit boards, sensors, and energy storage devices.

One key area of research is the incorporation of fillers into the polymer matrix in order to enhance conductivity. The application of conductive fillers like carbon nanotubes, graphene, and metal nanoparticles has shown promising results regarding improvements in conductivity. Researchers have also explored the use of hybrid composites, in which multiple fillers are combined, in order to further enhance the electrical properties.

To achieve a superior insulation performance, researchers have endeavored to develop novel polymer matrices with high dielectric strengths. One strategy involves modifying the polymer structure to improve alignment and reduce defects, leading to enhanced insulation properties. Another approach involves the incorporation of insulating fillers, such as ceramic nanoparticles or glass fibers, to enhance dielectric strength.

Researchers have also explored various processing techniques in order to optimize the dispersion and interfacial interaction between the polymer matrix and fillers. These techniques include melt blending, solution casting, and in situ polymerization. These methods aim to achieve a uniform distribution of fillers and promote strong adhesion between the matrix and fillers, which directly impact the electrical properties of the composites.

Overall, recent advances in conductive and electrical insulating polymer composites have showcased promising developments in both conductivity and insulation performance. By tailoring the composition, structure, and processing methods, researchers are working towards developing composites with superior electrical properties for a wide range of electronic applications.

We look forward to receiving your contributions to  this Special Issue!

Prof. Dr. Pengfei Fang
Guest Editor

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Keywords

  • silicone rubber
  • composite insulating materials
  • insulating coatings
  • fiber-reinforced insulating materials
  • conductive composites

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

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15 pages, 17179 KiB  
Article
Analysis of Aging Characteristics of Umbrella Skirts of Composite Insulators Operating under the Influence of a Wind and Sand Environment in South Xinjiang
by Xiaojun Zhang, Shilong Kuang, Suzhou Wu, Wenbing Zhuang and Chunqing He
Materials 2024, 17(3), 680; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma17030680 - 31 Jan 2024
Viewed by 589
Abstract
To study the influence of multi-factors, such as long sunshine, sand erosion, and so on, in southern Xinjiang, we selected two kinds of composite insulators for the transmission lines in southern Xinjiang to study the aging characteristics of the umbrella skirt surface. The [...] Read more.
To study the influence of multi-factors, such as long sunshine, sand erosion, and so on, in southern Xinjiang, we selected two kinds of composite insulators for the transmission lines in southern Xinjiang to study the aging characteristics of the umbrella skirt surface. The results of scanning electron microscope (SEM) and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) show that the surface roughness of the umbrella skirt is high and there are a large number of micron inorganic particles. The skirt has the characteristics of low C/O element ratio and high Al element content. The results of thermogravimetric analysis and micro infrared test show that the aging depth of the Myli Line skirt after 19 years of operation is 160~190 µm and that of Yuhe Line 1 after 14 years of operation is greater than 180 µm. The plasma discharge method was used to simulate the corona discharge in the actual operation to accelerate the aging of the surface of the umbrella skirt and the hydrophobic recovery of the umbrella skirt was investigated. The results show that the temperature has a great influence on the surface hydrophobic recovery performance after plasma treatment. These results may provide some theoretical guidance and technical support for the selection, operation, and maintenance of composite insulators in Xinjiang. Full article
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12 pages, 7181 KiB  
Article
Fabrication of a Fluorocarbon Low Surface Energy Coating for Anti-Stain Applications
by Siwei Pan, Qing Hu, Yaohong Zhao, Qing Wang, Yuanyuan Li, Yihua Qian and Chunqing He
Materials 2023, 16(24), 7516; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma16247516 - 5 Dec 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 785
Abstract
In the long-term working state, stains such as dust, oil, and charged particles in the environment are prone to deposit on the surface of the power equipment, which has great security risks. To achieve anti-stain performance, fluorocarbon composite coating with a low surface [...] Read more.
In the long-term working state, stains such as dust, oil, and charged particles in the environment are prone to deposit on the surface of the power equipment, which has great security risks. To achieve anti-stain performance, fluorocarbon composite coating with a low surface energy was prepared and studied. In this paper, SiO2 nanoparticles were used as inorganic fillers and fluorocarbon resin was used as the substrate to form anti-stain coatings. By adjusting and optimizing the ratio of fillers and organic resins, coatings with different static contact angles were constructed. The optimum composite coating has a contact angle of 151 ± 2° and a surface energy of 9.6 mJ/m2. After high-temperature treatment (up to 200 °C), immersion in corrosive solutions (pH 3–11), and sandpaper abrasion (after 5 abrasion cycles), the coating has been proven to show good thermal, chemical and mechanical stability. Our study provides significant research and market opportunities for the anti-stain application of the fluorocarbon composite coating on power equipment. Full article
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12 pages, 3626 KiB  
Article
Design and Synthesis of Low Surface Energy Coating with Functionalized Al2O3 Nanoparticles
by Siwei Pan, Yuanyuan Li, Yaohong Zhao, Qing Wang, Qing Hu, Yihua Qian and Chunqing He
Materials 2023, 16(22), 7223; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma16227223 - 18 Nov 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 817
Abstract
In a high-moisture environment where dust and coastal saltwater are prevalent, the stability of power equipment can be adversely affected. This issue can result in equipment downtime, particularly for transformers, severely disrupting the continuous operation of DC transmission systems. To address this challenge, [...] Read more.
In a high-moisture environment where dust and coastal saltwater are prevalent, the stability of power equipment can be adversely affected. This issue can result in equipment downtime, particularly for transformers, severely disrupting the continuous operation of DC transmission systems. To address this challenge, a superhydrophobic modified fluorosilicone coating was developed, incorporating anti-stain properties. To tackle this issue comprehensively, an orthogonal experiment was conducted, involving six factors and three levels. The study focused particularly on assessing the impact of water-repellent recovery agents, nanofillers, antistatic agents, anti-mold agents, leveling agents, as well as wetting and dispersing agents on the coating’s surface tension. The results demonstrate that selecting an appropriate base resin and incorporating well-matched functional additives played a central role in effectively reducing the surface tension of the coating. Consequently, optimized coatings exhibited exceptional resistance to stains and displayed strong corrosion resistance. Full article
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13 pages, 5123 KiB  
Article
The Influence of Titanium Dioxide Nanosheet on Water Permeability of Silicone Rubber after Nitrogen Dioxide Aging Treatment
by Xiangyang Peng, Jinshuai Zhang, Jiapeng Fang, Zheng Wang, Zhen Huang, Shilong Kuang and Chunqing He
Materials 2023, 16(22), 7138; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma16227138 - 12 Nov 2023
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Abstract
In this study, the aging process of a surface-functional titanium dioxide nanosheet (f-TNS) composited room-temperature-vulcanized silicone rubber (RTV) composite coating was simulated in a NO2 generation device, and then the electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) of the aged composite coating was tested in [...] Read more.
In this study, the aging process of a surface-functional titanium dioxide nanosheet (f-TNS) composited room-temperature-vulcanized silicone rubber (RTV) composite coating was simulated in a NO2 generation device, and then the electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) of the aged composite coating was tested in a 3.5% NaCl solution. The water permeation process was analyzed by the changes in the impedance modulus, porosity, and breakpoint frequency of the composite coating. The experimental results show that the water permeability of aged RTV decreases first and then increases with the increase in the composite proportion of f-TNS. When the composite proportion of TNS was 0.3 wt.%, the composite sample had the minimum water permeability and the best resistance to NO2 corrosion. The effect of TNS on the NO2 aging resistance of RTV composites and its mechanism were studied by SEM, FT-IR, and XPS. The impedance modulus and porosity of the aged 0.3% f-TNS/RTV, respectively, were 1.82 × 107 Ω cm2 and 0.91 × 10−4%, which increased by 2.23 times and decreased by 0.37 times, respectively, compared with the values of aged pure RTV sample. In addition, the breakpoint frequency of the aged 0.3% f-TNS/RTV also significantly reduced to 11.3 Hz, whereas it was 35 Hz in aged pure RTV. Full article
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Review

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20 pages, 4075 KiB  
Review
Recycling of Electrical Cables—Current Challenges and Future Prospects
by Maciej Wędrychowicz, Jagoda Kurowiak, Tomasz Skrzekut and Piotr Noga
Materials 2023, 16(20), 6632; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma16206632 - 10 Oct 2023
Viewed by 1393
Abstract
Civilization and technical progress are not possible without energy. Dynamic economic growth translates into a systematic increase in demand for electricity. Ensuring the continuity and reliability of electricity supplies is one of the most important aspects of energy security in highly developed countries. [...] Read more.
Civilization and technical progress are not possible without energy. Dynamic economic growth translates into a systematic increase in demand for electricity. Ensuring the continuity and reliability of electricity supplies is one of the most important aspects of energy security in highly developed countries. Growing energy consumption results not only in the need to build new power plants but also in the need to expand and increase transmission capacity. Therefore, large quantities of electric cables are produced all over the world, and after some time, they largely become waste. Recycling of electric cables focuses on the recovery of metals, mainly copper and aluminum, while polymer insulation is often considered waste and ends up in landfills. Currently, more and more stringent regulations are being introduced, mainly environmental ones, which require maximizing the reduction in waste. This article provides a literature review on cable recycling, presenting the advantages and disadvantages of various recycling methods, including mechanical and material recycling. It has been found that currently, there are very large possibilities for recycling cables, and intensive scientific work is being carried out on their development, which is consistent with global climate policy. Full article
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