Carbon-Based Polymer Nanocomposites for High-Performance Applications II

A special issue of Polymers (ISSN 2073-4360). This special issue belongs to the section "Polymer Composites and Nanocomposites".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 November 2020) | Viewed by 19005

Special Issue Editor

Facultad de Ciencias, Departamento de Química Analítica, Universidad de Alcalá, Química Física e Ingeniería Química, Ctra. Madrid-Barcelona Km. 33.6, 28805 Alcalá de Henares, Madrid, Spain
Interests: nanomaterials; polymers; nanocomposites; inorganic nanoparticles; antibacterial agents; surfactants; interphases
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Further to the success of the Special Issue of Polymers "Carbon-Based Polymer Nanocomposites for High-Performance Applications", we are delighted to reopen the 2nd edition of this special issue here.

Carbon-based nanomaterials such as carbon nanotubes, graphene and its derivatives, nanodiamond, fullerenes, and other nano-sized carbon allotropes have recently attracted a lot of attention among the scientific community due to their enormous potential for a wide number of applications arising from their large specific surface area, high electrical and thermal conductivity, and good mechanical properties.  The combination of carbon nanomaterials with polymers leads to new nanocomposites with improved structural and functional properties due to synergistic effects. In particular, the properties of carbon-based polymer nanocomposites can be easily tuned by carefully controlling the carbon nanomaterial synthesis route and additionally the versatile synergistic interactions amongst the nanomaterials and polymers.

This Special Issue aims to offer a forum for the publication of original research/review articles regarding carbon nanomaterial-reinforced polymeric composites. It includes all types of polymeric matrices (i.e., thermoplastics, epoxies, conducting polymers, bio-polymers, etc.) and covers all branches and aspects of new processing techniques, testing methods, and standards, along with their applications. Novel surface modifications of carbon nanomaterials to develop nanocomposites are welcome, as well as the investigation of the advanced, physicochemical properties of the nanocomposites (as compared with conventional materials). Authors are encouraged to submit their original works stressing the applications of the nanocomposites in a variety of fields, such as in electronics, energy storage, automobiles, aerospace engineering, biomedicine, and so forth.

Potential topics include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Novel techniques for the development of carbon-based polymer nanocomposites;
  • The morphological characterization of carbon-based polymer nanocomposites;
  • The mechanical and tribological properties of carbon nanomaterial/polymer composites;
  • Thermal studies on carbon nanomaterial/polymer composites;  
    The conducting or optical properties of the nanocomposites;
  • The surface modification of carbon nanomaterials for improving the interaction with functional groups of polymers and sensing studies;
  • Biomedical applications of carbon based-polymer nanocomposites;
  • Energy and solar cell applications of carbon nanomaterial/polymer composites.

Prof. Dr. Ana María Díez-Pascual
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Polymers is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2700 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Nanomaterials
  • Carbon nanotubes
  • Graphene
  • Fullerenes
  • Mechanical properties
  • Optical properties
  • Thermal properties
  • Biomedical applications
  • Energy applications

Published Papers (8 papers)

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Editorial

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3 pages, 207 KiB  
Editorial
Carbon-Based Polymer Nanocomposites for High-Performance Applications II
Polymers 2022, 14(5), 870; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym14050870 - 23 Feb 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1376
Abstract
In the field of science and technology, carbon-based nanomaterials, such as carbon nanotubes (CNTs), graphene, graphene oxide, graphene quantum dots (GQDs), fullerenes, and so forth, are becoming very attractive for a wide number of applications [...] Full article

Research

Jump to: Editorial

17 pages, 4352 KiB  
Article
Enhanced Piezoelectric Properties of Poly(Vinylidenefluoride-Co-Trifluoroethylene)/Carbon-Based Nanomaterial Composite Films for Pressure Sensing Applications
Polymers 2020, 12(12), 2999; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym12122999 - 16 Dec 2020
Cited by 17 | Viewed by 2588
Abstract
In this study, heat and polarization treatments were applied to poly(vinylidenefluoride-co-trifluoroethylene (PVDF-TrFE) films to improve their crystallinity and piezoelectric effect. Carbon-based nanomaterials (CBNs) of multiple dimensions (i.e., modified zero-dimensional (0D) carbon black (OCB), one-dimensional (1D) modified carbon nanotubes (CNT–COOH) and two-dimensional (2D) graphene [...] Read more.
In this study, heat and polarization treatments were applied to poly(vinylidenefluoride-co-trifluoroethylene (PVDF-TrFE) films to improve their crystallinity and piezoelectric effect. Carbon-based nanomaterials (CBNs) of multiple dimensions (i.e., modified zero-dimensional (0D) carbon black (OCB), one-dimensional (1D) modified carbon nanotubes (CNT–COOH) and two-dimensional (2D) graphene oxide (GO)) were added to the copolymer to study the effects of different CBN dimensions on the crystallinity and piezoelectric effect of PVDF-TrFE films. Additionally, amphiphilic polymeric dispersants were added to improve the dispersibility of CBNs; the dispersant was synthesized by the amidation, and imidization reactions of styrene-maleic anhydride copolymer (SMAz) and polyoxyalkylene amine (M1000). Polymer solutions with different ratios of CBN to dispersant (z = 10:1, 5:1, 1:1, 1:5, 1:10) were prepared. The enhanced dispersibility enabled the fluorine atoms in the PVDF-TrFE molecular chain to more efficiently form hydrogen bonds with the –COOH group in the CBN, thereby increasing the content of the β crystal phase (the origin of the piezoelectric effect) of the film. Therefore, the resulting film exhibited a higher output voltage on the application side and better sensitivity on the sensing element. The addition of CNT–COOH and polymeric dispersants increased the β-phase content in PVDF-TrFE from 73.6% to 86.4%, which in turn raised the piezoelectric coefficient from 19.8 ± 1.0 to 26.4 ± 1.3 pC/N. The composite film-based pressure sensor also exhibited a high degree of sensitivity, which is expected to have commercial potential in the future. Full article
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22 pages, 6936 KiB  
Article
Thermal Mechanical Properties of Graphene Nano-Composites with Kevlar-Nomex Copolymer: A Comparison of the Physical and Chemical Interactions
Polymers 2020, 12(11), 2740; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym12112740 - 19 Nov 2020
Cited by 16 | Viewed by 2648
Abstract
This paper reports the preparation of Kevlar-Nomex copolymer nano-composites with exfoliated pristine and functionalized graphene sheets (Grs). The graphene oxide (GrO) platelets were amidized by the reaction of amine-terminated aramid (Ar) with the functional groups present on the GrO surface to prepare the [...] Read more.
This paper reports the preparation of Kevlar-Nomex copolymer nano-composites with exfoliated pristine and functionalized graphene sheets (Grs). The graphene oxide (GrO) platelets were amidized by the reaction of amine-terminated aramid (Ar) with the functional groups present on the GrO surface to prepare the nano-composites films with different loadings of GrO. Chemical changes involved during the oxidation and subsequent amidation were monitored by Raman, FTIR and XP spectroscopic analyses. Morphology of the composite films was studied by atomic force and scanning electron microscopies. Viscoelastic properties of the hybrid films were studied for their glass transition temperature (Tg) and storage modulus by dynamical mechanical thermal analysis (DMTA). A higher shift in glass transition temperature was obtained by chemically binding the aramid copolymer chains on the functionalized Gr sheets. The increase in tensile strength and modulus at various loadings of GrO are compared with the composites using pristine Gr. The effect of interfacial interactions between the matrix chains and the reinforcement on the properties of these hybrids have been explained. Full article
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10 pages, 2320 KiB  
Article
Preparation and Thermoelectric Properties of Semiconducting Single-Walled Carbon Nanotubes/Regioregular Poly(3-dodecylthiophene) Composite Films
Polymers 2020, 12(11), 2720; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym12112720 - 17 Nov 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1707
Abstract
Single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) have been widely used as leading additives for improving the thermoelectric properties of organic materials, due to their unique structure and excellent electronic transport properties. However, the as-synthesized SWNTs are mixtures (mix-SWNT) of semiconducting (sc-SWNT) and metallic (met-SWNT) carbon [...] Read more.
Single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) have been widely used as leading additives for improving the thermoelectric properties of organic materials, due to their unique structure and excellent electronic transport properties. However, the as-synthesized SWNTs are mixtures (mix-SWNT) of semiconducting (sc-SWNT) and metallic (met-SWNT) carbon nanotubes. The significantly different surface character and transport behavior of sc-SWNT and met-SWNT frequently raise the difficulty of modifying microstructures, and tuning transport properties of SWNTs/organic composites, when using mix-SWNTs as dispersion phase. Herein, we prepared high quality sc-SWNTs/rr-P3DDT composite film by presorting pure sc-SWNT from the raw mix-SWNTs using regioregular poly(3-dodecylthiophene) (rr-P3DDT). Both the smoothness and compactness of sc-SWNTs/rr-P3DDT are great improved, as compared with the mix-SWNTs/rr-P3DDT films, and the sc-SWNTs are well-dispersed and uniformly wrapped by rr-P3DDT with diameter less than 50 nm. The significantly enhanced Seebeck coefficients and power factors are obtained in the sc-SWNT/rr-P3DDT samples. As the result, the maximum power factor of 60 μW/mK2 in 50 wt% sc-SWNTs sample is 70% higher than that of mix-SWNTs/P3DDT sample. This work reveals the effectiveness of pure semiconductor SWNTs as fillers to optimize the thermoelectric properties of CNT/polymer nano-composites. Full article
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18 pages, 2761 KiB  
Article
Effect of MWCNT Surface Functionalisation and Distribution on Compressive Properties of Kenaf and Hybrid Kenaf/Glass Fibres Reinforced Polymer Composites
Polymers 2020, 12(11), 2522; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym12112522 - 29 Oct 2020
Cited by 20 | Viewed by 2144
Abstract
The aim of this study is to evaluate the effect of surface treated multi wall carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) on compressive properties of the unidirectional (UD) kenaf and hybrid woven glass/UD kenaf fibre reinforced polymer composites. The MWCNTs were first treated using concentrated acid [...] Read more.
The aim of this study is to evaluate the effect of surface treated multi wall carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) on compressive properties of the unidirectional (UD) kenaf and hybrid woven glass/UD kenaf fibre reinforced polymer composites. The MWCNTs were first treated using concentrated acid (a mix of H2SO4 and HNO3) and silane (three-aminoprophyltriethoxysilane) in order to improve the dispersion within the epoxy matrix using a high shear roll milling technique. In this study, nanomodified epoxies were prepared using 0.5, 0.75 and 1.0 wt % of pristine MWCNT (PCNT), acid treated MWCNT (ACNT) and silane treated MWCNT (SCNT). These nanomodified epoxies were then used for the fabrication of kenaf and hybrid composites using combination of filament winding and resin impregnation. The uniaxial compression test was conducted using a universal testing machine according to the ASTM D3410 standard. The morphology of fractured samples was observed and analysed using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) in order to evaluate the failure behaviour and mechanisms involved during compression. It was found that the addition of treated MWCNT (ACNT and SCNT) improved the compressive properties of kenaf and hybrid composites as compared to those of untreated-MWCNT (PCNT). The addition of 1.0 wt % of SCNT exhibited good compressive properties in both kenaf and hybrid composite systems. The compressive modulus and strength increased by 73.25% and 20.15%, respectively, for composites made of 1.0 wt % SCNT and Kenaf (1.0SCNT/K). For the hybrid composites, the compressive modulus and strength increased by 21.18% and 7.73% for composites made of 1.0 wt % SCNT filled G/K composites (1.0SCNT/G/K). Full article
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15 pages, 3448 KiB  
Article
A Stimulus-Responsive Polymer Composite Surface with Magnetic Field-Governed Wetting and Photocatalytic Properties
Polymers 2020, 12(9), 1890; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym12091890 - 21 Aug 2020
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2447
Abstract
With the increasing demand for liquid manipulation and microfluidic techniques, surfaces with real-time tunable wetting properties are becoming the focus of materials science researches. In this study, we present a simple preparation method for a 0.5–4 µm carbonyl iron (carbonyl Fe) loaded polydimethylsiloxane [...] Read more.
With the increasing demand for liquid manipulation and microfluidic techniques, surfaces with real-time tunable wetting properties are becoming the focus of materials science researches. In this study, we present a simple preparation method for a 0.5–4 µm carbonyl iron (carbonyl Fe) loaded polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS)-based magnetic composite coating with magnetic field-tailored wetting properties. Moreover, the embedded 6.3–16.7 wt.% Ag-TiO2 plasmonic photocatalyst (d~50 nm) content provides additional visible light photoreactivity to the external stimuli-responsive composite grass surfaces, while the efficiency of this photocatalytic behavior also turned out to be dependent on the external magnetic field. The inclusion of the photocatalyst introduced hierarchical surface roughness to the micro-grass, resulting in the broadening of the achievable contact and sliding angle ranges. The photocatalyst-infused coatings are also capable of catching and releasing water droplets, which alongside their multifunctional (photocatalytic activity and tunable wetting characteristics) nature makes surfaces of this kind the novel sophisticated tools of liquid manipulation. Full article
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12 pages, 3254 KiB  
Article
Near-Linear Responsive and Wide-Range Pressure and Stretch Sensor Based on Hierarchical Graphene-Based Structures via Solvent-Free Preparation
Polymers 2020, 12(8), 1814; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym12081814 - 13 Aug 2020
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2694
Abstract
Flexible and wearable electronics have huge potential applications in human motion detection, human–computer interaction, and context identification, which have promoted the rapid development of flexible sensors. So far the sensor manufacturing techniques are complex and require a large number of organic solvents, which [...] Read more.
Flexible and wearable electronics have huge potential applications in human motion detection, human–computer interaction, and context identification, which have promoted the rapid development of flexible sensors. So far the sensor manufacturing techniques are complex and require a large number of organic solvents, which are harmful not only to human health but also to the environment. Here, we propose a facile solvent-free preparation toward a flexible pressure and stretch sensor based on a hierarchical layer of graphene nanoplates. The resulting sensor exhibits many merits, including near-linear response, low strain detection limits to 0.1%, large strain gauge factor up to 36.2, and excellent cyclic stability withstanding more than 1000 cycles. Besides, the sensor has an extraordinary pressure range as large as 700 kPa. Compared to most of the reported graphene-based sensors, this work uses a completely environmental-friendly method that does not contain any organic solvents. Moreover, the sensor can practically realize the delicate detection of human body activity, speech recognition, and handwriting recognition, demonstrating a huge potential for wearable sensors. Full article
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15 pages, 6180 KiB  
Article
Influence of Reduced Graphene Oxide on the Electropolymerization of 5-Amino-1-naphthol and the Interaction of 1,4-Phenylene Diisothiocyanate with the Poly(5-Amino-1-naphtol)/Reduced Graphene Oxide Composite
Polymers 2020, 12(6), 1299; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym12061299 - 05 Jun 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2540
Abstract
A new composite base on reduced graphene oxide (RGO) and poly(5-amino-1-naphthol) (P5A1N) was synthesized by the electrochemical polymerization of 5-amino-1-naphthol (5A1N) in the presence of HClO4 and H4SiW12O40 onto the surface of Au electrode covered with the [...] Read more.
A new composite base on reduced graphene oxide (RGO) and poly(5-amino-1-naphthol) (P5A1N) was synthesized by the electrochemical polymerization of 5-amino-1-naphthol (5A1N) in the presence of HClO4 and H4SiW12O40 onto the surface of Au electrode covered with the RGO sheets. The linear dependence of the current densities of the anodic and cathodic peaks with the scan rate of the potential range (0; 0.8) V vs. SCE, reported during electropolymerization of 5A1N, indicates an electron transfer that is controlled by diffusion. A covalent functionalization of the RGO sheets with P5A1N is argued by: (i) the simultaneous disappearance of the IR band at 1584 cm−1 and the appearance of the new IR bands at 812, 976 and 3744 cm−1, and (ii) the appearance of two Raman lines at 738 and 1428 cm−1. An application of the RGO sheets covalently functionalized with P5A1N is demonstrated to support 1,4-phenylene diisothiocyanate (PDITC), a compound used as a cross-linking agent for various biological applications. The chemical adsorption of PDITC onto the RGO sheets covalently functionalized with P5A1N, which involves the appearance of new functional groups of the type thiourea, was proven by Raman scattering and IR spectroscopy. Full article
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