Styrenic Nanocomposites Prepared using a Novel Biphenyl-Containing Clay
Polymer Degradation and Stability
Montmorillonite was organically modified using an ammonium salt containing 4-acetylbiphenyl. This clay (BPNC16 clay) was used to prepare polystyrene (PS), acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) and high impact polystyrene (HIPS) nanocomposites. Polystyrene nanocomposites were prepared both by in situ bulk polymerisation and melt blending processes, while the ABS and HIPS nanocomposites were prepared only by melt blending. X-ray diffraction and transmission electron microscopy were used to confirm nanocomposite formation. Thermogravimetric analysis was used to evaluate thermal stability and the flammability properties were evaluated using cone calorimetry. By thermogravimetry, BPNC16 clay was found to show high thermal stability, and by cone calorimetry, a decrease in both the peak heat release rate and the mass loss rate was observed for the nanocomposites.