New organically-modified clays containing a carbazole unit were prepared and the number of long alkyl chains on the surfactant was varied. The clay was used to prepare polystyrene nanocomposites by both bulk polymerization and melt blending. The dispersion of these clays in the polymer matrix was evaluated using X-ray diffraction (XRD) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The thermal stability of the clays and the nanocomposites were analyzed by thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) while the fire properties were evaluated by cone calorimetry. If more than two alkyl chains were present, the gallery spacing is apparently overcrowded, leading to poor dispersion. Bulk polymerization gave nanocomposites with better dispersion and reduced flammability when compared to the melt blending process.
Chigwada, Grace; Jiang, David D.; and Wilkie, Charles A., "Polystyrene Nanocomposites based on Carbazole-Containing Surfactants" (2005). Chemistry Faculty Research and Publications. 117.
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Accepted version. Thermochimica Acta, Volume 436, Issues 1-2, pp 113-121 (October, 2005). DOI: © 2005 Elsevier B.V. Used with permission.