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Polymer Degradation and Stability

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Graphite oxide was prepared and modified with several ammonium salts and these modified graphite oxides were used to prepare nanocomposites with polystyrene by in situ polymerization of styrene monomer and by melt blending with polystyrene. Nanocomposites were characterized by X-ray diffraction, cone calorimetry, thermogravimetric analysis and the evaluation of mechanical properties. Nanocomposites are formed by in situ polymerization but not by melt blending; the graphite oxide undergoes thermal degradation at the temperature of melt blending so nanocomposite formation would be unlikely. Mechanical properties of the melt blended nanocomposites are improved relative to the virgin polystyrene while those prepared by in situ polymerization are decreased, except in the case of Young's Modulus, where melt blended and in situ polymerized materials show similar results.


Accepted version. Polymer Degradation and Stability, Vol. 84, No. 2 (May 2004): 215-226. DOI. © 2004 Elsevier Ltd. Used with permission.

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