Journal of Materials Science

, Volume 41, Issue 8, pp 2291–2300 | Cite as

Mechanical properties of talc- and CaCO3-reinforced high-crystallinity polypropylene composites

  • J.-I. Weon
  • H.-J. Sue


Toughening mechanisms and mechanical properties of two high-crystallinity polypropylene (hcPP)-based composite systems, hcPP/talc and hcPP/CaCO3, are investigated. Significant improvement in tensile modulus is observed in the PP/talc composite, but only a moderate improvement is found for hcPP/CaCO3. The introduction of CaCO3 nanoparticles to hcPP helps nucleate a measurable amount of β-phase crystals and results in a significant drop in crystallization temperature, suggesting a possible retardation of hcPP crystallization. In addition, the hcPP/CaCO3 nanocomposite shows more pronounced damping characteristics than that of hcPP/talc, throughout the temperature range studied. A detailed investigation of fracture mechanisms suggests that well-dispersed, highly oriented talc particles cause embrittlement of hcPP. Only when the crack extends toward the edges of the specimen will the crack deflection/bifurcation and microcracking mechanisms initiate. In the case of hcPP/CaCO3, the CaCO3 nanoparticles help trigger massive crazing and shear yielding if the testing speed is in quasi-static. The presence of β-phase crystals around the CaCO3 particles could facilitate the formation of crazes throughout the hcPP matrix. Approaches for toughening hcPP are discussed.


Polymer Mechanical Property Crystallization Polypropylene Fracture Mechanism 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Springer Science + Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Polymer Technology Center, Department of Mechanical EngineeringTexas A & M UniversityCollege StationUSA

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