Thermal behaviors and mechanical properties of halloysite nanotube-reinforced poly(lactic acid) nanocomposites
Poly(lactic acid)/halloysite nanotubes (PLA/HNTs) nanocomposites were prepared using melt compounding followed by compression molding. N,N′-ethylenebis(stearamide) (EBS) was used to improve the dispersion of HNTs and toughen the PLA nanocomposites. The thermal properties of PLA/HNTs nanocomposites were assessed by using differential scanning calorimeter and thermogravimetric analyzer (TG). The TG measurements were performed at both nitrogen and oxygen atmosphere. The mechanical properties of PLA/HNTs were characterized through tensile and impact tests. The morphological properties of the PLA/HNTs nanocomposites were investigated by using transmission electron microscopy and field emission scanning electron microscopy. The degree of crystallinity of PLA nanocomposites was increased slightly by the addition of EBS. The decomposition process of PLA/HNTs depends on the atmosphere reaction during TG test as well as the amount of EBS. The best mechanical properties of PLA/HNTs nanocomposites expressed by the impact strength and elongation at break were achieved by the addition of 5 mass% of EBS.
KeywordsPoly(lactic acid) Halloysite Dispersant Thermal properties
This study was funded by Universiti Sains Malaysia Research University Grant (Grant Number 814070; Grant Number 814199), USM Incentive Grant (Grant Number 8021013), and Ministry of Higher Education Malaysia MyPHD Scholarship Programme.
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