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Synergistic effects of oxidized CNTs and reactive oligomer on the fracture toughness and mechanical properties of epoxy

Elsevier Ltd
DOI: 10.1016/j.compositesa.2013.02.011
  • A. Thermosetting Resin
  • A. Nano-Structures
  • B. Fracture Toughness
  • B. Mechanical Properties


Abstract The soft modifiers added to improve the fracture toughness of epoxies generally deteriorate their mechanical properties. Hence, oxidized multi-walled carbon nanotubes (O-CNTs) were added to the epoxy modified with reactive oligomer. The NCO terminated reactive oligomer acts as a cross-linker between the O-CNTs and the OH groups of the epoxies. The impact strengths of the 15wt.% oligomer modified epoxy containing 0.5wt.% of O-CNTs at room temperature (RT) and cryogenic temperature (CT) are enhanced by 23.6% and 69.5% compared to that of the unmodified epoxy. In addition to increasing fracture toughness, the tensile strength (TS) of the modified epoxy/O-CNTs at CT is found to be 91.7MPa, which is comparable to that of the unmodified epoxy (92.1MPa). Hence, the attachment of O-CNTs to the reactive oligomer modified epoxy can be an efficient approach to toughen epoxy resins without compromising their tensile properties.

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