Investigation on the Thermal Degradation Kinetics of Polypropylene/Organically Modified Montmorillonite Nanocomposites with Different Levels of Compatibilizer

Paramsamy Kannan Vimalathithan, Claudia Barile, Caterina Casavola, Chinnaswamy Thangavel Vijayakumar, Sundaresan Arunachalam, Markus Battisti, Walter Friesenbichler

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    Polypropylene/organically modified montmorillonite (OMMT) nanocomposites are prepared with different levels of compatibilizer (maleic anhydride functionalized polypropylene) and OMMT. A specially designed polymer nanocomposite injection molding compounder with a hyperbolic nozzle is used to prepare the nanocomposites. The thermal kinetic parameters, the activation energy, pre‐exponential factor, and the reaction model are estimated using isoconversional methods. The activation energy of virgin polypropylene is slightly higher than the polypropylene/OMMT nanocomposites. However, the presence of the compatibilizer is the vital reason for the lower activation energy in the polypropylene/OMMT nanocomposites. The reaction model explains the complexity of the reaction in the presence of OMMT and its influence on the accelerated charring in the later stages of degradation. The optimum working temperature of the prepared polypropylene/clay nanocomposites is significantly higher thus proving that OMMT improves the thermal stability of the nanocomposites. The polypropylene with 5% OMMT and 10% compatibilizer in its weight proportion has the optimum working temperature of 198 °C for 20 000 h before losing its integrity.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article number1800260
    Number of pages8
    JournalMacromolecular materials and engineering
    Issue numberDecember
    Publication statusPublished - 9 Oct 2018

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