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Home  > Raw materials & technologies  > Raw materials  > Coatings binders  > Grafted polymer chains bring conductivity

Tuesday, 17 September 2019
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Raw materials & technologies, Raw materials, Coatings binders

Grafted polymer chains bring conductivity

Tuesday, 9 October 2012

The functionalisation of polymers is one way to gain conductive coatings. Latest research presents a kind of transplantation which leads to electrically conductive nanocomposites.

With reversible addition fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerisation the polymers got conductive

Source: Demarco/Fotolia

With reversible addition fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerisation the polymers got conductive

Source: Demarco/Fotolia

Researchers from Qingdao University,  China and Deakin University, Australia, prepared graphene–polymer composites of

  • positive-charged poly-dimethyl aminoethyl acrylate,
  • negative-charged poly-acrylic acid,
  • and neutral polystyrene.

The called the methodology "graft from” using reversible addition fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerisation. They modified a pyrene functional RAFT agent (PFRA) graphene precursor.

Proofing the right attachement

Fluorescence spectroscopy and attenuated total reflection infrared (ATR-IR) evidenced that the PFRA was attached on the graphene basal planes by π–π stacking interactions, which is strong enough to anti-dissociation in the polymerisation mixture up to 80 °C.Atomic force microscopy (AFM) revealed that the thickness of a graphene–polymer sheet was about 4.0 nm.

Random copolymers and longer chains influence the results badly

Graphene composites of different polymers with the same polymerisation degree exhibited similar conductivity. Jingquan Liu and the co-workers however found out, that when the polymer chain was designed as random copolymer the conductivity was significantly decreased. They observed furthermore that the longer the grafted polymer chains the lower the conductivity.  ATR-IR spectroscopy and thermogravimetric analysis were also performed to characterize the as-prepared composites.This article was publised by the Journal of Polymer Science Part A: Polymer Chemistry, 2012

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