Confirmation of a Nanohybrid Shish-Kebab (NHSK) Structure in Composites of PET and MWCNTs

Heeley, Ellen L.; Hughes, Darren J.; Crabb, Eleanor M.; Bowen, James; Bikondoa, Oier; Mayoral, Beatriz and McNally, Tony (2017). Confirmation of a Nanohybrid Shish-Kebab (NHSK) Structure in Composites of PET and MWCNTs. Journal of Polymer Science. Part B: Polymer Physics, 55(2) pp. 132–137.



Here, the confirmation of an oriented nanohybrid shish-kebab (NHSK) crystalline structure in a series of composites of poly(ethylene terephthalate) (PET) and multiwall carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) is reported. The combined use of small- and wide-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS/WAXS) and thermal analysis has been used to investigate the morphology development in PET-MWCNT nanocomposites under hot isothermal crystallization conditions. The MWCNTs act as both heterogeneous nucleating agents and surfaces (oriented shish structures) for the epitaxial growth of PET crystallites (kebabs) giving an oriented crystalline morphology. In contrast, the PET homopolymer does not show any residual oriented crystalline morphology during isothermal crystallization but gave a sporadic nucleation of a classic unoriented lamellar structure with slower crystallization kinetics. The results provide a valuable insight into the role of MWCNTs as nanoparticulate fillers in the morphology development and subsequent modification of physical properties in engineering polymers.

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