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Materials 2010, 3(3), 1709-1745; doi:10.3390/ma3031709

Imogolite Reinforced Nanocomposites: Multifaceted Green Materials

Graduate School of Engineering, Kyushu University, 744 Mootoka, Nishi-ku, Fukuoka 819-0395, Japan
Kitakyushu College of Technology, 5-20-1 Shii, Kokuraminami, Kitakyusyu, Fukuoka 802-0985, Japan
Institute for Materials Chemistry and Engineering, Kyushu University, 744 Mootoka, Nishi-ku, Fukuoka 819-0395, Japan
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 30 December 2009 / Revised: 2 February 2010 / Accepted: 1 March 2010 / Published: 9 March 2010
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanocomposites of Polymers and Inorganic Particles)


This paper presents an overview on recent developments of imogolite reinforced nanocomposites, including fundamental structure, synthesis/purification of imogolite, physicochemical properties of nanocomposites and potential applications in industry. The naturally derived nanotubular material of imogolite represents a distinctive class of nanofiller for industrially significant polymer. The incompatibility between the surface properties of inorganic nanofiller and organic matrix has prompted the need to surface modify the imogolite. Early problems in increasing the binding properties of surface modifier to imogolite have been overcome by using a phosphonic acid group. Different approaches have been used to gain better control over the dispersal of nanofiller and to further improve the physicochemical properties of nanocomposites. Among these, polymer grafting, in situ synthesis of imogolite in polymer matrix, and spin-assembly are some of the promising methods that will be described herein. This imogolite reinforced nanocomposite of enhanced optical and mechanical properties, and with unique biological and electronic properties, is expected to become an important category of hybrid material that shows potential for industrial applications.
Keywords: imogolite; nanotube; nanocomposite; surface modification; in situ synthesis; spin-assembly imogolite; nanotube; nanocomposite; surface modification; in situ synthesis; spin-assembly
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Yah, W.O.; Yamamoto, K.; Jiravanichanun, N.; Otsuka, H.; Takahara, A. Imogolite Reinforced Nanocomposites: Multifaceted Green Materials. Materials 2010, 3, 1709-1745.

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