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Lightweight Poly(ε-Caprolactone) Composites with Surface Modified Hollow Glass Microspheres for Use in Rotational Molding: Thermal, Rheological and Mechanical Properties

1
Istituto per lo Studio delle Macromolecole—CNR, Via A. Corti 12, 20133 Milano, Italy
2
Istituto per lo Studio delle Macromolecole—CNR, Via De Marini 6, 16149 Genova, Italy
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Polymers 2019, 11(4), 624; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym11040624
Received: 11 March 2019 / Revised: 25 March 2019 / Accepted: 1 April 2019 / Published: 4 April 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Eurofillers Polymer Blends)
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Abstract

In this work, novel composites based on poly(ε-caprolactone) (PCL) were prepared and characterized in terms of morphological, thermal, rheological and mechanical properties. Hollow glass microspheres (HGM), alone or surface modified by treatment with (3-aminopropyl)triethoxysilane (APTES) in order to enhance the compatibility between the inorganic particles and the polymer matrix, were used to obtain lightweight composites with improved properties. The silanization treatment implies a good dispersion of filler particles in the matrix and an enhanced filler–polymer adhesion. The addition of HGM to PCL has relevant implications on the rheological and mechanical properties enhancing the stiffness of the material. Furthermore, the presence of HGM strongly interferes with the crystallization behavior and thermo-oxidative degradation of PCL. The increase of PCL crystallization rate was observed as a function of the HGM amount in the composites. Finally, rotational molding tests demonstrated the possibility of successfully producing manufactured goods in PCL and PCL-based composites on both a laboratory and industrial scale. View Full-Text
Keywords: polymer matrix composites; poly(ε-caprolactone); hollow glass microspheres; rotational molding; silanization; morphology; rheological properties; mechanical properties polymer matrix composites; poly(ε-caprolactone); hollow glass microspheres; rotational molding; silanization; morphology; rheological properties; mechanical properties
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Vignali, A.; Iannace, S.; Falcone, G.; Utzeri, R.; Stagnaro, P.; Bertini, F. Lightweight Poly(ε-Caprolactone) Composites with Surface Modified Hollow Glass Microspheres for Use in Rotational Molding: Thermal, Rheological and Mechanical Properties. Polymers 2019, 11, 624.

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