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Article

Non-Isothermal Crystallization Behavior and Thermal Properties of Polyethylene Tuned by Polypropylene and Reinforced with Reduced Graphene Oxide

1
Centre for Biocomposites and Biomaterials Processing, University of Toronto, 33 Willcocks Street, Toronto, ON M5S 3BS, Canada
2
Bahen Centre for Information Technology, University of Toronto, 40 St. George Street, Toronto, ON M5S 2E4, Canada
3
TOTAL American Services Inc., 82 South Street, Hopkinton, MA 01748, USA
4
Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, University of Toronto, 5 King’s College Road, Toronto, ON M5S 3G8, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nanomaterials 2020, 10(8), 1428; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10081428
Received: 12 June 2020 / Revised: 10 July 2020 / Accepted: 19 July 2020 / Published: 22 July 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Polymer Nanocomposites: Synthesis, Characterization and Applications)
This research work is the first to report thermal stability, heat deformation resistance, and crystallization behavior of a Polyethylene (PE)-based biphasic polyolefin system reinforced with Reduced Graphene Oxide (RGO), which was obtained through Graphene Oxide (GO) chemical reduction. Polypropylene (PP) represented the polymeric dispersed phase. A strategic PE/PP/RGO manufacturing procedure was employed to thermodynamically localize RGO at the PE/PP interface, as confirmed by Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM), bringing a uniform micro phase dispersion into the macro phase. In addition, studies of PE non-isothermal crystallization kinetics indicated that the morphology tunable micro phase and the nanolayered RGO promoted a nucleation-controlled PE crystallization, which was supported by Polarized Light Optical Microscopy (PLOM). This, together with fine morphology, justified the remarkable enhancement registered for the ternary system’s thermal stability and heat deformation resistance. Different filler loads were employed, with weight fractions of 2% and 4%. It was observed that the former, being better exfoliated and more homogeneously distributed at the PE/PP interface than the latter, led to a more improved PE crystallization, alongside a greater ternary system’s thermal properties. Moreover, the thermal stability of PE/PP reinforced with 2% of RGO was even higher than that of virgin PP, while their heat deformation resistance values were found to be similar. Therefore, this unique outcome provides industries, such as the energy and automotive sectors, with the opportunity to substitute PP-rich products with those mostly comprised of a cheaper, more abundant, yet performant PE. View Full-Text
Keywords: Reduced Graphene Oxide (RGO); Thermal Gravimetric Analysis (TGA); Heat Deformation Temperature (HDT); Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC); non-isothermal crystallization kinetics Reduced Graphene Oxide (RGO); Thermal Gravimetric Analysis (TGA); Heat Deformation Temperature (HDT); Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC); non-isothermal crystallization kinetics
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MDPI and ACS Style

Graziano, A.; Titton Dias, O.A.; Garcia, C.; Jaffer, S.; Tjong, J.; Sain, M. Non-Isothermal Crystallization Behavior and Thermal Properties of Polyethylene Tuned by Polypropylene and Reinforced with Reduced Graphene Oxide. Nanomaterials 2020, 10, 1428. https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10081428

AMA Style

Graziano A, Titton Dias OA, Garcia C, Jaffer S, Tjong J, Sain M. Non-Isothermal Crystallization Behavior and Thermal Properties of Polyethylene Tuned by Polypropylene and Reinforced with Reduced Graphene Oxide. Nanomaterials. 2020; 10(8):1428. https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10081428

Chicago/Turabian Style

Graziano, Antimo, Otavio A. Titton Dias, Christian Garcia, Shaffiq Jaffer, Jimi Tjong, and Mohini Sain. 2020. "Non-Isothermal Crystallization Behavior and Thermal Properties of Polyethylene Tuned by Polypropylene and Reinforced with Reduced Graphene Oxide" Nanomaterials 10, no. 8: 1428. https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10081428

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