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Open AccessArticle

Fabrication, Characterization, and Properties of Poly (Ethylene-Co-Vinyl Acetate) Composite Thin Films Doped with Piezoelectric Nanofillers

The BioRobotics Institute, Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna, 56025 Pontedera (PI), Italy
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Nanomaterials 2019, 9(8), 1182; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9081182
Received: 11 July 2019 / Revised: 6 August 2019 / Accepted: 14 August 2019 / Published: 20 August 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Synthesis and Modification of Nanostructured Thin Films)
Ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) is a copolymer comprehending the semi-crystalline polyethylene and amorphous vinyl acetate phases, which potentially allow the fabrication of tunable materials. This paper aims at describing the fabrication and characterization of nanocomposite thin films made of polyethylene vinyl acetate, at different polymer concentration and vinyl acetate content, doped with piezoelectric nanomaterials, namely zinc oxide and barium titanate. These membranes are prepared by solvent casting, achieving a thickness in the order of 100–200 µm. The nanocomposites are characterized in terms of morphological, mechanical, and chemical properties. Analysis of the nanocomposites shows the nanofillers to be homogeneously dispersed in EVA matrix at different vinyl acetate content. Their influence is also noted in the mechanical behavior of thin films, which elastic modulus ranged from about 2 to 25 MPa, while keeping an elongation break from 600% to 1500% and tensile strength from 2 up to 13 MPa. At the same time, doped nanocomposite materials increase their crystallinity degree than the bare ones. The radiopacity provided by the addition of the dopant agents is proven. Finally, the direct piezoelectricity of nanocomposites membranes is demonstrated, showing higher voltage outputs (up to 2.5 V) for stiffer doped matrices. These results show the potentialities provided by the addition of piezoelectric nanomaterials towards mechanical reinforcement of EVA-based matrices while introducing radiopaque properties and responsiveness to mechanical stimuli. View Full-Text
Keywords: nanomaterial; zinc oxide; barium titanate; composite; ethylene vinyl acetate; elastic modulus; toughness; flexural rigidity; radiopacity; piezoelectricity nanomaterial; zinc oxide; barium titanate; composite; ethylene vinyl acetate; elastic modulus; toughness; flexural rigidity; radiopacity; piezoelectricity
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Mariotti, G.; Vannozzi, L. Fabrication, Characterization, and Properties of Poly (Ethylene-Co-Vinyl Acetate) Composite Thin Films Doped with Piezoelectric Nanofillers. Nanomaterials 2019, 9, 1182.

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