Comparison of covalently and noncovalently functionalized carbon nanotubes in epoxy
Carbon nanotubes typically require the use of a dispersing or stabilizing agent to prevent significant aggregation during incorporation into a polymer matrix. These additives must be strongly associated, either covalently or physically, to achieve their purpose. In this study, multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWNTs) were dispersed into an epoxy matrix using polyethylenimine (PEI) as a dispersant that was either covalently attached to the nanotubes or physically mixed to result in only noncovalent interaction. Epoxy composites containing covalently modified MWNTs exhibited greater storage modulus and reduced electrical conductivity.
Liu, L; Etika, KC; Liao, KS; Hess, LA; Bergbreiter, DE; Grunlan, JC; Macromol. Rapid Commun., 2009, 30 (8), 627-632.