Surface modification of polyethylene/graphene composite using corona discharge
Polyethylene/graphene composites are suitable for electromagnetic interference shielding applications and are often fabricated as sandwich structures. However, the hydrophobic character of these composites can lead to delamination. Corona treatment was used to enhance the surface hydrophilicity of composites prepared from linear low-density polyethylene (LLDPE) and graphene nanoplatelets (GNPs) with different content (2, 4, 6, and 8 wt.%). This enhancement of wettability also led to good adhesion properties. The presence of GNPs in LLDPE had a positive effect on the surface properties after corona treatment. The surface free energy of the LLDPE/GNP composites increased by almost 64.6% for 2 wt.% of GNPs in the LLDPE/GNP composite, while the surface free energy of neat LLDPE increased by only 38.1%. The best improvement in adhesion properties after corona treatment was observed for 2 wt.% of GNPs in the LLDPE/GNP composite, while peel resistance increased by 137.9%. Various analytical techniques and methods proved that the changes in the surface morphology and chemical composition of the LLDPE/GNP composite after this treatment resulted in an improvement of adhesion. - 2018 IOP Publishing Ltd.