Comparison of the effect of carbon, halloysite and titania nanotubes on the mechanical and thermal properties of LDPE based nanocomposite films
In this study, titania nanotubes (TNTs) were prepared by hydrothermal method with the aim to compare the properties of these one-dimensional tubular nanostructures' reinforced nanocomposites with the carbon and halloysite nanotubes' (CNTs and HNTs, respectively) reinforced nanocomposites. Low density polyethylene (LDPE) was used as the matrix material. The prepared nanocomposites were characterized and compared by means of their morphological, mechanical and thermal properties. SEM results showed enhanced interfacial interaction and better dispersion of TNTs and HNTs into LDPE with the incorporation of a MAPE compatibilizer, however, these interactions seem to be absent between CNTs and LDPE, and the CNTs remained agglomerated. Contact angle measurements revealed that CNT filled nanocomposites are more hydrophilic than HNT composites, and less than TNT composites. CNTs provided better tensile strength and Young's modulus than HNT and TNT nanocomposites, a 42% increase in tensile strength and Young's modulus is achieved compared to LDPE. Tear strength improvement was noticed in the TNT composites with a value of 35.4 N�mm? 1, compared to CNT composites with a value of 25.5 N�mm? 1�s? 1. All the prepared nanocomposites are more thermally stable than neat LDPE and the best improvement in thermal stability was observed for CNT reinforced nanocomposites. CNTs depicted the best improvement in tensile and thermal properties and the MAPE compatibilizer effectiveness regarding morphological, mechanical and thermal properties was only observed for TNT and HNT systems. 2017 Elsevier B.V.