Keywords: carbon nanotubes, functionalisation, epoxy composites, n-butyllithium, nanotechnology, mechanical reinforcement, heat diffusion enhancement, polymerisation
Solubility, dispersion and bonding of functionalised carbon nanotubes in epoxy resins
Carbon nanotubes as fillers in an epoxy matrix for mechanical reinforcement and heat diffusion enhancement are tested. We demonstrate a method to covalently graft functional molecules on carbon nanotubes to alter the filler/matrix interface incompatibilities, making the carbon nanotubes become soluble in epoxies and allows better homogenisation of the fillers in the matrix. As a result, the carbon nanotubes will bond to the epoxy matrix during polymerisation, and thus create a better mechanical strength and heat transfer enhancement.