Polymer nanocomposites are defined as polymers in which small amounts of nanometer size fillers are homogeneously dispersed by only several weight percentages. Addition of just a few weight percent of the nano-fillers has profound impact on the physical, chemical, mechanical and electrical properties of polymers. Such change is often favorable for engineering purpose. This nanocomposite technology has emerged from the field of engineering plastics, and potentially expanded its application to structural materials, coatings, and packaging to medicalr r r r rbiomedical products, and electronic and photonic devices. Recently these 'hi-tech' materials with excellent properties have begun to attract research people in the field of dielectrics and electrical insulation. Since new properties are brought about from the interactions of nanofillers with polymer matrices, mesoscopic properties are expected to come out, which would be interesting to both scientists and engineers. Improved characteristics are expected as dielectrics and electrical insulation. Several interesting results to indicate foreseeable future have been revealed, some of which are described on materials and processing in the paper together with basic concepts and future direction.
Dielectric polymer composites with high thermal conductivity are very promising for microelectronic packaging and thermal management application in new energy systems such as solar cells and light emitting diodes (LEDs). However, a well‐known paradox is that conventional composites with high thermal conductivity usually suffer from the high dielectric constant and high dielectric loss, while on the other hand, composite materials with excellent dielectric properties usually possess low thermal conductivity. In this work, an ideal dielectric thermally conductive epoxy nanocomposite is successfully fabricated using polyhedral oligosilsesquioxane (POSS) functionalized boron nitride nanotubes (BNNTs) as fillers. The nanocomposites with 30 wt% fraction of POSS modified BNNTs exhibit much lower dielectric constant, dielectric loss tangent, and coefficient of thermal expansion in comparison with the pure epoxy resin. As an example, below 100 Hz, the dielectric loss of the nanocomposites with 20 and 30 wt% BNNTs is reduced by one order of magnitude in comparison with the pure epoxy resin. Moreover, the nanocomposites show a dramatic thermal conductivity enhancement of 1360% in comparison with the pristine epoxy resin at a BNNT loading fraction of 30 wt%. The merits of the designed composites are suggested to originate from the excellent intrinsic properties of embedded BNNTs, effective surface modification by POSS molecules, and carefully developed composite preparation methods.
The interface between filler and matrix has long been
problem that affects the thermal conductivity of polymer composites.
The effects of the interface on the thermal conductivity of the composite
with low filler loading are well documented, whereas the role of the
interface in highly filled polymer composites is not clear. Here we
report on a systematic study of the effects of interface on the thermal
conductivity of highly filled epoxy composites. Six kinds of surface
treated and as received AlN particles are used as fillers. Three kinds
of treated AlN are functionalized by silanes, i.e., amino, epoxy,
and mercapto group terminated silanes. Others are functionalized by
three kinds of materials, i.e., polyhedral oligomeric silsesquioxane
(POSS), hyperbranched polymer, and graphene oxide (GO). An intensive
study was made to clarify how the variation of the modifier would
affect the microstructure, density, interfacial adhesion, and thus
the final thermal conductivity of the composites. It was found that
the thermal conductivity enhancement of the composites is not only
dependent on the type and physicochemical nature of the modifiers
but also dependent on the filler loading. In addition, some unexpected
results were found in the composites with particle loading higher
than the percolation threshold. For instance, the composites with
AlN treated by the silane uncapable of reacting with the epoxy resin
show the most effective enhancement of the thermal conductivity. Finally,
dielectric spectroscopy was used to evaluate the insulating properties
of the composites. This work sets the way toward the choice of a proper
modifier for enhancing the thermal conductivity of highly filled dielectric
Dielectric polymer composites with high dielectric constants and high thermal conductivity have many potential applications in modern electronic and electrical industry. In this study, three-phase composites comprising poly(vinylidene fluoride) (PVDF), barium titanate (BT) nanoparticles, and β-silicon carbide (β-SiC) whiskers were prepared. The superiority of this method is that, when compared with the two-phase PVDF/BT composites, three-phase composites not only show significantly increased dielectric constants but also have higher thermal conductivity. Our results show that the addition of 17.5 vol % β-SiC whiskers increases the dielectric constants of PVDF/BT nanocomposites from 39 to 325 at 1000 Hz, while the addition of 20.0 vol % β-SiC whiskers increases the thermal conductivity of PVDF/BT nanocomposites from 1.05 to 1.68 W m(-1) K(-1) at 25 °C. PVDF/β-SiC composites were also prepared for comparative research. It was found that PVDF/BT/β-SiC composites show much higher dielectric constants in comparison with the PVDF/β-SiC composites within 17.5 vol % β-SiC. The PVDF/β-SiC composites show dielectric constants comparable to those of the three-phase composites only when the β-SiC volume fraction is 20.0%, whereas the dielectric loss of the PVDF/β-SiC composites was much higher than that of the three-phase composites. The frequency dependence of the dielectric property for the composites was investigated by using broad-band (10(-2)-10(6) Hz) dielectric spectroscopy.
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