Toughening linear low-density polyethylene with halloysite nanotubes

Diego Pedrazzoli, Alessandro Pegoretti, Ralf Thomann, János Kristõf, Jõzsef Karger-Kocsis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

23 Citations (Scopus)


Linear low-density polyethylene (LLDPE)-based composites were prepared through melt compounding and hot pressing using both untreated and treated halloysite nanotubes (HNT) up to filler contents of 8 wt% to assess the role of the filler exfoliation and surface treatment on the thermal, mechanical, and rheological properties of the resulting composites. The addition of treated nanoparticles resulted in a better dispersion of the filler within the matrix, as confirmed by observations conducted at scanning and transmission electron microscopies. A decrease in both complex viscosity and shear storage modulus was recorded for all LLDPE-HNT nanocomposites in the molten state. Differential scanning calorimetry analysis evidenced that HNT addition produced an increase of the crystallization peak temperature, while thermogravimetric analysis showed a remarkable improvement of the thermal stability with the nanofiller content. The addition of treated HNT nanoparticles induced better improvements in elastic modulus and tensile properties at break without significant loss in ductility. The fracture toughness, evaluated by the essential work of fracture approach, showed remarkable improvements (up to a factor of 2) with addition of treated HNT. Conversely, incorporation of untreated HNT produced an adverse effect on the fracture toughness when considering the nanocomposite filled with 8 wt% HNT. Both creep tests and dynamic mechanical analyses showed an overall enhancement of the viscoelastic properties due to addition of HNT, revealing higher improvements in nanocomposites added with treated HNT. POLYM. COMPOS., 36:869-883, 2015.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)869-883
Number of pages15
JournalPolymer Composites
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 1 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Materials Chemistry

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