Chemically and Photochemically Crosslinked Networks and Acid-Functionalized Mwcnt Composites

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Virginia Tech


PTMO-urethane and urea diacrylates (UtDA, UrDA) were synthesized from a two-step reactions of bis (4-isocyanatocyclohexyl) methane (HMDI) with either α,Ï -hydroxy-terminated poly (tetramethylene oxide) (PTMO Mn 250, 1000, 2000 and 2900 g/mol) or α,Ï -aminopropyl-terminated PTMO and 2-hydroxyethyl acrylate (HEA). PTMO-based ester precursors (EtDA) were also synthesized from α,Ï -hydroxy-terminated PTMO (Mn 1000 and 2000 g/mol). Two bis acetoacetates were synthesized from acetoacetylation of 1,4-butanediol and 250 g/mol hydroxy-terminated PTMO with tert-butyl acetoacetate. ¹H NMR spectroscopy confirmed the structure and average molecular weights (Mn)of diacrylates. Mn of these precursors were in the range of 950 to 3670 g/mol by ¹H NMR. The rheological properties of diacrylates were studied and activation energies for flow were calculated. Activation energies increased with increasing Mn and hydrogen-bond segment content. Michael carbon addition was employed to covalently crosslink the precursors resulting in networks with gel fractions better than 90%. DSC and DMA experiments revealed that networks had a broad distribution of glass transition temperatures depending on Mn and degree of hydrogen bonding present in the diacrylates. Their Tg's varied from -61 ºC to 63 ºC depending on the crosslinking density and hydrogen-bonding segment content. TGA revealed that UtDA and UrDA networks had an improved thermal stability compared to their EtDA counterparts. Tensile properties showed a variation depending on the structure and Mn of diacrylate and BisAcAc precursors. The storage moduli of networks precursor change from 25.3 MPa to 2.0 MPa with increasing Mn of the urethane diacrylate Elongation at break increased from 255% to 755 % for the same networks. The Young's moduli increased from 3.27 MPa for EtDA 2000 to 311.1 MPa for UrDA 2000 which was attributed to increasing degree of hydrogen-bonding.

Acid functionalization of C70 P Baytubes multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWCNT) generated acid-functionalized nanotubes (MWCNT-COOH). Suspension of MWCNT-COOH in organic solvents (chloroform, toluene, THF, DMF and 2-propanol) were prepared. DLS indicated average particle diameters of MWCNT-COOH in DMF and in 2-propanol were 139 nm and 162 nm respectively. FESEM of suspensions revealed aggregate free dispersion of MWCNT-COOH in DMF and 2-propanol. MWCNT-COOH containing composite networks were prepared. FESEM images of fracture surfaces of UtDA showed MWCNT-COOH were well-dispersed in the composites. DMA showed an increase in the rubbery plateau modulus which correlated with the MWCNT-COOH content in the networks. Tensile testing also revealed a relationship between MWCNT-COOH content and young's moduli and strain at break of networks. Storage moduli of networks increased from 25 MPa to 211 MPa with increasing MWCNT-COOH content whereas elongation at break decreased from 255 % to 146 %.

UtDAs and pentaerythritol tetraacrylate (PETA) were crosslinked under UV radiation (6 passes, 1.42 ± 0.05 W.cm2 for each pass) in the presence of 2,2-dimethoxy-2-phenylacetophenone (DMPA) (1 wt. % of the mixture) UV initiator. DMA demonstrated the presence of broad glass transition regions with a range of Tg's which varied from -60 °C to -30°C. Tensile testing also revealed the relationship between Young's moduli, strain at break and the molecular weight of the diacrylates. The increasing molecular weight of urethane diacrylate precursors caused a drop in the storage moduli of networks from 15.8 MPa to 1.4 MPa and an increase in elongation at break from 76 % to 132 %.



Michael carbon addition, urethane H-bonding, Telechelic, multiwalled carbon nanotubes, urethane composites, UV curing, thermo-mechanical property