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Title: Crazing of nanocomposites with polymer-tethered nanoparticles

The crazing behavior of polymer nanocomposites formed by blending polymer grafted nanoparticles with an entangled polymer melt is studied by molecular dynamics simulations. We focus on the three key differences in the crazing behavior of a composite relative to the pure homopolymer matrix, namely, a lower yield stress, a smaller extension ratio, and a grafted chain length dependent failure stress. The yield behavior is found to be mostly controlled by the local nanoparticle-grafted polymer interfacial energy, with the grafted polymer-polymer matrix interfacial structure being of little to no relevance. Increasing the attraction between nanoparticle core and the grafted polymer inhibits void nucleation and leads to a higher yield stress. In the craze growth regime, the presence of “grafted chain” sections of ≈100 monomers alters the mechanical response of composite samples, giving rise to smaller extension ratios and higher drawing stresses than for the homopolymer matrix. As a result, the dominant failure mechanism of composite samples depends strongly on the length of the grafted chains, with disentanglement being the dominant mechanism for short chains, while bond breaking is the failure mode for chain lengths >10N e, where N e is the entanglement length.
 [1] ;  [2] ;  [3] ;  [4] ; ORCiD logo [5]
  1. Columbia Univ., New York, NY (United States); Mississippi State Univ., Starkville, MS (United States)
  2. Columbia Univ., New York, NY (United States)
  3. Univ. of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC (United States)
  4. Johns Hopkins Univ., Baltimore, MD (United States)
  5. Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)
Publication Date:
Report Number(s):
Journal ID: ISSN 0021-9606; JCPSA6; 643404
Grant/Contract Number:
AC04-94AL85000; AC02-05CH11231
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Journal of Chemical Physics
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 145; Journal Issue: 9; Journal ID: ISSN 0021-9606
American Institute of Physics (AIP)
Research Org:
Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)
Country of Publication:
United States
36 MATERIALS SCIENCE; polymers; crazing; bond cleavage; nanocomposites; nucleation
OSTI Identifier:
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1321036