Fracture behaviour of poly[ethylene–(vinyl alcohol)]/organo-clay composites
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BACKGROUND: Ethylene–(vinyl alcohol) (EVOH) copolymer/organo-modified montmorillonite (OMMT) composites were investigated. Composites with two different percentages by weight of OMMT were prepared using a melt-extrusion procedure in a twin-screw extruder, using EVOH asmatrix. Filmsmade of EVOH and EVOH/OMMT composites were prepared in a cast-film extrusion line. RESULTS: The mechanical properties were evaluated by tensile tests and the fracture behaviour was analysed using the essential-work-of-fracture (EWF) method. Fracture characterization was carried out for the two main processing directions: melt flow direction and transverse direction. Fractographic observations were made using scanning electron microscopy. CONCLUSION: The tensile test results indicated good compatibility between EVOH and OMMT. In addition, the fracture tests showed the influence of the clay particle arrangement on the fracture behaviour, showing an increase in the specific essential work of fracture, we, which was attributed to the EVOH–OMMT interaction. The plastic term, βwp, showed different trends depending on the test direction, explained by the size of the plastic zone and the restrictions to the EVOH plastic flow promoted by the clay particles. In this sense, the EWF method is shown to be a very useful tool for the analysis of structure–property relationships in polymer–organo-clay composites.
CitationMaspoch, M. [et al.]. Fracture behaviour of poly[ethylene–(vinyl alcohol)]/organo-clay composites. "Polymer international", 14 Abril 2009, vol. 58, p. 648-655.
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