Surfactant-induced morphology and thermal behavior of polymer layered silicate nanocomposites
S I Marras
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Poly(L-lactic acid) nanocomposites were prepared by the addition of montmorillonite modified with various loadings of hexadecylammonium cation. The influence of alkylammonium on the morphology and surface charge of the clay was investigated by Xray diffraction (XRD) analysis and electrokinetic measurements, respectively. The structural characteristics of the inorganic-organic hybrids were studied by XRD, transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and atomic force microscopy (AFM). Thermal analysis was carried out by thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) under constant nitrogen flow and under air. The results showed that high concentration of surfactant present in the clay greatly increases clay's dispersibility into the matrix and this substantially improves the thermal stability of the pristine polymer.