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Journal of Nanotechnology
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 138457, 10 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/138457
Research Article

LDPE/HDPE/Clay Nanocomposites: Effects of Compatibilizer on the Structure and Dielectric Response

Département de Génie Mécanique, École de Technologie Supérieure (ETS), 1100 Notre-Dame Ouest, Montréal, QC, Canada H3C 1K3

Received 26 July 2013; Accepted 16 August 2013

Academic Editor: John Zhanhu Guo

Copyright © 2013 B. Zazoum et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

PE/clay nanocomposites were prepared by mixing a commercially available premixed polyethylene/O-MMT masterbatch into a polyethylene blend matrix containing 80 wt% low-density polyethylene and 20 wt% high-density polyethylene with and without anhydride modified polyethylene (PE-MA) as the compatibilizer using a corotating twin-screw extruder. In this study, the effect of nanoclay and compatibilizer on the structure and dielectric response of PE/clay nanocomposites has been investigated. The microstructure of PE/clay nanocomposites was characterized using wide-angle X-ray diffraction (WAXD) and a scanning electron microscope (SEM). Thermal properties were examined using differential scanning calorimetry (DSC). The dielectric response of neat PE was compared with that of PE/clay nanocomposite with and without the compatibilizer. The XRD and SEM results showed that the PE/O-MMT nanocomposite with the PE-MA compatibilizer was better dispersed. In the nanocomposite materials, two relaxation modes are detected in the dielectric losses. The first relaxation is due to a Maxwell-Wagner-Sillars interfacial polarization, and the second relaxation can be related to dipolar polarization. A relationship between the degree of dispersion and the relaxation rate of Maxwell-Wagner-Sillars was found and discussed.