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Journal of Nanomaterials
Volume 2007 (2007), Article ID 52729, 6 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2007/52729
Research Article

Effect of Carbon Nanofiber Heat Treatment on Physical Properties of Polymeric Nanocomposites—Part I

University of Dayton, 300 College Park, Dayton 45469, OH, USA

Received 22 March 2007; Accepted 2 June 2007

Academic Editor: Donglu Shi

Copyright © 2007 Khalid Lafdi 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

The definition of a nanocomposite material has broadened significantly to encompass a large variety of systems made of dissimilar components and mixed at the nanometer scale. The properties of nanocomposite materials also depend on the morphology, crystallinity, and interfacial characteristics of the individual constituents. In the current work, vapor-grown carbon nanofibers were subjected to varying heat-treatment temperatures. The strength of adhesion between the nanofiber and an epoxy (thermoset) matrix was characterized by the flexural strength and modulus. Heat treatment to 1800C demonstrated maximum improvement in mechanical properties over that of the neat resin, while heat-treatment to higher temperatures demonstrated a slight decrease in mechanical properties likely due to the elimination of potential bonding sites caused by the elimination of the truncated edges of the graphene layers. Both the electrical and thermal properties of the resulting nanocomposites increased in conjunction with the increasing heat-treatment temperature.