Quantitative Analysis of Cloisite 93a Infused into Linear Low-Density Polyethylene and Maleated Linear Low-Density Polyethylene in a Supercritical Carbon Dioxide Medium


Linear low-density polyethylene (LLDPE) is a widely used polymer that can benefit from the enhanced barrier, thermal, and mechanical properties offered by nanoclay fillers. However, optimal property enhancement requires complete exfoliation and uniform dispersion, both of which are difficult to achieve with nanoclay fillers. Supercritical carbon dioxide (scCO2) processing is an inexpensive and environmentally benign method for exfoliating and dispersing clays into polymers. in a scCO2 medium under controlled environments, the organically modified clay Cloisite 93A was infused into LLDPE and maleated linear low-density polyethylene (LLDPE-g-MA). Upon microscopic inspection, it was evident that clay infusion was achieved near the surface of the polymer pellet, but no clay found its way into the interior of the pellet. in this article, we describe an analytical method for determining the amount of nanoclay infused into a polymer matrix via Fourier transform infrared analysis. Using this method, we determined the weight percentage of Cloisite 93A infused into LLDPE and LLDPE-g-MA.


Chemical and Biochemical Engineering

Keywords and Phrases

Compatibilization; FT-IR; Nanocomposites; Organoclay; Polyethylene

Document Type

Article - Journal

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