Unexpected strength and toughness reinforcement of the injection-molded isotactic polypropylene parts with oriented β-crystals

Yanhui Chen*, Xu Bo, Song Yang, Haoqing Yang, Tom Lawson, Zhiqiang Wu, Qiuyu Zhang, Zhongming Li

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In this work, three profiles of injection temperatures were adopted to tune the morphology of a β-nucleating agent and further affect the resulting β-crystal morphology of isotactic polypropylene (iPP) during an injection molding process. When the middle injection temperature profile was adopted (the maximum temperature was 220 °C), abundant oriented β-crystals with the c-axis perpendicular to the injection direction were presented throughout the whole injection-molded part, and their existence and distribution were confirmed by synchrotron wide-angle X-ray diffraction (WAXD) and small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS). These oriented β-crystals give rise to simultaneously enhanced tensile and impact strength of the β-nucleated iPP part. In a novel outcome, this work transformed the usually mechanically weak and soft component (i.e., the β-crystals) of iPP into one that added to its self-reinforcement and overall strength. This finding provides a new idea that a soft structure can be utilized to reinforce itself.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)14252-14262
Number of pages11
JournalIndustrial and Engineering Chemistry Research
Volume56
Issue number48
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 6 Dec 2017

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