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Efficient stabilization of carbon nanotubes through supramolecular interactions with controlled polymer structures

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Abstract
In the current scientific research on polymers, a huge amount of research is conducted on the use and application of polymer nanocomposites. These are polymers that contain a minor fraction of nanoparticles that are small (nanometer range) in at least one dimension. One particular example of nanoparticles are carbon nanotubes (CNT). By mixing such CNTs within a polymer matrix, improvement of properties can be obtained like a higher strength and heat resistance, or a better electrical conductivity. However, without the addition of a proper stabilizing agent, the carbon nanotubes tend to form a bundle-like arrangement since they are not compatible with the polymer matrix in most cases and as a result the expected improved properties are lost. For that reason, the individual dispersion of nanotubes in the polymer matrix represents the key-step for the production of CNT-based nanocomposites of high performance. One possibility to improve the interaction with the polymer matrix is to surface-functionalize the CNTs with a compatibilizing agent in a covalent way. However, this approach creates structural defects in the conjugated surface of CNTs and, by consequence, deteriorates their mechanical and electrical properties. By contrast, via supramolecular chemistry (non-covalent interactions like π- π stacking, cation- π interaction, amine-aromatic charge transfer), the CNT electronic structure is preserved, and consequently, the original CNT properties remain unchanged. Therefore, such a strategy is preferred to anchor stabilizing agents onto CNTs. Recently, an imidazolium unit has been investigated as a supramolecular anchoring moiety for CNTs.1 L-lactide was polymerized via ring opening polymerization starting from a hydroxy-containing imidazolium unit. The imidazolium-functionalized PLLA has been used as an efficient stabilizer for CNTs both in solution and in PLLA matrix. The aim of this project was to extend this strategy towards poly(n-butyl acrylate) (as a model for poly(acrylates)) and poly(styrene). For that reason, (co)polymers based on n-butyl acrylate and styrene that were end-functionalized by an imidazolium ring had to be synthesized. One of the easiest ways to achieve this objective was to make use of atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) starting from a bromine containing imidazolium initiator. Different imidazolium-containing homopolymers with various molecular weights were obtained in a controlled way. It was observed that these polymers, both poly(n-butyl acrylate) and poly(styrene), could efficiently disperse CNTs in solution. Next, also some imidazolium-containing copolymers based on n-butyl acrylate and styrene have been synthesized via ATRP and successfully tested as a stabilizer for CNTs. The dispersion ability of the imidazolium-containing (co)polymers has been confirmed via AFM and TEM analyses. 1 Meyer, F.; Raquez, J. M.; Coulembier, O.; De Winter, J.; Gerbaux, P.; Dubois, P. Chemical Communications 2010, 46, (30), 5527-5529.
Keywords
Carbon nanotube, Atom Transfer Radical Polymerization (ATRP), dispersion, supramolecular interaction

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MLA
Dervaux, Bart, Franck Meyer, Jean-Marie Raquez, et al. “Efficient Stabilization of Carbon Nanotubes Through Supramolecular Interactions with Controlled Polymer Structures.” EUROFILLERS 2011, Book of Abstracts. Dresden, Germany: Leibniz-Institut fur Polymerforschung Dresden, 2011. 184–184. Print.
APA
Dervaux, B., Meyer, F., Raquez, J.-M., Coulembier, O., Dubois, P., & Du Prez, F. (2011). Efficient stabilization of carbon nanotubes through supramolecular interactions with controlled polymer structures. EUROFILLERS 2011, Book of abstracts (pp. 184–184). Presented at the 9th EUROFILLERS international conference (EUROFILLERS) 2011, Dresden, Germany: Leibniz-Institut fur Polymerforschung Dresden.
Chicago author-date
Dervaux, Bart, Franck Meyer, Jean-Marie Raquez, Olivier Coulembier, Philipper Dubois, and Filip Du Prez. 2011. “Efficient Stabilization of Carbon Nanotubes Through Supramolecular Interactions with Controlled Polymer Structures.” In EUROFILLERS 2011, Book of Abstracts, 184–184. Dresden, Germany: Leibniz-Institut fur Polymerforschung Dresden.
Chicago author-date (all authors)
Dervaux, Bart, Franck Meyer, Jean-Marie Raquez, Olivier Coulembier, Philipper Dubois, and Filip Du Prez. 2011. “Efficient Stabilization of Carbon Nanotubes Through Supramolecular Interactions with Controlled Polymer Structures.” In EUROFILLERS 2011, Book of Abstracts, 184–184. Dresden, Germany: Leibniz-Institut fur Polymerforschung Dresden.
Vancouver
1.
Dervaux B, Meyer F, Raquez J-M, Coulembier O, Dubois P, Du Prez F. Efficient stabilization of carbon nanotubes through supramolecular interactions with controlled polymer structures. EUROFILLERS 2011, Book of abstracts. Dresden, Germany: Leibniz-Institut fur Polymerforschung Dresden; 2011. p. 184–184.
IEEE
[1]
B. Dervaux, F. Meyer, J.-M. Raquez, O. Coulembier, P. Dubois, and F. Du Prez, “Efficient stabilization of carbon nanotubes through supramolecular interactions with controlled polymer structures,” in EUROFILLERS 2011, Book of abstracts, Dresden, Germany, 2011, pp. 184–184.
@inproceedings{1898378,
  abstract     = {In the current scientific research on polymers, a huge amount of research is conducted on the use and application of polymer nanocomposites. These are polymers that contain a minor fraction of nanoparticles that are small (nanometer range) in at least one dimension. One particular example of nanoparticles are carbon nanotubes (CNT). By mixing such CNTs within a polymer matrix, improvement of properties can be obtained like a higher strength and heat resistance, or a better electrical conductivity. However, without the addition of a proper stabilizing agent, the carbon nanotubes tend to form a bundle-like arrangement since they are not compatible with the polymer matrix in most cases and as a result the expected improved properties are lost. For that reason, the individual dispersion of nanotubes in the polymer matrix represents the key-step for the production of CNT-based nanocomposites of high performance.
One possibility to improve the interaction with the polymer matrix is to surface-functionalize the CNTs with a compatibilizing agent in a covalent way. However, this approach creates structural defects in the conjugated surface of CNTs and, by consequence, deteriorates their mechanical and electrical properties. By contrast, via supramolecular chemistry (non-covalent interactions like π- π stacking, cation- π interaction, amine-aromatic charge transfer), the CNT electronic structure is preserved, and consequently, the original CNT properties remain unchanged. Therefore, such a strategy is preferred to anchor stabilizing agents onto CNTs.
Recently, an imidazolium unit has been investigated as a supramolecular anchoring moiety for CNTs.1 L-lactide was polymerized via ring opening polymerization starting from a hydroxy-containing imidazolium unit. The imidazolium-functionalized PLLA has been used as an efficient stabilizer for CNTs both in solution and in PLLA matrix.
The aim of this project was to extend this strategy towards poly(n-butyl acrylate) (as a model for poly(acrylates)) and poly(styrene). For that reason, (co)polymers based on n-butyl acrylate and styrene that were end-functionalized by an imidazolium ring had to be synthesized. One of the easiest ways to achieve this objective was to make use of atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) starting from a bromine containing imidazolium initiator. Different imidazolium-containing homopolymers with various molecular weights were obtained in a controlled way. It was observed that these polymers, both poly(n-butyl acrylate) and poly(styrene), could efficiently disperse CNTs in solution. Next, also some imidazolium-containing copolymers based on n-butyl acrylate and styrene have been synthesized via ATRP and successfully tested as a stabilizer for CNTs.
The dispersion ability of the imidazolium-containing (co)polymers has been confirmed via AFM and TEM analyses.
1 Meyer, F.; Raquez, J. M.; Coulembier, O.; De Winter, J.; Gerbaux, P.; Dubois, P. Chemical Communications 2010, 46, (30), 5527-5529.},
  articleno    = {poster 64},
  author       = {Dervaux, Bart and Meyer, Franck and Raquez, Jean-Marie and Coulembier, Olivier and Dubois, Philipper and Du Prez, Filip},
  booktitle    = {EUROFILLERS 2011, Book of abstracts},
  keywords     = {Carbon nanotube,Atom Transfer Radical Polymerization (ATRP),dispersion,supramolecular interaction},
  language     = {eng},
  location     = {Dresden, Germany},
  pages        = {poster 64:184--poster 64:184},
  publisher    = {Leibniz-Institut fur Polymerforschung Dresden},
  title        = {Efficient stabilization of carbon nanotubes through supramolecular interactions with controlled polymer structures},
  year         = {2011},
}