Nanotech 2011

Preparation and Characterization of Electrospun Nylon 6/FeCl2 Composite Nanofibers

N. Kimura, B-S. Kim, Y. Enomoto, I-S. Kim
Shinshu University, JP

Keywords: nanofibers, Nylon 6


Nylon 6 (polyamide 6) is widely used as useful engineering polymer, especially for fiber and film manufacturing [1]. It is well known that nylon 6 has two different crystalline structures, - and - forms [1-4]. The -crystal form has known to be transformed into the -crystal form by chemical and/or physical mechanisms such as aqueous potassium iodide-iodine treating [3-4], high-speed spinning [5], and nylon 6 nanocomposites containing clay, carbon nanotubes (CNT), and additives, etc [6-7]. Moreover, it is said that additive salt influences the structures of polymer chain. That is, the structure of polymer chain may break down and thereby results in a structure transformation. In this work, we have successfully prepared the nylon 6/FeCl2 composite nanofibers by electrospinning, and investigated the structure transformation and mechanical properties of nylon 6/FeCl2 composite nanofibers depending on FeCl2 contents. The resultant electrospun nylon 6/FeCl2 composite nanofibers were characterized with the field emission scanning electron microscope (FE-SEM), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), thermo gravimetry analyzer (TGA), wide angle x-ray diffraction (WAXD), Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FT-IR) and tensile tester. The structural analysis indicated that as increasing the amount of additive FeCl2, electrospun nylon 6/FeCl2 composite nanofibers exhibited spider-like network webs consisted of secondary nanofibers with several nanometer diameters. TEM analysis showed that iron particles were distributed in the fibers, as shown in Figure 1. Form the results of DSC, XRD, and FT-IR, it was confirmed that the crystalline structure of nylon 6 in the nylon 6/FeCl2 composite nanofibers were weakened, as increasing the amount of additive FeCl2. In addition, tensile strength of nylon 6/FeCl2 composite nanofibrous nonwoven membranes and single nanofiber was measured. Figure 2 shows a specially developed tensile test machine for tensile test of single nanofibers. Figure 3 shows typical stress–strain curves of pure nylon 6 and nylon 6/FeCl2 composite nanofibrous membranes with different FeCl2 contents. As a result, we found that Young’s modulus were gradually increased as increasing the amount of additive FeCl2, probably due to a partial crosslinking between nylon 6 chains by the incorporated iron particles. Accordingly, the elongation at break also decreased.

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