Developments in and potential of polymer /nano composites

S. Kumar
Georgia Institute of Technology, US

Keywords: polymer nanocomposite, nanoparticle

Summary:

A century ago, not only the field of polymers practically did not exist, but even the concept of polymer was not an accepted concept. Today, polymers and particularly synthetic polymers play an important role in our way of life. Now the question is, what concepts, materials, or material systems will have significant impact on our way of life in the coming decades. Nano materials are now converting passive polymers and fibers into active materials that have the potential to provide many functionalities to the material systems. Carbon nanotubes can act as nucleating agents for polymer crystallization and as template for polymer orientation. Carbon nanotubes can also make polymers, electrically and thermally conducting, and provide anisotropic optical properties. Similarly use of other nano materials can impart added functionality. Issues, challenges, and potential in the field of polymeric nano composites will be discussed with examples of research results in the area of polymer/carbon nanotube composites. It is expected that nano composites will significantly impact high performance, electronic, medical and other material related industries in the coming decades.