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Impact of polymer modulus on water accumulation at polymer / metal oxide interfaces



Alper Karul, Kar T. Tan, Christopher C. White, Donald L. Hunston, Steve marshall, Bulent Akgun, Sushil K. Satija, Christopher Soles, Bryan D. Vogt


Ambient moisture is known to accumulate at the interface between polymers and metal oxides, leading to detrimental consequences on physical properties such as modulus and adhesion. Direct measurement of the interfacial profile has utilized neutron reflectivity, while thickness dependent swelling of a thin film series has been also utilized to indirectly assess the quantity of water at interfaces. In this work, the moisture adsorption on the clean surfaces is compared to that obtained when the surface is coated with a polymer film. The mechanical properties of the polymer impacts the quantity of moisture adsorbed at the interface; surprisingly less moisture accumulates at the interface if a rubbery polymer is the coating. Additionally for glassy polymers, the total accumulation at the interface is identical to the adsorption on the clean surface. This result potentially provides a simple route to understand solvent distributions in glassy nanocomposites by measuring the adsorption onto the bare filler materials prior to formulation of the nanocomposite.


Adhesion, moisture, polymer, modulus, water, interface, mechanical properties


Karul, A. , Tan, K. , White, C. , Hunston, D. , marshall, S. , Akgun, B. , Satija, S. , Soles, C. and Vogt, B. (2009), Impact of polymer modulus on water accumulation at polymer / metal oxide interfaces, Polymer, [online], (Accessed March 4, 2024)
Created March 31, 2009, Updated October 12, 2021