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Effect of extensional cyclic strain on the mechanical and physico-mechanical properties of PVC-NBR/graphite composites

Journal: eXPRESS Polymer Letters
ISSN 1788-618X

Volume: 2;
Issue: 12;
Start page: 836;
Date: 2008;
Original page

Keywords: Polymer composites | Mechanical properties | Fracture and fatigue | Modeling and simulation

The variation of electrical resistivity as will as the mechanical properties of PVC (polyvinylchloride)-NBR (acrylonitrile butadiene rubber) based conductive composites filled with different concentrations of graphite were studied. These samples were studied as function of the constant deformation fatigue test. When the specimen was subjected to a large number of rapidly repeating strain cycles, and different strain amplitudes, the conductivity, σ(T), shows an initial rapid fall followed by dynamic equilibrium. Increasing the number of cycles and strain amplitudes, the conductivity remains almost constant over the temperature range 30–140°C. The equilibrium state between destruction and reconstruction of graphite particles has been detected for all strains of certain values of strain cycles (1000, 2000, 3000, and 4000 cycles for 30% strain amplitude). A preliminary study was done to optimize the possibility to use Conductive Polymer Composites (CPC) as a strain sensor and to evaluate its performance by an intrinsic physico-mechanical modification measurement. The electromechanical characterization was performed to demonstrate the adaptability and the correct functioning of the sensor as a strain gauge on the fabric. The coefficient of strain sensitivity (K) was measured for 50 phr graphite/PVCNBR vulcanized at 3000 number of strain cycles and 30% strain amplitude. There was a broad maximum of K, with a peak value of 82, which was much higher, compared to conventional wire resistors. A slight hysteresis was observed at unloading due to plasticity of the matrix. A good correlation exists between mechanical and electrical response to the strain sensitivity. Mechanical reinforcement was in accordance with the Quemada equation [1] and Guth model [2] attested to good particle-matrix adhesion. It was found that the viscous component of deformation gradually disappeared and the hardening occurred with increasing strain cycles. The modulus, fracture strength, and elongation at break increased with increasing filler volume fraction up to 40 phr of graphite particles.
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