Towards Sophisticated 3D Interphase Modelling of Advanced Bionanocomposites via Atomic Force Microscopy
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© 2020 The Authors.
Nanomechanical properties and interphase dimensions of PVA bionanocomposites reinforced with halloysite nanotubes (HNTs) and Cloisite 30B montmorillonite (MMT) were evaluated by means of peak force quantitative nanomechanical mapping (PFQNM). A three-phase theoretical composite model was established based on hard-core–soft-shell structures consisting of hard mono-/polydispersed anisotropic particles and soft interphase and matrices. Halpin-Tsai model and Mori-Tanaka model were employed to predict experimentally determined tensile moduli of PVA bionanocomposites where effective volume fraction of randomly oriented nanoparticles resulted from the inclusion of interphase properties and volume fractions. Overall, it was suggested that the estimation of elastic modulus according to effective volume fraction of nanoparticles revealed better agreement with experimental data as opposed to that based upon their nominal volume fraction. In particular, the use of polydispersed HNTs and Cloisite 30B MMT clays with Fuller particulate gradation was proven to yield the best prediction when compared with experimental data among all proposed theoretical models. This study overcomes the neglected real interphase characteristics in modelling nanocomposite materials with much more accurate estimation of their mechanical properties.
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