Scalable manufacturing of hierarchical 3D polymer nanocomposites using oscillating magnetic fields

Project: Research project

Project Details


Project Summary/Abstract The research objective of this proposal is to establish a capability to bulk manufacture polymer nanocomposites with hierarchical 3D nanofiller structures using oscillating magnetic fields. The proposed work is an extension of the PI's current project, '1D-Patterned Nanocomposites Structured Using Oscillating Magnetic Fields,' funded by ONR (Code 35, Bill C Nickerson). Polymer nanocomposites, consisting of nanofillers organized within polymer matrices, are soughafter novel nano-engineered materials that can deliver improved and/or unconventional properties. Their applications include light-weight multi-functional vehicle and building structures that requires less maintenance (interlaminar reinforcement, system health monitoring, and shielding against lightening and electromagnetic interference), energy-efficient microdevices (thermal interface materials and high energy storage capacitors), and more. However, applications of polymer nanocomposites are currently limited because they cannot often be made in large scale while maintaining nano-scale organization, and their multi-scale material properties are not well characterized. In order to achieve the above objective, the PI will develop an experimental set-up to control 3D structuring of nanofillers using three-axis application of oscillating magnetic fields. Magnetic assembly is a promising, scalable method to deliver bulk amount of nanocomposites while maintaining organized nanofiller structure throughout the composite volume. Using this experimental set-up, the PI will study how magnetic nanofiller organization can be controlled by varying magnetic fields (magnitude, frequency, and phase shift), nanofillers (magnetic property, shape, and surface condition), and polymer viscosity. Then, the PI will characterize and correlate mechanical, thermal, and electrical properties of the fabricated nanocomposites with their nanofiller structures. The obtained scalable manufacturing capability and structure-interphaseproperty relationship knowledge will accelerate bulk application and certification of polymer nanocomposites, and also will be shared with students in classrooms and with public via online courses to raise awareness and understanding about the society's benefits by nano-engineered materials. This abstract is publically releasable.

Effective start/end date1/1/17 → …


  • U.S. Navy: $82,574.00


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