Epoxy-based nanocomposites for electrical energy storage. I: Effects of montmorillonite and barium titanate nanofillers

V. Tomer, G. Polizos, E. Manias, C. A. Randall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

103 Scopus citations


Polymer nanocomposites prepared by epoxy reinforced with high permittivity barium titanate (BT) fillers or high aspect ratio montmorillonite (MMT) fillers exhibited marked changes in their high electric field properties and their relaxation dynamics, depending on the nanoparticle type and concentration, the nanoparticle size, and the epoxy matrix conversion. We investigated epoxy resin composites based on organically modified montmorillonite (oMMT) or BT (BaTiO3) nanoparticles in order to delineate the effects of the high aspect ratio of the MMT and the high permittivity of the BT particles. We also explored the potential benefits of the synergy between the two fillers in systems consisting of epoxy and both oMMT and BT particles. It was observed that the nature of the organic-inorganic interfaces dominate the glass transition temperature and the dielectric properties of these composites. Specifically, using dielectric relaxation spectroscopy, we probed the local dynamics of the polymer at the interfaces. The MMT systems had approximately three orders of magnitude slower interfacial dynamics than those at the BT interfaces, indicating more robust interfaces in the MMT composites than in the BT-based composites; the corresponding energy barriers (activation energies) associated with these motions were also doubled for the MMT systems. Furthermore, we investigated the effect of the decreased glass transition, interfacial area, polymer-phase at the organic-inorganic interface, and of the dielectric breakdown on the electrical energy storage capabilities of these composites.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number074116
JournalJournal of Applied Physics
Issue number7
StatePublished - Oct 1 2010

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Physics and Astronomy


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