chapter  1
16 Pages

Carbon Nanotube/Polymer Composites

Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) have attracted great enthusiasm among researchers due to their extraordinary mechanical, electrical, and thermal properties. ™e use of polymers šlled with CNTs is especially interesting as an extension of research on composites. ™e number of publications on CNTs and CNT/ polymer composites has increased dramatically in recent years (see Figure 1.1). Size in nanotubes has an immediate advantage; for example, the increase in surface area of CNTs relative to traditional šbers leads to greater interaction between the šber and the surrounding polymer matrix when they are incorporated within polymer composites. Considerable mechanical reinforcement of polymers with CNTs is of particular advantage and is a result of composites because of the inherent mechanical properties of the nanotubes themselves. ™e high aspect ratio (near 1000) and outstanding conductivity of CNTs can result in ultralow electrical percolation threshold in polymer composites. Finally, due to the one-dimensional structure of CNTs, oriented CNT/polymer composite šbers or tapes have also generated interest, as such oriented systems can result in high reinforcing eÀciency as well as excellent uniaxial conductivity [1]. A number of review papers and books have been published on CNTreinforced polymer composites for further reference [2-8].