Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Nanoparticles Make Silicone Rubber Clearly Stronger

27.10.2003


Silicone rubber and other rubber-like materials have a wide variety of uses, but in almost every case they must be reinforced with particles to make them stronger or less permeable to gases or liquids. University of Cincinnati (UC) chemistry professor James Mark and colleagues have devised a technique that strengthens silicone rubber with nanoscale particles, but leaves the material crystal clear.



Silicone rubber is often reinforced by tiny particles of silica (the primary component of sand and the mineral quartz). However, those silica particles can cloud the silicone rubber, which is a problem for protective masks, contact lenses and medical tubing that rely on silicone rubber’s transparency.

Mark, along with graduate student Guru Rajan, UC professor Dale Schaefer, UC associate professor Gregory Beaucage and Yeungnam University (Korea) professor Gil Sur reported on their new technique in the August 15 issue of the Journal of Polymer Science Part B: Polymer Physics.


The technique infuses silicone rubber with nanoparticles up to five times smaller than the silica particles formed by comparable methods while still providing the same level of reinforcement and maintaining the silicone rubber’s clarity.

Variations on the technique might also be used to enhance other properties of silicone rubber and similar materials, affecting such traits as impermeability to gases or liquids. This could lead to better masks or suits to protect against agents that might be used in terrorist attacks.

The team’s technique is an improvement over related methods that use a chemical reaction to create silica particles within the silicone polymers. By generating the required catalyst in place from a tin salt and by restricting the amount of water to only that absorbed from water vapor in the air, the silica particles remain smaller—only 30 nm to 50 nm across—and are evenly dispersed throughout the silicone rubber. At that size, smaller than the wavelength of ultraviolet and visible light, the silica nanoparticles are essentially invisible.

NSF Media Contact: David Hart, 703-292-7737, dhart@nsf.gov

NSF Science Experts: Andrew Lovinger, 703-292-4933, alovinge@nsf.gov
Triantafillos J. Mountziaris, 703-292-8371, tmountzi@nsf.gov

Principal Investigators: James Mark, 513-556-9292, james.mark@uc.edu
Gregory Beaucage, 513-556-3063, gregory.beaucage@uc.edu

Josh Chamot | NSF
Further information:
http://www.nsf.gov/od/lpa/news/03/tip031027.htm#third

More articles from Materials Sciences:

nachricht Getting closer to porous, light-responsive materials
26.07.2017 | Kyoto University

nachricht Multitasking monolayers
25.07.2017 | Vanderbilt University

All articles from Materials Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Carbon Nanotubes Turn Electrical Current into Light-emitting Quasi-particles

Strong light-matter coupling in these semiconducting tubes may hold the key to electrically pumped lasers

Light-matter quasi-particles can be generated electrically in semiconducting carbon nanotubes. Material scientists and physicists from Heidelberg University...

Im Focus: Flexible proximity sensor creates smart surfaces

Fraunhofer IPA has developed a proximity sensor made from silicone and carbon nanotubes (CNT) which detects objects and determines their position. The materials and printing process used mean that the sensor is extremely flexible, economical and can be used for large surfaces. Industry and research partners can use and further develop this innovation straight away.

At first glance, the proximity sensor appears to be nothing special: a thin, elastic layer of silicone onto which black square surfaces are printed, but these...

Im Focus: 3-D scanning with water

3-D shape acquisition using water displacement as the shape sensor for the reconstruction of complex objects

A global team of computer scientists and engineers have developed an innovative technique that more completely reconstructs challenging 3D objects. An ancient...

Im Focus: Manipulating Electron Spins Without Loss of Information

Physicists have developed a new technique that uses electrical voltages to control the electron spin on a chip. The newly-developed method provides protection from spin decay, meaning that the contained information can be maintained and transmitted over comparatively large distances, as has been demonstrated by a team from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute. The results have been published in Physical Review X.

For several years, researchers have been trying to use the spin of an electron to store and transmit information. The spin of each electron is always coupled...

Im Focus: The proton precisely weighted

What is the mass of a proton? Scientists from Germany and Japan successfully did an important step towards the most exact knowledge of this fundamental constant. By means of precision measurements on a single proton, they could improve the precision by a factor of three and also correct the existing value.

To determine the mass of a single proton still more accurate – a group of physicists led by Klaus Blaum and Sven Sturm of the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Clash of Realities 2017: Registration now open. International Conference at TH Köln

26.07.2017 | Event News

Closing the Sustainability Circle: Protection of Food with Biobased Materials

21.07.2017 | Event News

»We are bringing Additive Manufacturing to SMEs«

19.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

CCNY physicists master unexplored electron property

26.07.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Molecular microscopy illuminates molecular motor motion

26.07.2017 | Life Sciences

Large-Mouthed Fish Was Top Predator After Mass Extinction

26.07.2017 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>