Surface modification of graphene for use as a structural Fortifier in water-borne epoxy coatings
Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift, 2019
Graphene, the typical two-dimensional sp2 hybridized carbon allotrope, is widely used as a filler for improving the mechanical performance of polymers. However, its superhydrophobic surface makes it a big challenge to obtain stable graphene dispersions, especially in water-borne systems. On the contrary, graphene oxide (GO) shows excellent dispersibility in water, but strong oxidants and acids destroy its structure and degrade its mechanical properties. This largely limits its application in water-borne coatings. In this work, graphene from mechanical exfoliation was surface modified by p-aminophenol derived diazonium salt to achieve a homogenous dispersion. Moreover, the hydroxyl groups in p-aminophenol are able to combine with epoxy resins during the curing process to improve mechanical performance of the final coatings. The result shows that functionalized graphene shows a lower coefficient of friction and better abrasion resistance compared to GO.