Development of conductive plastics for fuel cells.
Chong, Kah Wei.
Date of Issue2009
School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
This project is aimed at developing highly electrical conductive, thermally stable and mechanically strong thermoplastic polymer composites for micro fuel-cell application. An idea for preparation of electrically-conductive polymeric composites based on polypropylene (PP) has been introduced. Polypropylene (PP) was mixed in its molten state with multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) which had been non-covalently modified. Two anionic surfactants were used to modify MWCNTs non-covalently. Injection molding process was used for PP/MWCNT composites to form different sample shapes such as tensile bars, square plates, circular plates and etc. The effects of surfactant-treated MWCNTs on the rheological, physical, morphological, thermal, mechanical, and electrical properties of the PP at different compositions have been systematically examined. By using this non-covalent modification of MWCNTs, a uniform dispersion of MWCNTs in the polymer matrix has been achieved without spoiling the physical properties of MWCNTs. The mechanical properties of PP/MWCNT composites show pretty much higher than those of pure PP. For example, the PP/MWCNT composite with 1% wt loading of surfactant-treated MWCNTs has Young’s modulus which is 5 times higher than that of pure PP. Incorporating with 10% wt loading of surfactant-treated MWCNTs, the electrical conductivity of the composite is 6.7 x 10-2 S/cm which is surprisingly larger than that of pure PP (1 x 10-16 S/cm).
Final Year Project (FYP)
Nanyang Technological University