Understanding the interfacial interactions and structure is important to better design and application of organic-inorganic nanohybrids. This paper presents our recent molecular dynamic studies on organoclays and polymer nanocomposites, including the layering behavior of organoclays, structural and dynamic properties of dioctadecyldimethyl ammoniums in organoclays, and interfacial interactions and structure of polyurethane nanocomposites. The results demonstrate that the layering behaviors of organoclays are closely related to the chain length of quaternary alkyl ammoniums and cation exchangeable capacity of clays. In addition to typical layered structures such as monolayer, bilayer and pseudo-trilayer, a pseudo-quadrilayer structure was also observed in organoclays modified with dioctadecyldimethyl ammoniums (DODDMA). In such a structure, alkyl chains do not lie flat within a single layer but interlace, and also jump to the next layer or even the next nearest layer. Moreover, the diffusion constants of nitrogen and methylene atoms increase with the temperature and methelene towards the tail groups. For polyurethane nanocomposite, the van der Waals interaction between apolar alkyl chains and soft segments of polyurethane predominates the interactions between organoclay and polyurethane. Different from most bulk polyurethane systems, there is no distinct phase-separated structure for the polyurethane.
|Number of pages
|Journal of Materials Science and Technology
|Published - 1 Jun 2005
- Clay minerals
- Molecular dynamics simulation