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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter September 15, 2021

The Effect of Nanosilicates on the Performance of Polyethylene Terephthalate Films Prepared by Twin-Screw Extrusion

  • A. Ghanbari , M.-C. Heuzey and P. J. Carreau


Polyethylene terephthalate (PET) films were prepared by cast extrusion using a twin-screw extruder with a severe screw profile. The effect of an organically modified montmorillonite on thermal, mechanical, optical, and barrier properties of the PET films were investigated. Morphological characterization of the nanocomposite films was performed by employing wide angle X-ray diffraction (WAXD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) followed by image analysis. The results unfold a mixed morphology for the nanocomposite films with more than 95% exfoliated and intercalated silicate layer structures, depending on the screw rotation speed. The remarkable dispersion of the organoclay particles at the nano-level is discussed in terms of solubility parameter and favorable interactions between PET macromolecules and organic modifier of the nanoclay. The crystal content of the nanocomposite films and their cold and hot crystallization temperatures confirmed the role of silicate nanolayers as a heterogeneous nucleating agent. While all nanocomposite films exhibit higher haze values in comparison to the neat PET samples, incorporation of 2 wt% nanoclay brought about 25% increase in tensile modulus and barrier properties. A range of screw rotation speeds with optimized properties in terms of haze, morphology, thermal, mechanical, and barrier properties is suggested.

Pierre J. Carreau, Research Center for High Performance Polymer and Composite Materials (CREPEC), Chemical Engineering Department, Polytechnique Montreal, PO Box 6079, Stn Centre-Ville, Montreal, QC, Canada H3C 3A7


The authors are thankful to Mrs. W. Leelapornpisit for the SEM and TEM analysis. Financial support from NSERC (Natural Science and Engineering Research Council of Canada) in the context of the NRC-NSERC-BDC Nanotechnology Initiative is gratefully acknowledged.


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Received: 2020-09-11
Accepted: 2020-12-12
Published Online: 2021-09-15
Published in Print: 2021-09-27

© 2021 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston, Germany

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