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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter November 21, 2014

On the role of multi-functional polyhedral oligomeric silsesquioxane in polystyrene-zinc oxide nanocomposites

Elisabetta Morici, Rossella Arrigo and Nadka Tz. Dintcheva


Multi-functional trisilanol phenyl (TSPH) and trisilanol isobutyl (TSIB) polyhedral oligomeric silsesquioxane (POSS) have been used in the formulation of advanced polystyrene (PS)-zinc oxide (ZnO) nanocomposites. The neat matrix and PS/ZnO-based nanocomposites have been characterized through rheological, morphological, mechanical, and dynamic thermo-mechanical analysis. Both TSPH and TSIB are able to improve the dispersion of ZnO into the polystyrene matrix; furthermore, adding TSIB leads to better results because it facilitates better solubility into the PS matrix and interaction/reaction with the ZnO nanopowder. Finally, the optical properties and photo-oxidative resistance of the nanocomposite films have been evaluated. The POSS molecules synergistically interact with ZnO nanopowder in the protection of PS matrix against photo-oxidative process. The nanocomposite films containing both ZnO and POSS molecules, particularly TSIB, exhibit better UV-shielding properties than the PS/ZnO one, without loss of optical transparency.

Corresponding author: Nadka Tz. Dintcheva, Dipartimento di Ingegneria Civile, Ambientale, Aerospaziale, dei Materiali, Università di Palermo, Viale delle Scienze, ed.6, 90128, Palermo, Italy, e-mail:


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Received: 2014-8-1
Accepted: 2014-9-19
Published Online: 2014-11-21
Published in Print: 2015-5-1

©2015 by De Gruyter

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