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Mechanical And Electrical Properties Of Heat-Treated Ladder Polymer Fiber

C. S. Wang, C. Y-C Lee, F. E. Arnold

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ABSTRACTThe ladder polymer poly[(7-oxo-7H, 10H-benz(d, e)imidazo(4', 5':5, 6)-benzimidazo(2, l-a)isoquinoline-3, 4:10, ll-tetrayl)-10-carbonyl] (BBL) was synthesized in polyphosphoric acid (PPA) at a concentration of 15% by weight. The polymer had an intrinsic viscosity of 8.75 dl/g in methanesulfonic acid (MSA) at 30°C. Highly oriented BBL fiber was spun by a dry-jet wet-spin process with a spin-draw-ratio of 8 to 1. After neutralization, the fiber exhibited a phosphoms content below the detectable limit (0.04%) by elemental analysis. This fiber, after a heat treatment at 300°C for 30 seconds under tension, showed a Young's modulus of 120 GPa, a tensile strength of 830 MPa and a compressive strength of 410 MPa. The fiber was also heat-treated at temperatures from 100°C to 600°C at 50°C increments for electrical conductivity measurements. It was found that room temperature DC conductivity of the BBL fiber increased dramatically from 2×10−8 S/cm with 100°C heat treatment to 3×10−4 S/cm with 350°C heat treatment and then decreased to 6×10−7 S/cm with 600°C heat treatment. The enhanced conductivity of heat-treated BBL fiber is believed due to the improved structural order in the BBL fiber and the thermally excited charge carriers.