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Effect Of Injection Molding Conditions On Crystalline Structure And Electrical Resistivity Of PP/MWCNT Nanocomposites

Marta Zaccone, Ilaria Armentano, Federico Cesano, Domenica Scarano, Alberto Frache, Luigi Torre, Marco Monti

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Polypropylene (PP) / multi-walled carbon nanotube (MWCNT) nanocomposites were prepared by melt-mixing and used to manufacture samples by injection molding. The effect of processing conditions on the crystallinity and electrical resistivity was studied. Accordingly, samples were produced varying the mold temperature and injection rate, and the DC electrical resistivity was measured. The morphology of MWCNT clusters was studied by optical and electron microscopy, while X-ray diffraction was used to study the role of the crystalline structure of PP. As a result, an anisotropic electrical behavior induced by the process was observed, which is further influenced by the injection molding processing condition. It was demonstrated that a reduction of electrical resistivity can be obtained by increasing mold temperature and injection rate, which was associated to the formation of the γ-phase and the related inter-cluster morphology of the MWCNT conductive network.