• Feng-Ming Yin,Li-Li Wu,Shu-Sheng Li,Xiao-Na Pan,Xiao-Li Zhu,Xu-Bao Jiang,Xiang Zheng Kong

    Corrected Proof
    DOI:10.1007/s10118-024-3120-x
    Abstract:Non-aromatic fluorescent and multi-responsive materials, exhibiting inherent fluorescence emission and controlled phase change, have garnered significant attention in recent years. However, the underlying interaction between their fluorescent properties and phase transition remains unclear. In this study, we synthesized a series of catalyst-free aza-Michael addition-based polyethyleneimine (RFPEI) materials by reacting polyethyleneimine (PEI) with N-isopropyl acrylamide (NIPAM). The resulting RFPEI was comprehensively characterized, and demonstrated dual-phase transition behavior (LCST and UCST) in water, which could be finely tuned by adjusting its composition or external factors such as pH. Notably, upon UV irradiation (365 nm), RFPEI exhibited strong fluorescence emission. We further investigated the effects of NIPAM grafting percentage to PEI, polymer concentration, and pH on the LCST/UCST and fluorescent properties of RFPEI aqueous solutions. Moreover, we showcased the great potential of RFPEI as a versatile tool for physiological cell imaging, trace detection, and controlled release of doxorubicin. Our study presents a novel class of stimuli-responsive fluorescent materials with promising applications in the field of biomedicine.  
    Keywords:Polyethyleneimine;Multi-responsiveness;Intrinsic fluorescence emission;Cell imaging;Controlled drug release   
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    Published:2024-04-16
  • Hong-Tao Shan,Jia-Xin He,Bing-Yan Zhu,Xue-Ting Cao,Ying-Ying Yan,Jian-Jun Zhou,Hong Huo

    Corrected Proof
    DOI:10.1007/s10118-024-3117-5
    Abstract:In this work, poly(3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT) ultrathin films (P3HT-T) were prepared by spin-coating a dilute P3HT solution (in a toluene: o-dichlorobenzene (Tol:ODCB) blend with a volume ratio of 80:20) with ultrasonication and the addition of the nucleating agent bicycle [2.2.1] heptane-2,3-dicarboxylic acid disodium salt (HPN-68L) on glass, Si wafers and indium tin oxide (ITO) substrates. The electrical and mechanical properties of the P3HT-T ultrathin films were investigated, and it was found that the conductivity and crack onset strain (COS) were simultaneously improved in comparison with those of the corresponding pristine P3HT film (P3HT-0, without ultrasonication and nucleating agent) on the same substrate, regardless of what substrate was used. Moreover, the conductivity of P3HT-T ultrathin films on different substrates was similar (varying from 3.7 S·cm−1 to 4.4 S·cm−1), yet the COS increased from 97% to 138% by varying the substrate from a Si wafer to ITO. Combining grazing-incidence wide-angle X-ray diffraction (GIXRD), UV-visible (UV-Vis) spectroscopy and atomic force microscopy (AFM), we found that the solid order and crystallinity of the P3HT-T ultrathin film on the Si wafer are highest, followed by those on glass, and much lower on ITO. Finally, the surface energy and roughness of three substrates were investigated, and it was found that the polar component of the surface energy γp plays a critical role in determining the crystalline microstructures of P3HT ultrathin films on different substrates. Our work indicates that the P3HT ultrathin film can obviously improve the stretchability and simultaneously retain similar electrical performance when a suitable substrate is chosen. These findings offer a new direction for research on stretchable CP ultrathin films to facilitate future practical applications.  
    Keywords:P3HT ultrathin film;Substrate;Crystalline microstructures;Polar component of the surface energy;Electrical and stretchable performances   
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    Published:2024-04-16
  • Jun-Hao Zhou,Li-Ming Tang

    Corrected Proof
    DOI:10.1007/s10118-024-3121-9
    Abstract:In this study, a series of hindered urea bond (HUB) containing polyurethane-urea methacrylate prepolymers and a none HUB containing polyurethane methacrylate prepolymer were prepared using isobornyl methacrylate as the reactive diluent via one-pot procedure. The prepolymers were characterized fully by various techniques. Then, their thermosets were fabricated via UV curing in presence of a photo initiator, and their mechanical property and thermal behavior were investigated and compared. Different from the none HUB containing thermoset, the HUB containing thermosets (defined as PUT) could be recycled and reprocessed by hot press under relatively mild conditions with high recovery ratio of mechanical property. Furthermore, zinc oxide (ZnO) nanoparticles were modified with 3-(trimethoxysilyl) propyl methacrylate and the modified ZnO (defined as ZnO-TPM) was dispersed and polymerized into PUT matrix to prepare their nanocomposites. The influence of ZnO-TPM on the mechanical performance of the composites was evaluated, which indicated that the Young’s modulus and tensile strength increased gradually to the maximum values at ZnO-TPM content of 1 wt% and then decreased. The composites also displayed good reprocessability with improved recovery ratio compared to the pure PUT sample. In addition, the composite materials exhibited strong UV absorption capacity, implying their potential application in the circumstance where UV-shielding was required.  
    Keywords:Polyurethane-urea methacrylate;Hindered urea bond;ZnO nanoparticles;Reprocessing;UV curing   
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    Published:2024-04-16
  • Yan-Jiang Li,Meng-Long Hu,Jun-Wen Zhang,Qiang Fu,Jie Zhang

    Corrected Proof
    DOI:10.1007/s10118-024-3119-3
    Abstract:To enhance the mechanical properties of polypropylene random copolymer (PPR), polystyrene (PS) with four different contents were added to the PPR matrix through melt blending. Subsequently, using the Multi-Flow Vibration Injection Molding (MFVIM) technology, PPR/PS in situ microfiber composites (MFC) with different blending ratios were prepared. The results indicated that blending ratio had a great impact on the phase morphology and crystal structure of MFVIM samples, which was different from those of conventional injection molding (CIM) samples. PS ultrafine fibers could be formed under the shear field and could absorb the PPR molecular chains to form hybrid shish-kebab structures. Meanwhile, the PPR matrix could also form shish-kebab structures under the effect of strong shear. When the PS content reached 20%, under the combined action of PS in situ microfibers and highly oriented crystal structure, the tensile strength and Young's modulus of the sample were obviously improved and the impact strength remained at a relatively high level. So a strong and tough balanced PPR based material was obtained. These results provide valuable insights for expanding the industrial and daily-life applications of PPR and show promising development prospects.  
    Keywords:PPR;MFVIM;In situ microfibers;Shear field;Hybrid shish-kebab structures   
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    Published:2024-04-16
  • Lan-Lan Hou,Meng-Na Qiu,Ya-Qiong Wang,Tong-Hua Bai,Zhi-Min Cui,Jing-Chong Liu,Ying-Qun Qi,Nü Wang,Yong Li,Yong Zhao

    Corrected Proof
    DOI:10.1007/s10118-024-3109-5
    Abstract:Efforts to develop innovative water harvesting strategies offer powerful solutions to alleviate the water crisis, especially in remote and arid areas. Inspired by the hydrophobic/hydrophilic pattern of desert beetles and water self-propulsion property of spider silks, a double-strand hydrophobic PVDF-HFP/hydrophilic PAN nanofibers yarn is proposed by electrospinning and twisting techniques. The double-strand cooperation approach allows for water deposition on hydrophobic PVDF-HFP segment and transport under the asymmetric capillary driving force of hydrophilic PAN segment, thus speeded up the aggregation and growth of droplets. The effects of the composition and the diameter ratio of the two primary yarns were studied and optimized for boosting fog collection performance. The double-strand anisotropic yarn not only provide an effective method for water harvesting, but also hold the potential to inspire innovative design concepts for fog collection materials in challenging environments.  
    Keywords:Fog collection;Wettability;Electrospinning;Nanofibers;Spider silk   
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    Published:2024-04-16
  • Meng-Yun Wang,Yue Zhang,Dan Wang,Ming Yao,Yi-Xuan Wang,Xing-Ping Zhou,Hai-Yan Peng,Xiao-Lin Xie

    Corrected Proof
    DOI:10.1007/s10118-024-3110-z
    Abstract:Holographic optical elements (HOEs) based on polymer composites have become a research hot spot in recent years for augmented reality (AR) due to the significant improvement of optical performance, dynamic range, ease of processing and high yield rate. Nevertheless, it remains a formidable challenge to obtain a large field of view (FOV) and brightness due to the limited refractive index modulation. Herein, we report an effective method to tackle the challenge by doping an epoxy liquid crystal termed E6M, which enables a large refractive index modulation of 0.050 @ 633 nm and low haze of 5.0% at a doping concentration of 5 wt%. This achievement may be ascribed to the improved molecular ordering of liquid crystals within the holographic polymer composites. The high refractive index modulation can endow transmission-type holographic polymer composites with a high diffraction efficiency of 96.2% at a small thickness of 5 μm, which would promise the design of thin and lightweight AR devices.  
    Keywords:Polymer nanocomposites;Holography;AR/VR;Refractive index modulation;Liquid crystal   
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    Published:2024-04-16
  • Ying Zhou,Bai Xue,Lan Xie,Chang-Mei Wu,Qiang Zheng

    Corrected Proof
    DOI:10.1007/s10118-024-3112-x
    Abstract:Since electromagnetic pollution is detrimental to human health and the environment, numerous efforts have been successively made to achieve excellent electromagnetic interference shielding effectiveness (EMI SE) via designing the hierarchical structures for electromagnetic interference (EMI) shielding polymer composites. Among the plentiful structures, the asymmetric structures are currently a hot spot, principally categorizing into multi-layered, porous, fibrous, and segregated asymmetric structures, which endows the high EMI shielding performance for polymer composites incorporated with magnetic, conductive, and/or dielectric micro/nano-fillers, due to the “absorption-reflection-reabsorption” shielding mechanism. Therefore, this review provides the retrospection and summary of the efforts with respect to abundant asymmetric structures and multifunctional micro/nano-fillers for enhancing EMI shielding properties, which is conducive to the booming development of polymeric EMI shielding materials for the promising prospect in modern electronics and 5-generation (5G) technology.  
    Keywords:Asymmetric structure;Micro/nano functional filler;Polymer composite;Electromagnetic interference shielding   
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    Published:2024-04-16
  • Cheng-Jiang Lin,Jun-Jun Wang,Yuan Jiang,Shu-Li Chen,Hong-Fei Li,Wen-Han Zhao,Qing-Rong Huang,Chang-Ru Rong,Xiao-Zheng Duan

    Corrected Proof
    DOI:10.1007/s10118-024-3105-9
    Abstract:We utilize molecular dynamics simulations to investigate the microstructures of ions and polyelectrolytes in aqueous solutions under external electric fields. By focusing on the multi-body interactions between ionic components and H2O molecules, as well as their responses to the external electric fields, we clarify several nontrivial molecular features of the ionic and polyelectrolyte solutions, such as the solvations of cations and anions, clustering of the ions, and dispersions/aggregations of polyelectrolyte chains, as well as the corresponding responses of H2O molecules in these contexts. Our simulations illustrate the variations in structures of ionic solutions caused by reversing the charge sign of the ions, and elucidate the disparity in structures between anionic and cationic polyelectrolyte solutions in the presence of the external electric fields. This work clarifies the mechanism for the alternations in complex multi-body interactions in aqueous solutions caused by the application electric field, which can contribute to the fundamental understanding of the physical and chemical natures of ion-containing and charged polymeric systems.  
    Keywords:Polyelectrolyte;Ions;Aqueous solutions;External electric fields;Asymmetric dipole   
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    Published:2024-04-08
  • Yu-Liang Yang,Tai-Ran Zhang,Yan-Ting Han,Shao-Yun Guo,Qin-Gong Rong,Jia-Bin Shen

    Corrected Proof
    DOI:10.1007/s10118-024-3107-7
    Abstract:In order to achieve efficient and durable oil-water emulsion separation, the membranes possessing high separation efficiency and mechanical strength attract extensive attention and are in great demand. In present study, a kind of polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE)-based bilayer membrane was fabricated by electrospinning fibrous PTFE (fPTFE) on an expanded PTFE (ePTFE) substrate. The morphological observation revealed that the fibrous structure of the fPTFE layer could be tailored by controlling the formulation of spinning solution. The addition of appropriate polyoxyethylene (PEO) would make the fibers in the fPTFE layer finer and more uniform. As a result, the compounded membrane exhibited a small pore size of approximately 1.25 μm and a substantial porosity nearing 80%. This led to super-hydrophobicity, characterized by a high water contact angle (WCA) of 149.8°, and facilitated rapid oil permeation. The water-in-oil emulsion separation experiment further confirmed that the compounded membrane not only had a high separation efficiency closing 100%, but such an outstanding separation capacity could be largely retained, either through multiple cycles of use or through strong acid (pH=1), strong alkali (pH=12), or high-temperature (100 °C) treatment. Additionally, the mechanical behavior of the bilayer membrane was basically contributed by that of each layer in terms of their volume ratio. More significantly, the poor creep resistance of fPTFE layer was suppressed by compounding with ePTFE substrate. Hence, this study has laid the groundwork for a novel approach to create PTFE-based compounded membranes with exceptional overall characteristics, showing promise for applications in the realm of emulsion separation.  
    Keywords:ePTFE;Electrospinning membrane;Bilayer compounding;Emulsion separation   
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    Published:2024-04-03
  • Yang Chen,Xiao-Ming Shao,Liang He,Yi-Nuo Xu,Qi-Yuan Yao,Ding Feng,Wen-Cai Wang

    Corrected Proof
    DOI:10.1007/s10118-024-3108-6
    Abstract:In this study, flexible and highly conductive composite rubber at low filler content was successfully prepared through polydopamine-assisted electroless silver plating plus mechanical mixing. Firstly, carbon fibers (CF) were activated by polydopamine (PDA) to improve the surface activity by self-polymerization reaction. Next, because of the metal chelating ability of PDA, silver layer was firmly deposited on the surface of CF through a facile electroless silver plating method. Finally, flexible silver-plated carbon fibers (Ag/pCF) silicone rubber composites prepared by mechanical mixing. By using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and X-ray diffraction (XRD), the chemical composition and crystal structure of Ag/pCF were examined, and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) was used to assess the surface morphology of the Ag/pCF. The results showed that a uniform and dense silver layer was formed on the surface of the CF, and the conductivity of the Ag/pCF could reach 7885 S/cm. It was noteworthy that the composite rubber filled with only 45 phr Ag/pCF had a high electromagnetic interference shielding effectiveness (100 dB) due to the low density and high aspect ratio of Ag/pCF. The composite rubber has excellent potential for application in the field of electromagnetic interference shielding.  
    Keywords:Carbon fibers;Polydopamine;Electroless plating;Silver;Electromagnetic interference shielding   
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    Published:2024-04-03
  • Shan-Shan Jin,Si-Nong Wang,Yan-Yan Huang,Jing-Yu Zhang,Peng Liu,Hui Yu,Hong-Dong Zhang,Yu-Liang Yang

    Corrected Proof
    DOI:10.1007/s10118-024-3102-z
    Abstract:Against the backdrop of a global paper resource shortage, there is a growing need to identify fast-growing tree species capable of producing long-lasting paper. Three plant species namely Broussonetia kazinoki, Broussonetia papyrifera and hybrid paper mulberry, belong to the Broussonetia genus, were collected from China to study their white bark suitability for pulp and papermaking. Their chemical composition revealed that the holocellulose content in Broussonetia kazinoki and Broussonetia papyrifera was more than 80%. The molecular weight distribution of several holocellulose/α-cellulose is observed by GPC, which allows us to better observe the changes of various components on the molecular weight. The yield, lignin, whiteness, and molecular weight of the pulps obtained by NaOH treatment were determined. Optical microscope was used to characterize the fiber length-width ratio and rigidity. Finally, the improvement of the fiber rigidity method based on the Kratky-Porod chain model makes it more theoretical and further reveals the influencing factors of fiber rigidity. This study demonstrates the high potentiality of these three species for papermaking applications.  
    Keywords:Broussonetia genus;Cellulose;Alkaline pulping;Kratky-Porod chain model;Fiber rigidity   
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    Published:2024-04-03
  • Yi-Xuan Li,Liang-Ying Wu,Yan Yang,Yao-Zhong Lu,Zhong-Ying Ji,Yu-Xiong Guo,Xiao-Long Wang,Qiao-Sheng Pu

    Corrected Proof
    DOI:10.1007/s10118-024-3114-8
    Abstract:Inkjet 3D printing has potential in the additive manufacturing of electronic circuits and devices. However, inks that can be used for printing layers with T5%>300 °C or hardness>200 MPa have been rarely reported. Cyanate ester (CE) polymers have excellent thermal stability, high strength, and low shrinkage compared to other common dielectric inks for inkjet 3D printing, but cannot be quickly shaped by ultraviolet (UV) irradiation or thermal treatment. Combining CEs with UV-curable monomers may be a possible way to accelerate crosslinking, but there are challenges from the adverse effects of the dilution of both monomers. In this study, dielectric inks with acrylate and cyanate moieties were developed. The low viscosity and surface tension of the CE precursor (Bisphenol E cyanate ester) were combined with photocurable acrylate diluent monomers and cross-linker to realize an ink suitable for inkjet 3D printing. An internal dual three-dimensional cross-linked network structure resin was prepared by a combination of photocuring and thermal curing with T5% up to 326.69 °C, hardness up to 431.84 MPa, dielectric constant of 2.70 at 8 GHz, and shrinkage of 1.64%. The developed dielectric inks can be applied to the 3D printing of printed circuit boards and other electronic devices that require dielectric properties.  
    Keywords:Inkjet printing;Cyanate ester resin;3D doubly cross-linked network;Good thermal stability   
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    Published:2024-03-29
  • You-Cai Xue,Yi-Ming Yang,Di Jia

    Corrected Proof
    DOI:10.1007/s10118-024-3116-6
    Abstract:Polyampholyte gels, which have hierarchical structures, exhibit excellent self-healing properties and have great promise for biomaterials and bioengineering. We investigated the relationship between microscopic structures and macroscopic viscoelastic properties of polyampholyte gels and found three factors influencing their viscoelastic properties, including the chemical crosslinking bonds, topological entanglements controlled by monomer concentration, and the ionic bonds. Ionic strength plays a major role on the strength of ionic bonds. A crossover point of elastic modulus and loss modulus was observed in the dynamic frequency sweeps at low monomer concentration or low chemical crosslinking density for gels with intermediate strength of ionic bonds. The solid-liquid transition signaled by the crossover point is a typical feature of dynamic associated gels, representing the dynamical association-dissociation of the ionic bonds and full relaxation of the topological entanglements in the gel network. While the crossover point disappears when the ionic bonds are too weak or too strong to form “permanent” bonds. Consistently, in the non-linear yielding measurement, gels with intermediate strength of the ionic bonds are ductile and yield at very large shear strain due to the self-healing properties and the dynamic association-dissociation of the ionic bonds. But the self-healing properties disappear when the ionic bond strength is too weak or too strong. Our work reveals the mechanism of how the dynamic association-dissociation of ionic bonds influences both the linear and non-linear viscoelastic properties of the polyampholyte gels.  
    Keywords:Polyampholyte gel;Ionic bond;Topological entanglement;Self-healing;Hierarchical structure   
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    Published:2024-03-29
  • Xiao-Liang Zeng,Xin-Sheng Lan,Yan Wang,Lin Zhang,De-Ming Guo,Hai-Bo Zhao

    Corrected Proof
    DOI:10.1007/s10118-024-3100-1
    Abstract:Wood, a readily available and sustainable natural resource, has found widespread use in construction and furniture. However, its inherent flammability poses a potential fire risk. Although intumescent fire-retardant coatings effectively mitigate this risk, achieving high transparency in such coatings presents a significant challenge. In our approach, we employed a cross-linked network of phytic acid anion and N-[3-(trimethoxysilyl) propyl]-N,N,N-trimethylammonium cation to create a transparent "three-in-one" intumescent coating. The collaborative P/N/Si flame-retardant effect markedly improved the intumescent char-forming capability, preventing the wood from rapid decomposition. This resulted in a substantial reduction in heat release (13.9% decrease in THR) and an increased limiting oxygen index (LOI) value of 35.5%. Crucially, the high transparency of the coating ensured minimal impact on the wood's appearance, allowing the natural wood grains to remain clearly visible. This innovative approach provides a straightforward method for developing transparent intumescent flame-retardant coatings suitable for wooden substrates. The potential applications extend to preserving ancient buildings and heritage conservation efforts.  
    Keywords:Fire-resistant coating;Flame retardancy;Wood;Transparency   
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    Published:2024-03-29
  • Ye-Peng Qiao,Chun-Lai Ren

    Corrected Proof
    DOI:10.1007/s10118-024-3106-8
    Abstract:Understanding how supercoiled DNA releases intramolecular stress is essential for its functional realization. However, the molecular mechanism underlying the relaxation process remains insufficiently explored. Here we employed MD simulations based on the oxDNA2 model to investigate the relaxation process of a 336-base pair supercoiled minicircular DNA under double-strand breaks with two fixed endpoints. Our simulations show that the conformational changes in the DNA occur continuously, with intramolecular stress release happening abruptly only when the DNA chain traverses the breakage site. The relaxation process is influenced not only by the separation distance between the fixed ends but also their angle. Importantly, we observe an inhibitory effect on the relaxation characterized by small angles, where short terminal loops impede DNA conformational adjustments, preserving the supercoiled structure. These findings elucidate the intricate interplay between DNA conformational change, DNA motion and intramolecular stress release, shedding light on the mechanisms governing the relaxation of supercoiled DNA at the molecular level.  
    Keywords:Supercoiled DNA;DNA minicircle;DNA relaxation;oxDNA model;MD simulation   
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    Published:2024-03-29
  • Chao Wang,Yan-Li Zhou,Xiao Yang,Fan Wu,Meng-Bo Luo

    Corrected Proof
    DOI:10.1007/s10118-024-3103-y
    Abstract:The injection of a polymer chain into a small circular cavity under tangential self-propelled force is studied by using Langevin dynamics simulation. Results indicate that the injection dynamics of the active polymer shows strong correlation with the polymer conformation inside the cavity depending on the polymer rigidity (kb). The injection time τ varies nonmonotonously with increasing kb, and reaches its minimum at kb*. When kb is small (kb << kb*), the polymer is nearly random coil in the cavity, and spends a long time at the final stage of the injection process due to the large repulsion between monomers inside the cavity. When kb is moderate (kb ~ kb*), the part of polymer inside the cavity forms spiral configuration under the tangential active force, and the whole polymer moves synchronously with a constant velocity during the injection process, leading to a small injection time. When kb is large (kb >> kb*), the polymer is nearly straight at the initial stage of the injection process, and takes a long time to bend itself, leading to a large injection time.  
    Keywords:Active polymer;Injection;Dynamics;Simulation   
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    Published:2024-03-29
  • Bin Zhang,Zheng-Li Dou,Yong-Zheng Zhang,Qiang Fu,Kai Wu

    Corrected Proof
    DOI:10.1007/s10118-024-3101-0
    Abstract:Effective thermal transport across solid-solid interfaces, essential in thermal interface materials (TIMs), necessitates both optimal thixotropy and high thermal conductivity. The role of filler surface modification, a fundamental aspect of TIM fabrication, in influencing these properties is not fully understood. This study employs the use of a silane coupling agent (SCA) to modify alumina, integrating experimental approaches with molecular dynamics simulations, to elucidate the interface effects on thixotropy and thermal conductivity in polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS)-based TIMs. Our findings reveal that varying SCAs modify both interface binding energy and transition layer thickness. The interface binding energy restricts macromolecular segmental relaxation near the interface, hindering desirable thixotropy and bond line thickness. Conversely, the transition layer thickness at the interface positively influences thermal conductivity, facilitating phonon transport between the polymer and filler. Consequently, selecting an optimal SCA enables a balance between traditionally conflicting goals of high thermal conductivity and minimal bond line thickness, achieving an impressively low interface thermal resistance of just 2.45−4.29 K·mm2·W−1 at 40 psi.  
    Keywords:Thermal interface material;Surface modification;Thermal conductivity;Thixotropy;Interface thermal resistance   
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    Published:2024-03-18
  • Daria Pakuła,Bogna Sztorch,Eliza Romańczuk-Ruszuk,Bogdan Marciniec,Robert E. Przekop

    Corrected Proof
    DOI:10.1007/s10118-024-3095-7
    Abstract:Various sectors of the industry are searching for new materials with specific requirements, providing improved properties. The study presents novel composite materials based on polylactide that have been modified with the organosilicon compound, (3-thiopropyl)polysilsesquioxane (SSQ-SH). The SSQ-SH compound is a mixture of cage structures and not fully condensed random structures. The composite materials were obtained through injection moulding. The study includes a comprehensive characterization of the new materials that analyze their functional properties, such as rheology (MFR), mechanical strength (tensile strength, Charpy impact strength), and thermal properties. SEM microscopic photos were also taken to analyze the microstructure of the samples. The addition of a 5% by-weight organosilicon compound to polylactide resulted in a significant increase in MFR by 73.8% compared to the neat polymer. The greatest improvement in impact strength was achieved for the 5% SSQ-SH/PLA composite, increasing it by 32.0 kJ/m2 compared to PLA, which represents an increase of up to 187%. The conducted research confirms the possibility of modifying the properties of the polymer by employing organosilicon compounds.  
    Keywords:Octa(3-thiopropyl)silsesquioxane;8SH-POSS;Polylactide (PLA);Injection moulding;Composites   
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    Published:2024-03-07
  • Shuang-Cheng Li,Wei-Jia Zhou,Wen-Jie Wu,Jun Shao,Shui-Liang Chen,Hao-Qing Hou,Sheng Xiang

    Corrected Proof
    DOI:10.1007/s10118-024-3104-x
    Abstract:For a polymer/polymer dismissible blend with two crystallizable components, the crystallization behavior of different components and the reciprocal influences between different crystals are interesting and important, but did not investigate in detail. In this study, the L-poly(lactic acid)/polypropylene (PLLA/PP) blends with different weight ratios were prepared by melt mixing and the crystallization behavior of the blends were investigated. Results showed that the crystalline structures of PLLA and PP were not altered by the composition. For the crystallization of PLLA, both the diffusion of chain segments and crystallization rate were enhanced under the existence of PP crystals. For the crystallization of PP, its crystallization rate was depressed under the existence of amorphous PLLA molecular chains. When the PP crystallized from the existence of PLLA crystals, although the diffusion rate of PP was reduced by PLLA crystals, the nucleation positions were obviously enhanced, which accelerated the formation of PP crystals. This investigation would supply more basic data for the application of PLLA/PP blend.  
    Keywords:L-poly(lactic acid);Polypropylene;Blends;Crystallization behavior;Crystallization acceleration   
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    Published:2024-03-07
  • Jin-Tong Xue,Yang Bai,Li Peng,Xian-Bo Huang,Zhao-Yan Sun

    Corrected Proof
    DOI:10.1007/s10118-024-3099-3
    Abstract:The mechanical behavior of polymer networks is intrinsically correlated with the local chain topology and chain connectivity. In this study, we delve into this relationship through the lens of coarse-grained molecular dynamics (CG-MD) simulations. Our aim is to illuminate the intricate interplay between local topology and stress distribution within polymer monomers, cross-linkers, and various components with distinct cross-link connections, thereby elucidating their collective impact on the mechanical properties of polymer networks. We mainly focus on how specific local structures contribute to the overall mechanical response of the network. In particular, we employ local stress analysis to unravel the mechanics of these structures. Our findings reveal the diverse responses of individual components, such as junctions, strands, cross-linkers between junctions, and dangling chain ends, when subjected to stretching. Notably, we observe that these components exhibit varying degrees of deformation tolerance, underscoring the significance of their roles in determining the mechanical characteristics of the network. Our investigations highlight junctions as primary contributors to stress accumulation, and particles with higher local stress showing a stronger correlation between stress and Voronoi volume. Moreover, our results indicate that both strands and cross-linkers between junctions exhibit heightened stress levels as strand lengths decrease. This study enhances our understanding of the multifaceted factors governing the mechanical attributes of cross-linked polymer systems at the microstructural level.  
    Keywords:Local chain structure;Local stress;Molecular dynamics simulation   
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    Published:2024-03-07
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