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Influence of Dispersion Methods on the Mechanical, Thermal and Rheological Properties of HTPB-based Nanocomposites: Possible Binders for Composite Propellants

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The present study reports on the methods of preparation for HTPB-clay nanocomposites and their mechanical, thermal and rheological properties for their functional utility as an improved binder system for composite propellants. HTPB-clay nanocomposites were prepared by dispersing organoclay Cloisite 30B (1-3 wt.%) in the polymer matrix by magnetic stirring and high shear mixing. Critical parameters like time, temperature and RPM were optimized. These nanocomposites were cured with toluene diisocyanate in the presence of the cure catalyst DBTDL. The dispersion of the nanoclay was evaluated by using small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) and energy dispersive X-ray (EDX) spectroscopy. EDX suggested homogeneous distribution while SAXS revealed partial exfoliation of the clay particles in the polymer matrix. Superior dispersion of the nanoclay was obtained by high shear mixing. The tensile properties of the nanocomposites prepared by high shear mixing showed 10-20% more strength and elastic modulus. The nanocomposites showed thermal stability higher than the pristine HTPB. Swelling behavior revealed increased cross linking, and the rheological behavior exhibited higher viscosity of the nanocomposites. In addition, the clay amount was increased up to 10 wt.% and its effect on the mechanical, thermal and swelling behavior was observed. Theoretical performance predictions of composite propellants with nanocomposites revealed their possible functional utility.
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Bibliogr. 63 poz., rys., tab.
  • High Energy Materials Research Laboratory Sutarwadi, Pune 411 012, India
  • High Energy Materials Research Laboratory Sutarwadi, Pune 411 012, India
  • High Energy Materials Research Laboratory Sutarwadi, Pune 411 012, India
  • High Energy Materials Research Laboratory Sutarwadi, Pune 411 012, India
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