Enhanced mechanical, thermal and adhesion properties of polysilsesquioxane spheres reinforced epoxy nanocomposite adhesives

Epoxy-based systems serve as excellent adhesives to join a wide range of substrates such as metal, ceramics, plastics, etc. The mechanical properties of such systems can be improved considerably by the addition of filler to the epoxy matrix. Herein, polymethylsilsesquioxane (PMS) and poly(methyl/vinyl)silsesquioxane (PMVS) nanosphere were synthesised by hydrolytic condensation of oraganosilane as a precursor in aqueous phase. The epoxy nanocomposite adhesives were prepared by adding different weight percentages (1–4 wt%) of the PS nanospheres. Tensile and compressive strength of the adhesive formulations were studied using the universal testing machine (UTM) and it was observed that the mechanical properties of the composites showed an increasing trend on increasing the filler loading. Adhesive strength of the epoxy composites on mild steel substrate was studied by conducting the lap shear test and EPV-4 exhibited a 31% increase in adhesive strength on the mild steel compared to the neat epoxy. Surface morphology of the epoxy composites were visualised from the SEM images and the composites also showed enhanced thermal conductivity. Higher mechanical and adhesive strength indicates the potential of the prepared nanocomposites to be used as an effective formulation in adhesive-based systems

Keywords: Epoxy resins, polysilsesquioxane, lap-shear test, thermal conductivity, adhesives, nanocomposites

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