A New Route to Highly Stretchable and Soft Inorganic–Organic Hybrid Elastomers Using Polydimethylsiloxane as Crosslinker of Epoxidized Natural Rubber

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Date
2021
Volume
306
Issue
11
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Publisher
New York, NY [u.a.] : Wiley InterScience
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Abstract

Sulfur or peroxide crosslinking is the most common and conventional method to develop elastomeric materials. A new approach to crosslink epoxidized natural rubber (ENR) by aminopropyl terminated polydimethylsiloxane (AT-PDMS) is described, intending to develop a new kind of hybrid organic–inorganic elastomers. The curing reaction is accelerated by using hydroquinone as a catalyst. The formation of the hybrid structure is evident from the appearance of two glass transition temperatures, at −1 and −120 °C, for the ENR and PDMS phases, respectively. The curing reaction is found to be of first order with respect to amine concentration with the estimated activation energy of ≈62 kJ mol−1. Comparing the mechanical properties to a typical ENR-sulfur system leads to the conclusion that the ENR/AT-PDMS hybrid structure is highly stretchable and soft, as demonstrated by its relatively higher strain at failure (up to ≈630%), and lower hardness and modulus values. The higher stretchability and soft nature of the material are achieved by introducing flexible PDMS chains during the curing process resulting to a hybrid elastomer networks. This kind of soft but robust materials can find several applications in diverse fields, such as soft robotics, flexible, and stretchable electronics.

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Keywords
epoxidized natural rubber, hybrid elastomer networks, mechanical properties, polydimethylsiloxane
Citation
Banerjee, S. S., Banerjee, S., Wießner, S., Janke, A., Heinrich, G., & Das, A. (2021). A New Route to Highly Stretchable and Soft Inorganic–Organic Hybrid Elastomers Using Polydimethylsiloxane as Crosslinker of Epoxidized Natural Rubber. 306(11). https://doi.org//10.1002/mame.202100380
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CC BY 4.0 Unported