A simple and environmental friendly synthetic method for the preparation of polymer/clay nanocomposite was introduced. Poly(methyl methacrylate)/ montmorillonite nanocomposites with a high filling of clay were obtained by one step in situ redox polymerization in aqueous dispersion. Triethanolamine hydrochloride was used as intercalative modifier for montmorillonite via ion exchange reaction to introduce hydroxyl groups on the surface of montmorillonite layers which generated free radicals to initiate polymerization reaction with ceric ions. Exfoliation or intercalation structures are related to the clay content of nanocomposites and are evidenced by both X-ray diffraction spectroscopy (XRD) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). Characterization results of extracted nanocomposite indicate the existence of polymer chain on the surface of montmorillonite layers. Effect of concentration of triethanolamine hydrochloride on the structure of poly(methyl methacrylate) nanocomposites was also investigated.
Keywords: Ceric ion, in situ redox polymerization, montmorillonite, nanocomposites, poly(methyl methacrylate), triethanolamine hydrochloride
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