Silver sulfide as a staining agent for scanning electron microscopy of nylon 6/MXD6 blends

Magniez, Kevin, Fox, Bronwyn L and Looney, Mark G 2009, Silver sulfide as a staining agent for scanning electron microscopy of nylon 6/MXD6 blends, Polymer international, vol. 58, no. 8, pp. 858-862, doi: 10.1002/pi.2599.

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Title Silver sulfide as a staining agent for scanning electron microscopy of nylon 6/MXD6 blends
Author(s) Magniez, Kevin
Fox, Bronwyn L
Looney, Mark G
Journal name Polymer international
Volume number 58
Issue number 8
Start page 858
End page 862
Total pages 5
Publisher John Wiley & Sons
Place of publication West Sussex, England
Publication date 2009-08
ISSN 0959-8103
Keyword(s) polymer blends
electron microscopy
domain morphology
Summary BACKGROUND: In transmission and scanning electron microscopy imaging, the ability to obtain sufficient contrast between the components of a blend when they are both of a similar chemical structure still remains problematic. This paper investigates the domain morphology of a polymer blend containing two polyamides, nylon 6 and the semi-aromatic polyamide poly(m-xylene adipamide) (MXD6), using scanning electron microscopy in backscattered electron imaging mode. The efficiency of three staining agents, ruthenium tetroxide, phosphotungstic acid and silver sulfide, in obtaining optimum phase contrast between the two polymers is discussed.
RESULTS: The use of silver sulfide as a staining agent was found to be a fast and reliable approach which required basic sample preparation and provided excellent compositional contrast between the phases present in the nylon 6/MXD6 blends compared to the other staining agents.
CONCLUSIONS: The technique described in this paper is believed to be a novel and versatile method that has the potential to further improve the ability to study complex polymer blends where one polymer contains an aromatic ring.
Language eng
DOI 10.1002/pi.2599
Field of Research 091209 Polymers and Plastics
Socio Economic Objective 970110 Expanding Knowledge in Technology
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
HERDC collection year 2009
Copyright notice ©2009, Society of Chemical Industry
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Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Centre for Material and Fibre Innovation
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