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Mechanical properties of graphene films enhanced by homo-telechelic functionalized polymer fillers via π-π Stacking interactions
journal contributionposted on 2015-01-01, 00:00 authored by Jizhen Zhang, Y Xu, L Cui, A Fu, Wenrong YangWenrong Yang, Colin BarrowColin Barrow, J Liu
© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. Most researches on graphene/polymer composites are focusing on improving the mechanical and electrical properties of polymers at low graphene content instead of paying attention to constructing graphene's macroscopic structures. In current study the homo-telechelic functionalized polyethylene glycols (FPEGs) were tailored with π-orbital-rich groups (namely phenyl, pyrene and di-pyrene) via esterification reactions, which enhanced the interaction between polyethylene glycol (PEG) molecules and chemical reduced graphene oxide (RGO) sheets. The π-π stacking interactions between graphene sheets and π-orbital-rich groups endowed the composite films with enhanced tensile strength and tunable electrical conductivity. The formation of graphene network structure mediated by the FPEGs fillers via π-π stacking non-covalent interactions should account for the experimental results. The experimental investigations were also complemented with theoretical calculation using a density functional theory. Atomic force microscope (AFM), scanning electron microscope (SEM), X-ray diffraction (XRD), nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), thermal gravimetric analysis (TGA), UV-vis and fluorescence spectroscopy were used to monitor the step-wise preparation of graphene composite films.