Samples of aqueous cellulose nanofibers were combined with an acidic aniline solution and an oxidizer to achieve in-situ polymerization of aniline. To obtain a higher degree of flexibility, a plasticizer was added in some instances. Samples with varying mass ratios of nanofibers and PANI were prepared. Tensile tests and four-probe electrical conductivity measurements were performed. Results showed that samples with the most nanofibers were strong and quite rigid, while samples with more polyaniline (PANI) displayed a higher degree of conductivity, but were very brittle. The samples with a mix of nanofibers, polyaniline and plasticizer displayed a combination of conductivity and some flexibility, but future studies are needed to optimize the formulations.
This research was supported by the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP).
In-situ Polymerization of Polyaniline on Cellulose Nanofibers: Effects on Electrical Conductivity and Tensile Properties.
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