Effect of filler size and concentration on the structure and properties of poly(vinylidene fluoride)/BaTiO 3 nanocomposites
The effect of filler size and content in the thermal, mechanical, and electrical response of poly(vinylidene fluoride) (PVDF)/BaTiO 3 nanocomposites has been investigated. Dielectric constant increases significantly with increasing filler content and decreasing filler size. Space charge effects at the interface between BaTiO 3 and PVDF strongly influence the dielectric response. The electroactive β-phase of PVDF is nucleated by the presence of the ceramic filler, the effect being strongly dependent on filler size and independent on filler content. This filler/matrix interaction is also responsible for the variations observed in the activation energy of the thermal degradation of the polymer. Smaller particles lead to larger relative contact areas and are responsible for the main variations observed in the thermal, mechanical, and electrical properties of the composites.