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Fast assembly of bio-inspired nanocomposite films


This paper presents a spin-coating layer-by-layer assembly process to prepare multilayered polyelectrolyte-clay nanocomposites. This method allows for the fast production of films with controlled layered structure. The preparation of a 100-bilayer film with a thickness of about 330 nm needs less than 1 h, which is 20 times faster than conventional dip-coating processes maintaining the same hardness and modulus values. For validation of this technique, nanocomposite films with thicknesses up to 0.5 µm have been created with the common dip self-assembly and with the spin coating layer-by-layer assembly technique from a poly(diallyldimethylammonium)chloride (PDDA) solution and a suspension of a smectite clay mineral (Laponite). Geometrical characteristics (thickness, roughness, and texture) as well as mechanical characteristics (hardness and modulus) of the clay-polyelectrolyte films have been studied. The spin-coated nanocomposite films exhibit clearly improved mechanical properties (hardness 0.4 GPa, elastic modulus 7 GPa) compared to the “pure” polymer film, namely a sixfold increase in hardness and a 17-fold increase in Young’s modulus.


Vertlib, Viatcheslav and Dietiker, Marianne and Plötze, Michael and Yezek, Lee and Spolenak, Ralph and Puzrin, Alexander

Index Terms:

geomechanics; GeomechanicsGroup; clay; ClayGroup; laponite; clay-polyelectrolyte film; Dietiker, Marianne; Plotze, Michael; Puzrin, Alexander; Spolenak, Ralph; Vertlib, Viatcheslav; Yezek, Lee

Further Information:

Date published: 2008