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Interfacial Process Design

Immobilization of metallic nanoparticles on polymer surfaces during injection molding

Aim of the project is the development of a new method for the immobilization of nanoparticles on polymer surfaces during the injection molding process. Under high temperatures during injection molding a polymer can be surface modified in such a way that a further reactive functional polymer is organized and bound on the surface. The modified surface may act as host for nanoparticles which are immobilized within the network close to the surface.

The immobilization is a complex process linked to interactions between nanoparticles and polar groups of the further polymer (charge bridges) as well as to non polar groups (van der Waals). Experiments show that the nanoparticles located on the polymer surface are accessible for molecules or ions in the surroundings. Subject of the project is at first the understanding of these processes.

 

Fig. Modified polymer surface as host for nanoparticles

Polymer - Biopolymer interfaces: Biocompatibilization of synthetic polymer surfaces

For medical, biological applications and in the food section, respectively, the characteristics of synthetic polymer materials are often unsuitable, because they only show less wettability or biocompatibility. These disadvantages can be balanced by a permanent surface modification with special biopolymers during injection molding.

The main focal point is on development of in-situ measurements during injection molding process to chart type and quantity of new chemical bonds in between polymer-biopolymer interfaces, kinetic data under molding conditions and subsequent correlation of microscopic and macroscopic adhesion properties.

 

Fig. Surface modification during reactive injection molding