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Reduction of the elongation at break of thermoplastic polyolefins through melt blending with polylactide and the influence of the amount of compatibilizers and the viscosity ratios of the blend components on phase morphology and mechanics

: Vogt, C.; Endres, H.-J.; Bühring, J.; Menzel, H.


Polymer Engineering and Science 56 (2016), No.8, pp.905-913
ISSN: 0032-3888
ISSN: 1548-2634
Journal Article
Fraunhofer WKI ()

The objective of this work is the synthesis of a polypropylene/ethylene-propylene-rubber (TPO)/polylactide (PLA)/compatibilizer (PVM) blend to reduce the elongation at break of TPO by blending TPO with brittle PLA. Three TPO types with different viscosities were melt blended with PLA and an ethylene/n-butylacrylate/glycidyl methacrylate terpolymer (PVM) as reactive compatibilizer. All blends had a constant PLA amount of 30 wt%. Two parameters were varied in the experiments, viscosity of the TPO types, and amount of PVM used in the blends. Both parameters played important roles in reducing the nominal elongation at break compared to pure TPO foils and influencing the phase morphology of extruded blend foils. The nominal elongation at break could be reduced by 100-150% through blending TPO with PLA and PVM. Characterization regarding the blend morphology, especially the size and shape of the dispersed PLA phase in the TPO matrix was done by Environmental Scanning Electron Microscopy (ESEM) images. Investigations of the morphology showed that size and shape of dispersed PLA phases are dependent on the viscosity ratios of the blend components and on the amount of compatibilizer in the blend. AFM images of the polymer blends reveal soft rubbery layers around the dispersed PLA phases.