Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



Document Type



The overall objective of the research presented here is to understand the nanoscopic and microscopic structures that exist in dispersions of laponite and montmorillonite in poly(ethylene oxide), (PEO) and to correlate their shear responses with the final structure and properties of multilayered nanocomposite films prepared from these dispersions. These structures were examined as a function of polymer molecular weight, polymer and clay concentrations, and type of clay used to prepare the nanocomposites. A sequence of shear and elongational rheological measurements is used to provide a more complete physical picture on the structure of polymer-clay hydrogels, while a combination of techniques such microscopy (SEM, AFM, PLOM), XRD, DSC, TGA, DMA is used to study the structure and thermo-mechanical properties of the multilayered nanocomposite films. It was found that polymer molecular weight, polymer and clay concentrations, and the aspect-ratio of clay platelets strongly influence the rheology of nanocomposite dispersions as well as crystallinity, toughness and thermal properties of solid nanocomposite films prepared from such dispersions.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Secure the entire work for patent and/or proprietary purposes for a period of one year. Student has submitted appropriate documentation which states: During this period the copyright owner also agrees not to exercise her/his ownership rights, including public use in works, without prior authorization from LSU. At the end of the one year period, either we or LSU may request an automatic extension for one additional year. At the end of the one year secure period (or its extension, if such is requested), the work will be released for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

William H. Daly



Included in

Chemistry Commons