Polymer, Vol.44, No.17, 5023-5030, 2003
Dielectric spectroscopy on melt processed polycarbonate - multiwalled carbon nanotube composites
Complex permittivity and related AC conductivity measurements in the frequency range between 10(-4) and 10(7) Hz are presented for composites of polycarbonate (PC) filled with different amounts of multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWNT) varying in the range between 0.5 and 5 wt%. The composites were obtained by diluting a PC based masterbatch containing 15 wt% MWNT by melt mixing using a Micro Compounder. From DC conductivity measurements it was found that for samples processed at a mixing screw speed of 150 rpm for 5 min, the percolation occurs at a threshold concentration (p(c)) between 1.0 and 1.5 wt% MWNT. For concentrations of MWNT near the percolation threshold, the processing conditions (screw speed and mixing time) were varied. The differences in the dispersion of the MWNT in the PC matrix could be detected in the complex permittivity and AC conductivity spectra, and have been explained by changes in p(c). The AC conductivity and permittivity spectra are discussed in terms of charge carrier diffusion on percolation clusters and resistor-capacitor composites. (C) 2003 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.