Document Type

Thesis

Degree

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Materials Science and Engineering

First Advisor's Name

Dr. Arvind Agarwal

First Advisor's Committee Title

Co-Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

Dr. Benjamin Boesl

Second Advisor's Committee Title

Co-Committee Chair

Third Advisor's Name

Dr. Norman Munroe

Third Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Member

Keywords

Three-Dimensional Graphene Foam (3D GrF), Epoxy, Polymer Matrix Composite (PMC), Mechanical Properties, Flexural Strength, Damping Behavior, Electrical Conductivity, Strain Sensor, Gauge Factor

Date of Defense

3-27-2017

Abstract

Three-dimensional graphene foam (3D GrF) is an interconnected, porous structure of graphene sheets with excellent mechanical, electrical and thermal properties, making it a candidate reinforcement for polymer matrices. GrF’s 3D structure eliminates nanoparticle agglomeration and provides seamless pathways for electron travel. The objective of this work is to fabricate low density GrF reinforced epoxy composites with superior mechanical and electrical properties and study the underlying deformation mechanisms. Dip coating and mold casting fabrication methods are employed in order to tailor the microstructure and properties. The composite’s microstructure revealed good interfacial interaction. By adding mere 0.63 wt.% GrF, flexural strength was improved by 56%. The addition of 2 wt.% GrF showed a surge in glass transition temperature (56oC), improvement in damping behavior (150%), and electrical conductivity 11 orders of magnitude higher than pure epoxy. Dip coated and mold casted composites showed a gauge factor of ~2.4 indicating electromechanically robust composite materials.

Identifier

FIDC001819

Available for download on Monday, October 30, 2017

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