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Hybrid materials based on functionalised epoxy resin networks

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Purpose ‐ The purpose of this paper is to describe how sol-gel synthesised silica particles are used to modify the characteristics (especially the thermal and mechanical properties) of either an epoxy resin (ER) or a -COOH-functionalised ER (FER) substrate. In the systems studied here, spherical silica particles are embedded in ER or FER thermosetting polymeric substrates for producing translucent solid materials. There arise covalent unions between the SiO2 silanol surface groups of the particles and the functionalised FER ends, thus rendering SiO2-FER core-shell compounds. Design/methodology/approach ‐ The characterisation results confirm the affinity existing between ER and SiO2 particles as well as the existence of chemical bonds at the interface between the silica and FER phases. Findings ‐ An efficient and durable application against corrosion of metallic materials has been developed through the preparation and application of thin surface films made of finely disseminated SiO2 colloidal particles, which are trapped inside either FER or unfunctionalised ER epoxy resin polymer networks. The results of this test indicate that the anticorrosive performances of FER, SiO2-ER and SiO2-FER coating films are higher than that related to the ER coating alone. Practical implications ‐ These silica/ER hybrid materials can be employed as anticorrosive coatings of metallic substrates in commercial appliances, industrial devices and protection of artistic works, such as metal sculptures. Originality/value ‐ Preparation of organic-inorganic hybrid materials of enhanced thermal and mechanical properties against corrosion. Functionalisation of an ER polymer network resulted in the improvement of the anticorrosive properties of the sole ER of departure while showing very good corrosion endurance.
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Keywords: Coatings; Corrosion resistance; Epoxy resins; Polymers; Substrates

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: July 6, 2010

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