Polymer Nanocomposites having a High Filler Content: Synthesis, Structures, Properties, and Applications

The recent development of nanoscale fillers, such as carbon nanotube, graphene, and nanocellulose, allows the functionality of polymer nanocomposites to be controlled and enhanced. However, conventional synthesis methods of polymer nanocomposites cannot maximise the reinforcement of these nanofillers at high filler content. Approaches to the synthesis of high content filler polymer nanocomposites are suggested to facilitate future applications. The fabrication methods address design of the polymer nanocomposite architecture, which encompass one, two, and three dimensional morphology. Factors that hamper the reinforcement of nanostructures, such as alignment, dispersion of filler as well as interfacial bonding between filler and polymer are outlined. Using suitable approaches, maximum potential reinforcement of nanoscale filler can be anticipated without limitations in orientation, dispersion, and the integrity of the filler particle-matrix interface. High filler content polymer composites containing emerging materials such as 2D transition metal carbides, nitrides, and carbonitrides (MXenes) are expected in the future.