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Thermal conductivity of tunable lamellar aluminum oxide/polymethyl methacrylate hybrid composites

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  09 May 2012

Ran Chen
Affiliation:
Department of Chemistry, and Institute for Research in Materials, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, B3H 4R2
Michel B. Johnson
Affiliation:
Institute for Research in Materials, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, B3H 4R2
Kevin P. Plucknett
Affiliation:
Institute for Research in Materials, and Department of Process Engineering and Applied Science, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, B3H 4R2
Mary Anne White*
Affiliation:
Departments of Chemistry, and Physics and Atmospheric Science, and Institute for Research in Materials, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, B3H 4R2
*
a)Address all correspondence to this author. e-mail: Mary.Anne.White@dal.ca
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Abstract

We prepared hybrid aluminum oxide (Al2O3)/polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) composites with tunable lamellae, produced through a two-step synthetic method: fabrication of inorganic scaffolds via ice-templating, followed by organic infiltration polymerization as a substitute for the sublimed ice. The final lamellar hybrid products show anisotropic physical properties. The thermal conductivity in both principal directions was determined for three different samples as a function of temperature (∼3 K–300 K). Typical room temperature thermal conductivities are in the range of 0.5–2.5 W/(m K), depending on the composition and direction. Across the lamellae, the thermal conductivity is well modeled by a linear series of thermal resistors, and along the lamellae it is well represented by parallel thermal resistors of continuous slabs of PMMA and ∼200-μm long slabs of Al2O3, joined by PMMA. From the thermal conductivity perspective, the Al2O3/PMMA composite is a nacre mimic.

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Articles
Copyright
Copyright © Materials Research Society 2012

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