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Graphite–graphene hybrid filler system for high thermal conductivity of epoxy composites

  • Nayandeep K. Mahanta (a1), Marcio R. Loos (a2), Ica Manas Zlocozower (a3) and Alexis R. Abramson (a4)

The thermal conductivities of epoxy composites of mixtures of graphite and graphene in varying ratios were measured. Thermal characterization results showed unexpectedly high conductivities at a certain ratio filler ratio. This phenomenon was exhibited by samples with three different overall filler concentrations (graphene + graphite) of 7, 14, and 35 wt%. The highest thermal conductivity of 42.4 ± 4.8 W/m K (nearly 250 times the thermal conductivity of pristine epoxy) was seen for a sample with 30 wt% graphite and 5 wt% graphene when characterized using the dual-mode heat flow meter technique. This significant improvement in thermal conductivity can be attributed to the lowering of overall thermal interface resistance due to small amounts of nanofillers (graphene) improving the thermal contact between the primary microfillers (graphite). The synergistic effect of this hybrid filler system is lost at higher loadings of the graphene relative to graphite. Graphite and graphene mixed in the ratio of 6:1 yielded the highest thermal conductivities at three different filler loadings.

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Journal of Materials Research
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