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Applied Nanotech Holdings (AN) say they have achieved a greater than 40 percent improvement in flexural strength and greater than 30 percent improvement in tensile strength and modulus for their vinyl ester/carbon nanotube composites in the base resin form.
They say the improvements were obtained through the chemical and mechanical modification as well as the functionalisation of carbon nanotubes in order for them to be accepted and integrated properly into the vinyl ester matrix.
According to AN, they have made significant progress in this development of vinyl esters, particularly for use in fibreglass reinforced plastics (FRP). They claim that many have tried adding carbon nanotubes to make vinyl ester-based materials stiffer, lighter, and stronger, but results have been mixed, due to the challenges in reinforcing vinyl ester resins with nanomaterials because of some key technical issues. Furthermore, the properties of these new vinyl ester/carbon nanotube composites have historically not been easily transferable to FRPs, but by using its new composite, AN explain they have achieved a 31 percent improvement in the flexural strength and 20 percent improvement in the flexural modulus of the final glass FRP composite.
“There exists a very positive and defined market opportunity for this technology. By extending the improvements of mechanical properties in our vinyl ester base resin to FRP composites, our carbon nanotube reinforced vinyl ester resins will further reduce the weight of composite materials in these applications while maintaining adequate strength,” said Dr. Zvi Yaniv, Chief Executive Officer of AN.
Vinyl ester materials are used in a variety of industries and AN say they are the fastest growing segment of thermosetting resins because of their combined inherent toughness with outstanding heat and chemical resistance. Vinyl esters are thought to be the next generation replacements of existing thermosetting resins such as unsaturated polyesters. They further this by saying that the foremost application of vinyl esters is in glass reinforced laminates for corrosion resistant equipment and parts.
“Building on our recent successes in sporting goods and defence applications, we will pursue customers and strategic partners in other markets served by this potentially breakthrough technology, leveraging our position of strength to gain traction in new and different sectors,” commented Mr. Doug Baker, Chief Executive Officer of AN.
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