Shape-memory polyurethane/multiwalled carbon nanotube fibers

Qinghao Meng, Jinlian Hu, Yong Zhu

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

96 Citations (Scopus)


Shape-memory polyurethane/multiwalled carbon nanotube (SMP-MWNT) composites with various multiwalled carbon nanotube (MWNT) contents were synthesized, and the corresponding SMP-MWNT fibers were prepared by melt spinning. The influence of the MWNT content on the spinnability, fracture morphology, thermal and mechanical properties, and shape-memory behavior of the shape-memory polymer was studied. The spinning ability of SMP-MWNTs decreased significantly with increasing MWNT content. When the MWNT content reached 8.0 wt %, the fibers could not be produced because of the poor rheological properties of the composites. The melt-blending, extrusion, and melt-spinning processes for the shape-memory fiber (SMF), particularly at low MWNT contents, caused the nanotubes to distribute homogeneously and preferentially align along the drawing direction of the SMF. The crystallization in the SMF was promoted at low MWNT contents because it acted as a nucleation agent. At high MWNT contents, however, the crystallization was hindered because the movement of the polyurethane chains was restricted. The homogeneously distributed and aligned MWNTs preserved the SMF with high tenacity and initial modulus. The recovery ratio and recovery force were also improved because the MWNTs helped to store the internal elastic energy during stretching and fixing.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)837-848
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Applied Polymer Science
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 15 Oct 2007


  • Nanocomposites
  • Polyurethanes
  • Stimuli-sensitive polymers

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Polymers and Plastics


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