Improving the adhesion to polymeric materials is of considerable industrial importance in assembly of mechanical structures, composite materials (large lightweight structures, e.g. aeroplanes, trains and wind turbine blades), barrier coatings (metal coatings on polymeric materials), biomaterials, and packaging (lamination with aluminium, paper or polymeric materials). In particular the high mechanical strengths of composite materials require the adhesive strength. Improving the adhesion to polymeric materials can be achieved by adding chemical functional groups and micro- or nano-scale roughness on the surfaces. Among several surface modification techniques for adhesion improvement, atmospheric pressure plasma surface treatment is attractive due to its:
- applicability to a variety of substrates
- easy scaling-up
- low equipment cost
However, a full understanding of the molecular interactions that take place at the plasma-surface boundary during treatment remains elusive.
Scope of the project
This project studies the surface treatment of polymeric materials and the resulting adhesion improvement achievable with atmospheric pressure plasmas. The considered polymeric materials include general plastics (polyethylene (PE) etc.), engineering plastics (polyester etc.), and polymeric carbons (glassy carbon and carbon fibre).
The project is funded by grants from Danish Technical Research Council (Statens Teknisk Videnskablige Forskningsråd (STVF) nr. 26-04-0251), and the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation through the Danish Proof of Concept Fund Scheme (nr. 09-076196).
Polyethylene fibres (see "Carbon fibres")
Fibre-reinforced polymer composites
Gereral overview was presented in:
- the poster Adhesive improvement of carbon fibres (CF) and glass fibre reinforced polyester (GFRP) by atmospheric pressure plasma at the Energy conference, Risø DTU, 9 October 2007
- the article Plasma surface modification at atmospheric pressure, by Yukihiro Kusano, Surf. Eng. 25(6) (2009) 415-416.