عنوان مقاله [English]
Hypothesis: Epoxy resins are one of the most prominent resins in the world. Many factors affect the mechanical properties of this family of polymers, but the effects of parameters such as molecular packing on mechanical properties are less investigated. The most important factor in molecular packing and mechanical properties is the chemical structure of the curing agent. Herein, we report the effect of aromatic structure of the curing agent on the molecular packing and mechanical properties of the cured epoxy resin.
Methods: The curing of the epoxy resin was performed by melting the curing agent and addition of the epoxy resin. To study the effect of curing agent structure, three different curing agents including meta-phenylenediamine (m-PDA), ortho-phenylenediamine (o-PDA) and 2,4-diamino toluene (2,4-DAT) were used. The molecular packing was studied by X-ray diffraction (XRD) technique. Also, the density measurements of cured epoxy resins were carried out using the Archimedes method and finally, the effect of molecular packing on the mechanical properties was investigated by tensile test.
Findings: The results obtained from XRD and tensile test measurements showed that there is a direct relationship between the molecular packing and mechanical strength which by increases in the molecular packing the tensile strength increased as well. By changing the curing agent from m-PDA to o-PDA, the molecular packing was increased and consequently, led to an increase in the tensile strength of the epoxies. In using 2,4-DAT as a curing agent, the molecular packing and hence the mechanical strength were decreased due to the steric hindrance of the methyl group.