FURI | Summer 2021

Effects of Crosslinker Molecular Weight on Mechanoresponsive Polymer Nanocomposites

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Polymer nanocomposites are the subject of continual promising research due to their multifunctionality and tunability in a wide range of consumer and industrial materials. This research project aims to improve the performance of a previously researched nanocomposite that fluoresces when damaged. The material stress required to provide this damage detection may be tuned to practical levels by varying the molecular weight of the amine crosslinker. Such a material could be used in automotive and aerospace manufacturing or building materials as an early warning system to indicate the need for repair or replacement of failing parts before humans are at risk.

Student researcher

Andrew Richards

Chemical engineering

Hometown: Gilbert, Arizona, United States

Graduation date: Spring 2023