Dielectric breakdown strength of epoxy bimodal-polymer-brush-grafted core functionalized silica nanocomposites

Suvi Virtanen, Timothy Michael Krentz, J. Nelson, Linda Schadler, Michael Bell, Brian Benicewicz, Henrik Hillborg, Su Zhao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

70 Scopus citations


The central goal of dielectric nanocomposite design is to create a large interfacial area between the matrix polymer and nanofillers and to use it to tailor the properties of the composite. The interface can create sites for trapping electrons leading to increased dielectric breakdown strength (DBS). Nanoparticles with a bimodal population of covalently anchored molecules were created using ligand engineering. Electrically active short molecules (oligothiophene or ferrocene) and matrix compatible long poly(glycidyl methacrylate) (PGMA) chains comprise the bimodal brush. The dielectric breakdown strength was evaluated from recessed samples and dielectric spectroscopy was used to study the dielectric constant and loss as a function of frequency. The dielectric breakdown strength and permittivity increased considerably with only 2 wt% filler loading while the dielectric loss remained comparable to the reference epoxy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number6783048
Pages (from-to)563-570
Number of pages8
JournalIEEE Transactions on Dielectrics and Electrical Insulation
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2014


  • Nanotechnology
  • diele ctric materials.
  • epoxy resins
  • nonhomogeneous media

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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