Micelle-template synthesis of hollow silica spheres for improving water vapor permeability of waterborne polyurethane membrane

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Bao, Yan ; Wang, Tong ; Kang, Qiaoling ; Shi, Chunhua ; Ma, Jianzhong (2017)
  • Publisher: Nature Publishing Group
  • Journal: Scientific Reports, volume 7 (issn: 2045-2322, eissn: 2045-2322)
  • Related identifiers: doi: 10.1038/srep46638, pmc: PMC5399357
  • Subject: Article
    mesheuropmc: integumentary system

Hollow silica spheres (HSS) with special interior spaces, high specific surface area and excellent adsorption and permeability performance were synthesized via micelle-template method using cetyl trimethyl ammonium bromide (CTAB) micelles as soft template and tetraethoxysilane (TEOS) as silica precursor. SEM, TEM, FT-IR, XRD, DLS and BET-BJH were carried out to characterize the morphology and structure of as-obtained samples. The results demonstrated that the samples were amorphous with a hollow structure and huge specific surface area. The growth of HSS was an inward-growth mechanism along template. Notably, we have provided a new and interesting fundamental principle for HSS materials by precisely controlling the ethanol-to-water volume ratio. In addition, the as-obtained HSS were mixed with waterborne polyurethane (WPU) to prepare WPU/HSS composite membrane. Various characterizations (SEM, TEM, FT-IR and TGA) revealed the morphology, polydispersity and adherence between HSS and WPU. Performance tests showed that the introduction of HSS can improve the water vapor permeability of composite membrane, promoting its water resistance and mechanical performance at the same time.
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