Journal of Metals, Materials and Minerals

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PLA/PBS blends in various blend ratio (70:30, 50:50, and 30:70 wt%) containing calcium carbonate nanoparticles (nano-CaCO3) of 1 and 5 phr were prepared. Tensile tests with 3 strain rates and Izod impact test were carried out in order to investigate the influence of CaCO3 nanoparticles on mechanical behavior of nanocomposites under different deformation rates. Morphology and compatibility of nanocomposites were studied using SEM and DSC. It is found that PBS/PLA 50/50 wt% blends exhibited the highest percentage of elongation at break due to co-continuous phases as seen in SEM. CaCO3 nanoparticles were dispersed uniformly in polymer matrix although they showed agglomeration sizes in micro-scale. CaCO3 nanoparticles of 1 phr increased toughness of polymer matrix as evident in higher elongation at break in all straining rates and higher impact strength. This indicates lubricating effect of CaCO3 nanoparticles during the deformation of polymer samples. Nevertheless, adding CaCO3 nanoparticles of 5 phr showed positive effect to improve mechanical properties for brittle polymer matrix since they offered better molecular mobility to withstand applied stresses. However, NPCC of 5 phr gave negative effect on ductile matrix or low strain rates. This would be attributed to loss of molecular mobility during the deformation from nano-CaCO3 agglomeration.

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