A new generation of high-performance epoxy nanocomposites with good flame retardancy and other desirable properties have been developed by EU-funded project NEWEPOXY (New generation high-performance fire retardant epoxy nanocomposites: structure-property relationship). Researchers used two different approaches to develop halogen-free high-performance epoxy materials and epoxy nanocomposites loaded with functional filler. The first approach involved synthesizing new and sustainable epoxy monomers with improved flame retardancy. The second prepared multifunctional graphene oxide (GO) and layered double hydroxide (LDH) hybrids suitable for modification of standard bisphenol A epoxy resins. A renewable biobased feedstock was used to synthesize a number of new sustainable epoxy monomers in this study. They provided the cured expoxy materials with improved flame retardancy, suppressed smoke production during burning and improved mechanical properties. Moreover, one of the biobased expoxy resins displayed good dielectric properties. Scientists also prepared novel multifunctional organic-inorganic hybrids as nanofillers to modify epoxy resins. These hybrids were based on the further functionalization of GO and LDH to achieve advantages such as high effectiveness, mild reaction conditions and scalability. The GO hybrid obtained could be used to functionalise bisphenol A epoxy resin to give novel epoxy nanocomposites. A novel multifunctional compound was also designed, synthesized and used to modify LDH. This molecule can be introduced into the layered double hydroxide through anion exchange to give a novel functionalised hybrid for use as a multifunctional filler to improve flame retardancy and other properties. NEWPOXY will have a major impact on current epoxy chemistry and technology while shedding light on new developments in high-performance biobased epoxy monomers and high-performance epoxy nanocomposites.
Epoxy resins, fire retardant, graphene oxide, layered double hydroxide