Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are considered as very promising nanomaterials for polymeric nanocomposites because of both the efficiency and the high conductivity. In order to overcome difficulties associated with mechanical dispersion ofthe CNTs a new latex compounding technique was developed. This technique is based on the mixing of aqueous CNTs suspensions with a variety of rubber lattices followed by simultaneous coagulation in a vigorous shear and elongational stream. In order to compare the efficiency of the new mixing and dispersion technique commercially available CNTs incorporated into NBR, NR and SBR matrices by latex compounding and conventional melt mixing. The resulting compounds were were investigated for morphological features, dispersion and distribution of the CNTs and a representative set of mechanical properties. The samples obtained by latex compounding showed much better filler dispersion in the rubbers under consideration. The electrical measurement demonstrated significantly lower percolation threshold values. This group of compounds showed significant higher Young*s Moduli, stress values in the low strain regime, tensile properties as compared with the one obtained by mechanical melt mixing. This way latex compounding of CNTs is becoming a promising dispersing technique that leads to better reinforced rubber compounds as compared with other mixing methods.
Keywords: CNTs, mechanical reinforcement, Latex Compounding, Payne effect,
electrical conductivity, NBR, NR, SBR