Novel CuCo2O4/graphitic carbon nitride nanohybrids: Highly effective catalysts for reducing CO generation and fire hazards of thermoplastic polyurethane nanocomposites.J Hazard Mater. 2015 Aug 15; 293:87-96.JH
Novel spinel copper cobaltate (CuCo2O4)/graphitic carbon nitride (g-C3N4) (named C-CuCo2O4) nanohybrids with different weight ratios of g-C3N4 to CuCo2O4 were successfully synthesized via a facile hydrothermal method. Then the nanohybrids were added into the thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) matrix to prepare TPU nanocomposites using a master batch-melt compounding approach. Morphological analysis indicated that CuCo2O4 nanoparticles were uniformly distributed on g-C3N4 nanosheets. Thermal analysis revealed that C-CuCo2O4-7 (proportion of g-C3N4 to CuCo2O4 of 93/7) was an optimal nanohybrid for the properties improvement of TPU. Incorporation of C-CuCo2O4-7 into TPU led to significant improvements in the onset decomposition temperature, temperature at maximal mass loss rate and char yields. The heat release rate and total heat release of TPU/C-CuCo2O4-7 decreased by 37% and 31.3%, respectively, compared with those of pure TPU. Furthermore, the amounts of pyrolysis gaseous products, including combustible volatiles and carbon monoxide (CO), were remarkably reduced, whereas, non-flammable gas (carbon dioxide) increased. Excellent dispersion of C-CuCo2O4-7 in TPU host was achieved, due to the synergistic effect between g-C3N4 and CuCo2O4. Enhancements in the thermal stability and flame retardancy were attributed to the explanations that g-C3N4 nanosheets showed the physical barrier effect and catalytic nitrogen monoxide (NO) decomposition, and that CuCo2O4 catalyzes the reaction of CO with NO and increased char residues.