Some Aspects of Thermal Transport across the Interface between Graphene and Epoxy in Nanocomposites

Y Wang and CH Yang and QX Pei and YY Zhang, ACS APPLIED MATERIALS & INTERFACES, 8, 8272-8279 (2016).

DOI: 10.1021/acsami.6b00325

Owing to the superior thermal properties of graphene, graphene- reinforced polymer nanocomposites hold great potential as the thermal interface materials (TIMs) dissipating heat for electronic packages. However, this application is greatly hindered by the high thermal resistance at the interface between graphene and polymer. In this paper, some important aspects of the improvement of the thermal transport across the interface between graphene and epoxy in graphene-epoxy nanocomposites, including the effectiveness of covalent and noncovalent functionalization, isotope doping, and acetylenic linkage in graphene are systematically investigated using molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. The simulation results show that the covalent and noncovalent functionalization techniques could considerably reduce the graphene-epoxy interfacial thermal resistance in the nanocomposites. Among different covalent functional groups, butyl is more effective than carboxyl and hydroxyl in reducing the interfacial thermal resistance. Different noncovalent functional molecules, including 1-pyrenebutyl, 1-pyrenebutyric acid, and 1-pyrenebutylamine, yield a similar amount of reductions. Moreover, it is found that the graphene-epoxy interfacial thermal resistance is insensitive to the carbon isotope doping in graphene, while it can be reduced moderately by replacing the sp2 bonds in graphene with acetylenic linkages.

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