Surface molecular degradation of 3D glass polymer composite under low earth orbit simulated space environment

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Epoxy resin reinforced with 3D parabeam glass fibre was subjected to low earth orbit (LEO) simulation conditions comprising ultra high vacuum, temperature cycling (TC), and ultraviolet (UV) radiation and atomic oxygen (AO) bombardment. Inspection of the same composite using only a selection of these hazardous conditions provided comparison measures to identify the effect of each condition on the surface degradation of the resin composite. Each of the individually selected conditions showed a different degradation mechanism that is accelerated by the presence of other conditions. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry (ToF-SIMS) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) were used to provide surface information. The resin composite samples suffered surface oxidation that increased the oxygen content to 17.24% in comparison with the untreated sample (only 14.2%). The samples that were treated with AO showed higher C-O and C=O functional groups on the surface in comparison with the rest of the samples (as indicated by XPS). Molecular information (from ToF-SIMS) showed that surface oxidation differs with different conditions and in comparison with the use of all conditions. All treated samples were shown to suffer significant chain scission and loss of volatiles as a result of the LEO conditions. The extent of the chain scission reaction for each condition can be indicated by the extent of the reduction of the relative concentration of the aliphatic hydrocarbon ions. The relative intensity of the C(4)H(11)N(4)O(2)(+) ion showed that AO bombardment accelerated the oxidation of the surface. The AO effect is doubled when UV and TC are also present. SEM results indicated that sample surfaces were eroded and roughened upon exposure to LEO conditions. Presence of AO and UV in the LEO conditions introduced white deposits onto the surface, believed to be crosslinked formations.
Publisher
ELSEVIER SCI LTD
Issue Date
2010-06
Language
English
Article Type
Article
Keywords

HYPERTHERMAL ATOMIC OXYGEN; ION MASS-SPECTROMETRY; ULTRAVIOLET-RADIATION; RESIN; BEHAVIOR; EXPOSURE; ENERGY; TIME

Citation

POLYMER DEGRADATION AND STABILITY, v.95, no.6, pp.987 - 996

ISSN
0141-3910
DOI
10.1016/j.polymdegradstab.2010.03.013
URI
http://hdl.handle.net/10203/98973
Appears in Collection
AE-Journal Papers(저널논문)
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