Polychloroprene behaviour in a marine environment: Role of silica fillers

Type Article
Date 2017-05
Language English
Author(s) Tchalla Siwavi Tatiana1, 2, Le Gac Pierre-YvesORCID1, Maurin R.3, Creac'Hcadec R.2
Affiliation(s) 1 : IFREMER, Serv Mat & Struct, Ctr Brest BP70, F-29280 Plouzane, France.
2 : ENSTA Bretagne, FRE CNRS 3744, Inst Rech Dupuy de Lome, F-29200 Brest, France.
3 : EDF R&D, Mat & Mech Components Div, Grp T28, EDF Lab Renardieres, Ave Renardieres, F-77818 Moret Sur Loing, France.
Source Polymer Degradation And Stability (0141-3910) (Elsevier Sci Ltd), 2017-05 , Vol. 139 , P. 28-37
DOI 10.1016/j.polymdegradstab.2017.03.011
WOS© Times Cited 10
Keyword(s) Polychloroprene, Seawater, Silica filler, Hydrolysis
Abstract Polychloroprene rubbers are widely used in marine structures and often filled with silica in order to increase mechanical properties. The presence of silica fillers leads to a complex degradation of the material. This study aims to understand the deeper degradation mechanisms involved when a silica filled polychloroprene is used in sea water. To do so, 4 polychloroprene rubbers filled with different amounts of silica (from 0 to 45 phr) were aged in natural sea water for 6 months at temperatures ranging from 25 to 60 °C. Moreover, a natural rubber with similar formulation was also considered in order to evaluate the role of the chlorine atom in the degradation. . The chemistry and mechanics of the rubber degradation were also studied. In the presence of water and silica fillers, a large decrease in rubber stiffness was observed. This was attributed to the breakage of hydrogen bonds involved in the interaction between the silica and chloroprene matrix and the process is reversible. In the meantime, silica undergoes hydrolysis that leads to silanol formation and so an increase in rubber stiffness when water is removed; this process is irreversible.
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