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Supported Catalysis For In Situ Synthesis Of High Energy Density Nanocomposites

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Future pulsed-power capacitors will require dielectric materials having very large energy densities with operating voltages > 10 kV. The operating characteristics of current state-of-the-art pulsed-power capacitors which utilize either ceramics or polymers as dielectric materials fall significantly short of this goal. To address this researchers at Northwestern University have developed nanocomposites that combine inorganic constituents and polymer matrices. These new materials are formed via in situ propylene polymerization using a metallocene catalyst supported on ferroelectric oxide nanoparticles. Physical characterization has established that the nanoparticles are uniformly dispersed in a highly isotactic polypropylene matrix. Importantly these new nanocomposites have proven to be excellent insulators with energy densities comparable or exceeding values reported for ceramic polymer and composite dielectrics. These exciting new nanocomposites promise a new family of dielectric materials for future high energy capacitor applications. Applications: High energy storage in capacitor and insulator applications

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