Microanalysis Techniques for the Investigation of Interphases Formed between Thermoset and Thermoplastic Polymers: Scanning Electron Microscopy and Energy Dispersive X-Ray Analysis
Prepreg resin systems are typically of complex composition and require very specific manufacturing conditions. These characteristics restrict the use of some commonly used micro analysis techniques. This paper investigates the use of low acceleration voltage scanning electron microscopy and energy dispersive x-ray analysis for the characterization of diffused polymer interfaces. It is shown that, by operating at the dynamic charge balance, high resolution secondary electron images of polymer interfaces can be obtained and that conductive coating is not required. In addition, the effect of acceleration voltage on the interaction volume in EDX analysis is discussed using Monte Carlo simulation. X-ray intensity measurements in combination with afore mentioned Monte Carlo simulation is used to define practically obtainable spatial resolution limits. It is shown that by reducing the acceleration voltage below 5kV spatial resolution higher the 500nm can be obtained.
S.M. Sapuan, F. Mustapha, D.L. Majid, Z. Leman, A.H.M. Ariff, M.K.A. Ariffin, M.Y.M. Zuhri, M.R. Ishak and J. Sahari
M. T. Heitzmann et al., "Microanalysis Techniques for the Investigation of Interphases Formed between Thermoset and Thermoplastic Polymers: Scanning Electron Microscopy and Energy Dispersive X-Ray Analysis", Key Engineering Materials, Vols. 471-472, pp. 309-314, 2011