Nanomechanical mapping of carbon black reinforced natural rubber by atomic force microscopy

Toshio Nishi, Hideyuki Nukaga, So Fujinami, Ken Nakajima

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    28 Citations (Scopus)


    Atomic force microscopy (AFM) has the advantage of obtaining mechanical properties as well as topographic information at the same time. By analyzing force-distance curves measured over two-dimensional area using Hertzian contact mechanics, Young's modulus mapping was obtained with nanometer-scale resolution. Furthermore, the sample deformation by the force exerted was also estimated from the force-distance curve analyses. We could thus reconstruct a real topographic image by incorporating apparent topographic image with deformation image. We applied this method to carbon black reinforced natural rubber to obtain Young's modulus distribution image together with reconstructed real topographic image. Then we were able to recognize three regions; rubber matrix, carbon black (or bound rubber) and intermediate regions. Though the existence of these regions had been investigated by pulsed nuclear magnetic resonance, this paper would be the first to report on the quantitative evaluation of the interfacial region in real space.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)35-41
    Number of pages7
    JournalChinese Journal of Polymer Science (English Edition)
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 2007 Jan 1


    • AFM
    • Carbon black
    • Force-distance curve
    • Natural rubber
    • Young's modulus

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Chemical Engineering(all)
    • Organic Chemistry
    • Polymers and Plastics


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