Nano-matrix structure of a graft-copolymer consisting of deproteinized natural rubber (DPNR) and polystyrene (PS) was observed through field-emission scanning microscopy combined with a focused gallium (Ga) ion beam (FIB-SEM). The graft-copolymer was carefully stained with osmium tetraoxide for more than a week to avoid a charge-up through FIB-SEM. Field emission SEM images of the graft-copolymer were taken after etching its surface with the Ga ion at each interval and they were reconstructed to obtain the three-dimensional image of the nano-matrix structure. The NR particles of about 0.5 μm in diameter were found to be dispersed into the nano-matrix of PS, which connected to each other on all directions. The dimensional feature of the NR particles was dependent upon an expression of orthogonal views of the 3D image.
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