Project TitleSupported Catalysis For In Situ Synthesis Of High Energy Density Nanocomposites
Track Code2006-136
Short Description

A process to produce homogeneously dispersed ceramic nanoparticles within the matrix of processable, high-strength polymers for use in high energy storage in capacitor and insulator applications.

#materials #composite #nanotechnology #fabrication


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.

TagsMATERIALS: composite, NANOTECHNOLOGY: fabrication
Posted DateJul 3, 2011 11:33 AM


Sara DiBenedetto
Neng Guo
Mike Lanagan

Tobin Marks*


High energy storage in capacitor and insulator applications


  • Combination of inorganic and polymeric materials
  • Energy densities exceed current ceramic or polymer-based insulators
  • Significant potential for future high-energy capacitor applications
  • Excellent permittivities
  • High breakdown strength insulator properties
  • Readily processable matrix for high energy dielectric applications
  • Scaleable and cost effective manufacturing

IP Status

Issued US Patent No. 8,163,347 and 8,729,182

Contact Information

Zach Brown, PhD

Invention Associate
(p) (847) 491-4629