The use of thermoplastic/liquid-crystalline polymer (LCP) blends is recognized as a good strategy for reducing viscosity and improving mechanical properties relative to pure thermoplastics. This improvement, however, is only noticeable if the LCP fibrillates, in situ, during processing and the fibrils are kept in the solid state. In this article, we report a morphological, rheological, and rheooptics study performed with two blends of poly(ethylene terephthalate) with a LCP, Rodrun LC3000 (10 and 25 wt% LCP content), and we show that the obtained dropletshape relaxation time (the time the deformed droplet took to regain its spherical form after the cessation of flow) allowed for the explanation of the morphological observations. In fact, the droplet-shape relaxation time was higher for the blend with higher LCP content, for the higher experimentally accessible shear rates, and still increased at the highest shear rate, which explained the fibrils of the LCP dispersed phase observed in this blend, whereas for the lower LCP content blend, the droplet-shape relaxation time reached a low-value plateau for higher shear rates, which explained the absence of fibrillation in this blend.
- Liquid-crystalline polymers (LCP)