Functionalization of polymer surfaces by medium frequency non-thermal plasma

T. Felix, J. S. Trigueiro, N. Bundaleski, O. M. N. D. Teodoro, S. Sério, N. A. Debacher

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


This work addresses the surface modification of different polymers by argon dielectric barrier discharge, using bromoform vapours. Atomic Force Microscopy and Scanning Electron Microscopy showed that plasma etching occurs in stages and may be related to the reach of the species generated and obviously the gap between the electrodes. In addition, the stages of flatten surface or homogeneity may be the result of the transient crosslinking promoted by the intense UV radiation generated by the non- thermal plasma. X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy analysis showed that bromine was inserted on the polymer surface as C–Br bonds and as adsorbed HBr. The obtained results demonstrate that the highest degree of bromofunctionalization was achieved on polypropylene surface, which contains about 8,5% of Br. After its derivatization in ammonia, Br disappeared and about 6% of nitrogen in the form of amine group was incorporated at the surface. This result can be considered as a clear fingerprint of the Br substitution by the amine group, thus illustrating the efficiency of the proposed method for functionalization of polymer surfaces.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)730-738
Number of pages9
JournalApplied Surface Science
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jan 2018


  • Non-thermal plasma
  • Polymer activation
  • Surface modification


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