Characterization of Nanocomposites Structure

Kristiina Oksman, Lulea University of Technology
Robert J. Moon, US Forest Service - Forest Products Laboratory, Purdue University, Birck Nanotechnology Center

Date of this Version



This chapter summarizes several techniques that have been used in the characterization of cellulose nanocomposites, in particular cellulose nanomaterials (CNs) dispersion, distribution, and orientation within polymer matrixes. The microscopy techniques described are optical microscopy, scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, and atomic force microscopy. Also, the use of X-ray diffraction for quantification of CN orientation is discussed. The characterization of bionanocomposites is challenging because these materials are soft, moisture sensitive, non-conductive, and usually both the matrix phase and the reinforcement phase primarily consist of low atomic number elements (making differentiation difficult). Different sample preparation techniques for CN composite materials are also discussed.


Nanoscience and Nanotechnology