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Title: Effects of Rigid Amorphous Fraction and Lamellar Crystal Orientation on Electrical Insulation of Poly(ethylene terephthalate) Films
In response to the stringent requirements for future DC-link capacitors in electric vehicles (EVs), it is desirable to develop dielectric polymer films with high-temperature tolerance (at least 105 °C) and low loss (dissipation factor, tan δ < 0.003). Although the biaxially oriented poly(ethylene terephthalate) (BOPET) film has an alleged temperature rating of 120 °C, its dielectric performance in terms of breakdown strength and lifetime cannot satisfy the stringent requirements for power electronics in EVs. In this work, we carried out a structure–electrical insulation property relationship study to understand the working mechanism for various PET films, including a commercial BOPET film, an amorphous PET (AmPET) film, and two annealed PET films (AnPET, i.e., cold-crystallized from AmPET). Structural analyses revealed a uniform edge-on crystalline orientation in BOPET with the a* axis in the film normal direction. Meanwhile, a high content of the rigid amorphous fraction (RAF) was identified for BOPET, which resulted from biaxial stretching during processing. On the contrary, AnPET films had a random crystal orientation with lower RAF contents. From dielectric breakdown and lifetime studies, the high-crystallinity AnPET film exhibited better electrical insulation than BOPET, and AmPET had the worst electrical insulation. Electrical conductivity results revealed that the high RAF content more » in BOPET led to reasonably high breakdown strength and long lifetime only at low temperatures (<100 °C). Meanwhile, PET crystals were more insulating than the amorphous phase, whether mobile, rigid, or glassy. In particular, the flat-on lamellae in the AnPET film were more effective than the edge-on lamellae in BOPET in blocking the conduction of charge carriers (electrons and impurity ions). This understanding will help us design high-temperature semicrystalline polymer films for DC-link capacitors in EVs. « less
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Award ID(s):
1708990 1708999
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National Science Foundation
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