Natural rubber to replace acrylonitrile butadiene styrene in polycarbonate blends and composites

Main Article Content

Patiparn Boonruam
Settakorn Upasen
Soipatta Soisuwan
Christian Antonio
Piyachat Wattanachai


In the challenging prospect of developing “green” materials, the present research studied the possibility to replace acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) which is a petroleum based, synthetic rubber in polycarbonate (PC) blends with natural rubber (NR) for thermoplastic elastomers (TPEs) applications. An acrylic based impact modifier and talc were included in order to investigate the correlation between phase morphology and mechanical and thermal properties of the blends and composites. A simple technique of two roll mills were performed to obtain the blend and composite pellets which later on were processed into test specimens using an injection molding technique. As NR is outstanding in terms of toughness, when blending with PC a significant improvement of Izod impact strength was advantageous even with a low amount of NR at 5% w/w. In opposite, the drawback of NR incorporated PC was   a drastic reduction in ductility which was shown by 75% decrease in the percent elongation to break. As the NR contents increased, the phase heterogeneity was more pronounced and resulted in lowering most properties.  However, a better homogeneity of the blend using an impact modifier did not show any property enhancement besides the impact strength.  Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) study suggested that talc was more miscible in NR than in PC and hence tended to improve properties when added into a blend with   a high NR content. With an inadequate NR amount, talc dispersed in the polymer matrix and only elastic modulus and Vicat softening point were enhanced due to the stiffness and heat resistant properties of talc. Mechanical and thermal properties, in general, of the PC/NR/talc and PC/ABS/talc were comparable, suggesting the possibility to replace ABS with NR. In addition, the reproducibility of the tests was observed, implying the efficiency of the two roll mills technique for blend and composite preparation.


Download data is not yet available.

Article Details

How to Cite
Boonruam, P., Upasen, S., Soisuwan, S., Antonio, C., & Wattanachai, P. (2021). Natural rubber to replace acrylonitrile butadiene styrene in polycarbonate blends and composites. Engineering and Applied Science Research, 48(3), 287–294. Retrieved from


Suarez H, Barlow JW, Paul DR. Mechanical properties of ABS/polycarbonate blends. J Appl Polymer Sci. 1984;29(11):3253-9.

Wu JS, Shen SC, Chang FC. Effect of rubber content in acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene and additional rubber on the polymer blends of polycarbonate and acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene. Polymer J. 1994;26(1):33-42.

Deanin RD, Chu CW. Polyblends of polycarbonate with ABS. J Elastomers Plast. 1986;18(1):42-9.

Hassan A, Jwu WY. Mechanical properties of high impact Abs/Pc blends - effect of blend ratio. Simposium Polimer Kebangsaan Ke-V; 2005 Aug 23-24; Hotel Resident, Uniten. Materials Science; 2005. p 65-76.

Krache R, Debah I. Some mechanical and thermal properties of PC/ABS blends. Mater Sci Appl. 2011;2(5):404-10.

Liang R, Gupta R. Processing and characterization of recycled PC/ABS blends with high recycle content. ANTEC. 2002;3:2948-52.

Raj MM. Studies on mechanical properties of PC-ABS blends. J Appl Sci Eng Res. 2014;3(2):512-8.

Aid S, Eddhahak A, Ortega Z, Froelich D, Tcharkhtchi A. Experimental study of the miscibility of ABS/PC polymer blends and investigation of the processing effect. J Appl Polymer Sci. 2017;134(25).

Sung YT, Fasulo PD, Rodgers WR, Yoo YT, Yoo Y, Paul DR. Properties of polycarbonate/acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene/talc composites. J Appl Polymer Sci. 2012;124(2):1020-30.

Balakrishnan S, Neelakantan NR, Saheb DN, Jog, JP. Rheological and morphological behaviour of blends of polycarbonate with unmodified and maleic anhydride grafted ABS. Polymer. 1998;39(23):5765-71.

Wildes G, Keskkula H, Paul DR. Fracture characterization of PC/ABS blends: effect of reactive compatibilization, ABS type and rubber concentration. Polymer. 1999;40(25):7089-107.

Tjong SC, Meng YZ. Effect of reactive compatibilizers on the mechanical properties of polycarbonate/poly (acrylonitrile-butadi styrene) blends. Eur Polymer J. 2000;36(1):123-9.

Wildes GS, Harada T, Keskkula H, Paul DR, Janarthanan V, Padwa AR. Synthesis and characterization of an amine-functional SAN for the compatibilization of PC/ABS blends. Polymer. 1999;40(11):3069-82.

Merijs R, Zicans J, Ivanova T, Berzina R, Saldabola R, Maksimovs R. The effect of introduction of montmorillonite clay (MMT) on the elastic properties of polycarbonate (PC) composition with acrylonitrile-butadiene styrene (ABS). Compos Struct. 2015;134:950-6.

Nakason C, Wannavilai P, Kaesaman A. Effect of vulcanization system on properties of thermoplastic vulcanizates based on epoxidized natural rubber/polypropylene blends. Polymer Test. 2006;25(1):34-41.

Punnarak P, Tantayanon S, Tangpasuthadol V. Dynamic vulcanization of reclaimed tire rubber and high density polyethylene blends. Polymer Degrad Stabil. 2006;91:3456-62.

Yuan D, Chen K, Xu C, Chen Z, Chen Y. Crosslinked bicontinuous biobased PLA/NR blends via dynamic vulcanization using different curing systems. Carbohydr Polymer. 2014;113:438-45.

Ismail H, Suryadiansyah. Thermoplastic elastomers based on polypropylene/natural rubber and polypropylene /recycle rubber blends. Polymer Test. 2002;21(4):389-95.

Mahapram S, Poompradub S. Preparation of natural rubber (NR) latex/low density polyethylene (LDPE) blown film and its properties. Polymer Test. 2011;30(7):716-25.

Sae-Oui P, Sirisinha C, Sa-nguanthammarong P, Thaptong P. Properties and recyclability of thermoplastic elastomer prepared from natural rubber powder (NRP) and high density polyethylene (HDPE). Polymer Test. 2010;29(3):346-51.

Mohamad N, Zainol NS, Rahim FF, Maulod HEA, Rahim TA, Shamsuri SR, et al. Mechanical and morphological properties of polypropylene/epoxidized natural rubber blends at various mixing ratio. Procedia Eng. 2013;68:439-45.

Mondal M, Gohs U, Wagenknecht U, Heinrich G. Polypropylene/natural rubber thermoplastic vulcanizates by eco-friendly and sustainable electron induced reactive processing. Radiat Phys Chem. 2013;88:74-81.

Taksapattanakul K, Tulyapitak T, Phinyocheep P, Ruamcharoen P, Ruamcharoen J, Lagarde F, et al. Raman investigation of thermoplastic vulcanizates based on hydrogenated natural rubber/polypropylene blends. Polymer Test. 2017;57:107-14.

Hashim F, Ismail H, Rusli, A. Comparison of properties of ethylene vinyl acetate/natural rubber/mengkuang leaf fibre (EVA/NR/MLF) and ethylene vinyl acetate/epoxidized natural rubber/mengkuang leaf fibre (EVA/ENR-50/MLF) thermoplastic elastomer composites. Polymer Test. 2017;61:1-7.

Mascia L, Su R, Clarke J, Lou Y, Mele E. Fibres from blends of epoxidized natural rubber and polylactic acid by the electrospinning process: Compatibilization and surface texture. Eur Polymer J. 2017;87:241-54.

Benmesli S, Riahi F. Dynamic mechanical and thermal properties of a chemically modified polypropylene/natural rubber thermoplastic elastomer blend. Polymer Test. 2014;36:54-61.

Liu X, Liu H, Wang D, Wang E, Liu W, Yao K, Chen N. Metallic glass-strengthened thermoplastic elastomer composites. Physica E Low Dimens Syst Nanostruct. 2017;90:37-41.

Smitthipong W, Suethao S, Shah D, Vollrath F. Interesting green elastomeric composites: Silk textile reinforced natural rubber. Polymer Test. 2016;55:17-24.

Cosnita M, Cazan C, Duta A. The influence of inorganic additive on the water stability and mechanical properties of recycled rubber, polyethylene terephthalate, high density polyethylene and wood composites. J Clean Prod. 2017;165:630-6.

Ismail H, Nizam JM, Abdul KHPS. The effect of a compatibilizer on the mechanical properties and mass swell of white rice husk ash filled natural rubber/linear low density polyethylene blends. Polymer Test. 2011;20(2):125-33.

Tangudom P, Thongsang S, Sombatsompop N. Cure and mechanical properties and abrasive wear behavior of natural rubber, styrene-butadiene rubber and their blends reinforced with silica hybrid fillers. Mater Des. 2014;53(Supplement C):856-64.

Inberg JPF, Gaymans RJ. Co-continuous polycarbonate /ABS blends. Polymer. 2002;43(8):2425-34.

Desa MSZM, Hassan A, Arsad A. The effect of natural rubber toughening on mechanical properties of poly(lactic acid)/ multiwalled carbon nanotube nanocomposite. Adv Mater Res. 2013;747:639-42.

Norzalia S, Surani B, Ahmad FMY. Properties of rubber-modified polypropylene impact blends. J Elastom Plast. 1994;26(2):183-204.

Wu JS, Shen SC, Chang FC. Effect of polycarbonate molecular weight on polymer blends of polycarbonate and ABS. J Appl Polymer Sci. 1993;50(8):1379-89.

Fang QZ, Wang TJ, Li HM. Large tensile deformation behavior of PC/ABS alloy. Polymer. 2006;47(14):5174-81.