Thermomechanical, mechanical and fracture mechanical properties of modified epoxy resins with two different modifiers are investigated. Carboxyl-terminated butadiene-acrylonitrile (CTBN) is used as toughening agent and hexanediole diglycidyl ether (HDDGE) as reactive diluent. Both modifiers are admixed in contents from 0 up to 100 phr (parts per hundred resin) and exhibit flexibilizing and toughening qualities. The glass transition temperature is strongly depressed by the admixed reactive diluent, whereas the tensile modulus exhibits greater dependency on the toughening agent contents. The tensile strength and strain at break values are higher for the formulations with diluent compared to resins with toughening agent. Up to a content of 45 phr both modified systems exhibit comparable fracture toughness values. Only the toughened systems comprise increasing values for modifier amounts higher than 45 phr. For the formulation with both modifiers (toughening agent and diluent) a significantly higher toughness but a reduced glass transition temperature was obtained.

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© 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 2017134, 45348.