Get the full paper here: ACS Appl. Mat. Inter. 7, 15681 (2015)
We demonstrate electrically and ionically conducting nacre-mimetic nanocomposites prepared using self-assembly of synthetic nanoclay in combination with PEDOT:PSS and a poly(ionic liquid) polymer from aqueous dispersions. The resulting nacre-mimetics show high degrees of mesoscale order and combine high stiffness and high strength. In terms of conductivities, the resulting hybrids exceed simple additive behavior and display synergetic conductivities due to high levels of interfaces and anisotropic conductivity pathways. The approach highlights the integration of relevant functionalities into stiff and strong bioinspired materials, and shows that synergetic properties beyond mechanical performance can be realized in advanced multifunctional nanocomposites using nacre-inspired design principles.