Low percolation 3D Cu and Ag shell network composites for EMI shielding and thermal conduction

Seung Hwan Lee, Seunggun Yu, Faisal Shahzad, Junpyo Hong, Seok Jin Noh, Woo Nyon Kim, Soon Man Hong, Chong Min Koo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

52 Citations (Scopus)


Metal-coated polymer bead based composites are promising as electromagnetic interference (EMI) shielding and thermally conductive materials because they form a percolation 3D metal shell network at very low filler content. Herein, we fabricated 3D Cu/Ag shell network composites through electroless plating of metal on polymer beads and a simple hot pressing technique. Cu and Ag shells provide a continuous network for electron and heat conduction; thus, yielding excellent EMI shielding effectiveness of 110 dB at a 0.5 mm thickness and a thermal conductivity of 16.1 W m−1K−1 at only 13 vol % of metal filler. The properties of composites depend on the size of polystyrene (PS) beads and large size metal-coated PS bead composites exhibit higher electrical conductivity, EMI shielding effectiveness, and thermal conductivity than small size bead composites. These results are ascribed to the reduction in the number of contact interfaces between metal-coated beads, which minimizes the interfacial resistance. This study is set to pave the way for designing advanced EMI shielding and thermal conductive materials by a scalable and efficient synthesis approach.

Original languageEnglish
Article number107778
JournalComposites Science and Technology
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Sept 29


  • 3D metal shell network
  • EMI shielding
  • Low percolation
  • Thermal conductivity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Engineering(all)


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