A high-performance polyamide grade of easy processability which presents excellent thermal and mechanical properties such as resistance to fatigue and creep is studied in this work. An accelerated aging of Polyamide 12 samples was performed in stainless steel autoclaves at 120°C in deoxygenated water at pH 8.7 in order to shorten the aging time and avoid oxidation. The samples were retrieved at distinct aging times which were enough to reach the asymptotic portion of the curve of corrected inherent viscosity (CIV) versus aging time. CIV measurements track modifications of the molecular weight due to hydrolysis. Afterwards, the samples were analyzed through their cross section in the core and edge layer in order to investigate changes due to diffusion effects. Differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) analysis assesses the degree of crystallinity and melting temperature. Thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) was employed in order to investigate changes in the thermal stability and the stage of degradation of the samples. Unlike conventional volumetric analysis techniques, the instrumented indentation tests (IIT) in micro-scale were performed to measure the mechanical properties such as elastic modulus (EIT) and hardness (HIT) along the thickness aiming to detect properties gradient between surface and core. The CIV measurements showed a decrease of 46.3% in the aged sample during the maximum aging time compared to the reference material.

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