Carbon composite materials have attracted wide industrial interest due to high strength, light weight, chemical resistance, long durability, and so forth. In recent decades, a lot of efforts have been made to study graphene-based composites in both academy and industry. However, the reinforcing efficiency of graphene largely depends on the effective dispersion and distribution of individual graphene sheets.
Herein, we report the synergistic enhancement in mechanical and electrical properties of graphene-based ternary composite materials in the form of films and fibers. We found that the remarkable synergistic toughening of polyimide (PI) nanocomposite films by hydrogen-bond assisted 3D network of both pyridine-functionalized reduced graphene oxide (Py-RGO) and carbon nanotubes (Py-MWCNTs). As fiber form, newly designed PI/RGO/CNT composite fibers in combination of polymer infiltration followed by photonic flash irradiation were developed. The mechanical strength, modulus, and electrical conductivity can be enhanced simultaneously by molecular-level coupling of PI/graphene with CNT fibers via photonic flash sintering. These high-performance multifunctional composites have potential applications as structural composites, multifunctional fibers, catalyst supports, energy storage materials, artificial tissue, and so on