Montmorillonite was found to be useful matrix for the direct preparation of graphene sheets from conducting polyaniline in the interlayer space of montmorillonite. Oxidative polymerization of the solution of anilinium sulfate by ammonium peroxydisulfate in the presence of montmorillonite particles led to the formation of polyaniline chains both on the surface (revealed by SEM analysis) and in the interlayer space of montmorillonite (proved by a combination of X-ray diffraction analysis and molecular modeling). SEM analysis also showed that superfluous polyaniline created an independent cluster between montmorillonite particles. Such prepared powder material was pressed into tablets using pressure 400 MPa and these tablets were calcined in dynamic argon atmosphere at temperature 1400°C for 1 hour. X-ray diffraction analysis revealed that calcination induced phase transformation of montmorillonite into cristobalite and mullite preserving the layered structure and thus creating good conditions for formation of graphene from polyaniline chains between the silicate layers.Keywords: montmorillonite, polyaniline, nanocomposite, calcination, graphene
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