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Title:
COMPOSITION, POLYMER COMPOSITE ARTICLE FORMED THEREWITH, AND METHOD OF PREPARING SAME
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2019/152830
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
A composition and a method for preparing a polymer composite article. The composition comprises (A) a filler in an amount of from 10 to 90 wt.%. The composition also comprises (B) a polymer in an amount of from 10 to 90 wt.%, wherein the (B) polymer comprises a polyvinyl. Further, the composition comprises (C) an organopolysiloxane in an amount of from greater than 0 to 10 wt.%; the (C) organopolysiloxane having at least one silicon-bonded hydroxyl group and a viscosity of from 1,000 to 60,000 mPa•s at 25 °C. The ranges for components (A)-(C) are based on the total weight of components (A), (B) and (C) in the composition.

Inventors:
BRUCE, Keith (2200 W. Salzburg RoadP.O. Box 99, Midland Michigan, 48686-0994, US)
CHORVATH, Igor (2200 W. Salzburg RoadP.O. Box 99, Midland Michigan, 48686-0994, US)
COURTEMANCHE, Marc-Andre (2200 W. Salzburg RoadP.O. Box 99, Midland Michigan, 48686-0994, US)
DEGROOT JR., Jon V. (2200 W. Salzburg RoadP.O. Box 99, Midland Michigan, 48686-0994, US)
GAAL, Sean (2200 W. Salzburg RoadP.O. Box 99, Midland Michigan, 48686-0994, US)
GROSS, Craig (2200 W. Salzburg RoadP.O. Box 99, Midland Michigan, 48686-0994, US)
GUO, Hailan (100 Independence Mall WestPhiladelphia, Pennsylvania, 19106-2399, US)
KEENIHAN, James (2200 W. Salzburg RoadP.O. Box 99, Midland Michigan, 48686-0994, US)
MEALEY, Shawn (2200 W. Salzburg RoadP.O. Box 99, Midland Michigan, 48686-0994, US)
MILLER, Scott (2200 W. Salzburg RoadP.O. Box 99, Midland Michigan, 48686-0994, US)
PARSONS, Tom (230 Abner Jackson ParkwayLake Jackson, Texas, 77566, US)
RAPACKI, Steven R. (100 Independence Mall WestPhiladelphia, Pennsylvania, 19106-2399, US)
SCHLADER, Andrew (230 Abner Jackson ParkwayLake Jackson, Texas, 77566, US)
SERRAT, Christina (230 Abner Jackson ParkwayLake Jackson, Texas, 77566, US)
TONGE, Lauren (2200 W. Salzburg RoadP.O. Box 99, Midland Michigan, 48686-0994, US)
Application Number:
US2019/016330
Publication Date:
August 08, 2019
Filing Date:
February 01, 2019
Export Citation:
Click for automatic bibliography generation   Help
Assignee:
DOW SILICONES CORPORATION (2200 West Salzburg Road, Auburn, Michigan, 48611, US)
DOW GLOBAL TECHNOLOGIES LLC (2040 Dow Center, Midland, Michigan, 48674, US)
ROHM AND HAAS COMPANY (100 Independence Mall West, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 19106-2399, US)
International Classes:
C08L27/06; C08L83/04
Domestic Patent References:
WO2015157914A12015-10-22
WO2003104323A12003-12-18
WO2011041396A12011-04-07
WO2007071732A12007-06-28
WO2015076970A12015-05-28
Foreign References:
EP0994151A12000-04-19
US9593209B22017-03-14
US7897689B22011-03-01
US4351931A1982-09-28
US5346963A1994-09-13
US6545091B12003-04-08
US5053457A1991-10-01
US4861677A1989-08-29
US4861676A1989-08-29
US4670349A1987-06-02
US4358557A1982-11-09
US3932332A1976-01-13
US4576995A1986-03-18
JPS5955743A1984-03-30
JPS5457582A1979-05-09
JPS58203043A1983-11-26
US8722773B22014-05-13
US4599392A1986-07-08
US5272236A1993-12-21
US5278272A1994-01-11
US5582923A1996-12-10
US5733155A1998-03-31
US3645992A1972-02-29
US4076698A1978-02-28
US3914342A1975-10-21
US5854045A1998-12-29
JPS58203043A1983-11-26
Other References:
"Polymer Handbook", 1999, WILEY, pages: 1 - 76
REV. MACROMOL. CHEM. PHYS., vol. C29, no. 2,3, 1989, pages 285 - 297
"Handbook of thermoplastic elastomers", 1979, VAN NOSTRAND REINHOLD
"Additives for plastics handbook", 2001, ELSEVIER
ELMER D. LIPP, APPL. SPECTROSC., vol. 45, 1991, pages 477
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
PECK, Randall J. et al. (900 Fifth Third Center, 111 Lyon Street NWGrand Rapids, Michigan, 49503, US)
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS

What is claimed is:

1 . A composition for preparing a polymer composite article, said composition comprising:

(A) a filler in an amount of from 10 to 90 wt.%;

(B) a polymer in an amount of from 10 to 90 wt.%, wherein said (B) polymer comprises a polyvinyl; and

(C) an organopolysiloxane in an amount of from greater than 0 to 10 wt.%; the (C) organopolysiloxane having at least one silicon-bonded hydroxyl group and a viscosity of from 1 ,000 to 60,000 mPa-s at 25 °C;

each based on the total weight of components (A), (B) and (C) in said composition.

2. The composition of claim 1 , wherein: (i) said (C) organopolysiloxane is present as a liquid at 25 ‘O; (ii) said organopolysiloxane is present in said composition in a solid carrier component comprising said organopolysiloxane; (iii) said (C) organopolysiloxane has a viscosity of from 2,000 to 50,000 mPa-s at 25 °C; (iv) said (A) filler is selected from a lignocellulosic filler, a mineral filler, a glass filler, a carbon filler, a pigment, and combinations thereof; or (v) any combination of (i) to (iv).

3. The composition of claim 1 or 2, wherein said (C) organopolysiloxane has the following average unit formula:

[Rl 3-n(0H)nSi01/2]a’[Rl 2-m(°H)mSi02/2]b’[Rl si03/2]c’[Si04/2]d’; wherein each R1 is an independently selected hydrocarbyl group; n is 0, 1 , 2, or 3, m is 0, 1 or 2, with the proviso that n and m are not simultaneously 0; 0 < a’ < 1 ; 0 < b’ < 1 ; 0 < c’ < 0.1 ; and 0 < d’ < 0.1 , with the proviso that a’+b’+c’+d’=1 .

4. The composition of claim 1 or 2, wherein said (C) organopolysiloxane has the following average unit formula (I) or (II):

[Rl 3-n(0H)nSi01 /2]a”[R1 2-m(0H)mSi02/2]b”(l) wherein each R1 is an independently selected hydrocarbyl group; n is 0, 1 , 2, or 3, m is 0, 1 or 2, with the proviso that n and m are not simultaneously 0; 0 < a” < 1 ; 0 < b” < 1 ; with the proviso that a”+b”=1 ; or

R1 3-x(OH)xSiO[SiRl 20]c”Si(0H)yRl 3-y (, ,} wherein each R1 is an independently selected hydrocarbyl group; x is 0, 1 , 2, or 3, y is 0, 1 , 2, or 3, with the proviso that x and y are not simultaneously 0; and c” is from 60 to 1 ,200.

5. The composition of any one preceding claim, wherein: (i) said (A) filler comprises a lignocellulosic filler and is present in an amount of from 40 to 80 wt.%; (ii) said (B) polymer comprises polyvinyl chloride and is present in an amount of from 20 to 60 wt.%; and (iii) said (C) organopolysiloxane is present in an amount of from 0.8 to 4.0 wt.%.

6. The composition of any one of claims 1 -4, wherein: (i) said (A) filler comprises a mineral filler and is present in an amount of from 10 to 50 wt.%; (ii) said (B) polymer is present in an amount of from 50 to 90 wt.%; (iii) said (C) organopolysiloxane is present in an amount of from 0.1 to 10 wt.%; and (iv) said (C) organopolysiloxane has a viscosity of from 1 ,000 to 50,000 mPa-s at 25 °C.

7. The composition of any one preceding claim, further comprising one or more additives selected from (D) a compatibilizer, (E) a colorant, (F) a blowing agent, (G) a UV stabilizer, (H) an antioxidant, (I) a process aid, (J) a preservative, (K) a biocide, (L) a flame retardant, (M) an impact modifier; (N) a heat stabilizer, and (O) a lubricant.

8. A method of preparing the composition of any one of claims 1 -7, said method comprising: combining (A) said filler, (B) said polymer, and (C) said organopolysiloxane, thereby preparing the composition.

9. A method of preparing a polymer composite article, said method comprising:

preparing the polymer composite article from the composition of any one of claims 1 - 7.

10. The method of claim 9, wherein the method further comprises (i) forming the composition; (ii) heating the (B) polymer to melt the (B) polymer prior to and/or during forming the composition; (iii) mixing a mixture of the (A) filler and (C) organopolysiloxane prior adding the (B) polymer or (iv) any combination of (i), (ii) or (iii).

1 1 . The method of claim 9, wherein the method comprises:

combining the (A) filler, the (B) polymer, and the (C) organopolysiloxane at an elevated temperature under mixing to give a flowable mixture; and

forming the polymer composite article from the flowable mixture.

12. The method of claim 1 1 , wherein: (i) the (C) organopolysiloxane is a liquid when combining the flowable mixture with the (C) organopolysiloxane; or (ii) the (C) organopolysiloxane is present within a solid carrier component and the method further comprises melting the solid carrier component when combining the flowable mixture and the (C) organopolysiloxane.

13. The method of claim any one of claims 9-12, wherein: (i) preparing the polymer composite article from the composition further comprises forming the composition into a desired shape; (ii) preparing the polymer composite article from the composition comprises extruding the composition; (iii) preparing the polymer composite article from the composition comprises molding the composition; or (iv) any combinations of (i) to (iii).

14. The method of any one of claims 9-13 carried out in an extruder, wherein: (i) an extrusion processing temperature of the composition in the extruder is reduced as compared to an extrusion processing temperature of a mixture of the (A) filler and the (B) polymer without the (C) organopolysiloxane; and/or (ii) a torque of the extruder is reduced when mixing the composition as compared to a torque of the extruder when extruding a mixture of the (A) filler and the (B) polymer without the (C) organopolysiloxane.

15. A polymer composite article prepared by the method of any one of claims 9-14.

16. A solid carrier component, comprising:

1 to 70 wt.% of (C) an organopolysiloxane having at least one silicon-bonded hydroxyl group and a viscosity of from 1 ,000 to 60,000 mPa-s at 25 °C;

0 to 90 wt.% of (B) a polymer comprising a polyvinyl;

0 to 95 wt.% of (D) a compatibilizer comprising a functionalized polymer; and 0 to 75 wt.% of (A) a filler selected from a lignocellulosic filler, a mineral filler, a glass filler, a carbon filler, a pigment, and combinations thereof;

with the proviso that at least one of components (B) and (D) is present in said solid carrier component.

17. The solid carrier component of claim 16, wherein:

(i) said (C) organopolysiloxane has a viscosity of from 1 ,000 to 50,000 mPa-s at 25‘O;

(ii) said (C) organopolysiloxane has the following average unit formula (I) or (II):

[R^ 3-n(OH)nSi01 /2]a”[R1 2-m(CH)mSi02/2]b” (I) wherein each R1 is an independently selected hydrocarbyl group; n is 0, 1 , 2, or 3, m is 0, 1 or 2, with the proviso that n and m are not simultaneously 0; 0 < a” < 1 ; 0 < b” < 1 ; with the proviso that a”+b”=1 ; or

R1 3-x(OH)xSiO[SiRl 20]c”Si(0H)yRl 3-y (,

wherein each R1 is an independently selected hydrocarbyl group; x is 0, 1 , 2, or 3, y is 0, 1 , 2, or 3, with the proviso that x and y are not simultaneously 0; and c” is from 60 to 1 ,200; or (iii) both (i) and (ii).

18. The solid carrier component of claim 16 or 17, wherein the (D) a compatibilizer comprising the functionalized polymer is present, and wherein the functionalized polymer comprises a maleated polymer.

Description:
COMPOSITION, POLYMER COMPOSITE ARTICLE FORMED

THEREWITH, AND METHOD OF PREPARING SAME

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

[0001] This application claims priority to and all advantages of U.S. Provisional Application No. 62/624,968, filed on 1 February 2018, the content of which is incorporated herein by reference.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

[0002] The present invention generally relates to a composition and, more specifically, to a composition for preparing a polymer composite article, to methods of preparing the composition and the polymer composite article therewith, and to the polymer composite article formed thereby.

DESCRIPTION OF THE RELATED ART

[0003] Polymer composite articles are known in the art and are utilized in various end use applications. Polymer composite articles are increasingly popular with consumers due to cost and desirable properties associated with polymer composite articles, including physical and mechanical properties.

[0004] Certain polymer composite articles contain a high percentage by weight of fillers. Such polymer composite articles are typically produced by thoroughly mixing fillers and polymer to give a mixture. The mixture can be molded (e.g., injection molded) or extruded to form the polymer composite articles. Depending on a selection of the polymer utilized to form the polymer composite article, the polymer composite article may be cured and/or vulcanized. However, conventional processes for producing polymer composite articles generally require a process aid (which can be internal or external) to facilitate forming the polymer composite articles from the mixture to ensure quality (e.g. smoothness of surface and edges). Conventional, low cost, organic process aids generally suffer from the drawback of requiring high loading to achieve faster production speeds, thereby impacting cost and/or performance properties. In addition, many conventional process aids may negatively affect physical properties and reduce mechanical properties (impact resistance, flexural strength, flexural modulus) of the composite articles, especially at elevated use temperatures. Conventional process aids may also migrate from the polymer composite articles, thus negatively impacting one or more properties of the polymer composite articles over time, such as physical properties, appearance, feel, ability to overmold, ability to co-extrude, ability to adhere to the surface, ability to print the surface and ability to paint the surface of the polymer composite articles. In addition some of the organic process aids volatilize at higher application temperatures, which can lead to formation or bubbles and cracks in the polymer composite articles, which can compromise long term performance of these articles.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0005] The present invention provides a composition for preparing a polymer composite article. The composition comprises (A) a filler in an amount of from 10 to 90 wt.%. The composition also comprises (B) a polymer in an amount of from 10 to 90 wt.%, wherein the (B) polymer comprises a polyvinyl. Further, the composition comprises (C) an organopolysiloxane in an amount of from greater than 0 to 10 wt.%; the (C) organopolysiloxane having at least one silicon-bonded hydroxyl group and a viscosity of from 1 ,000 to 60,000 mPa-s at 25 °C. The ranges for components (A)-(C) are based on the total weight of components (A), (B) and (C) in the composition.

[0006] A method of preparing the composition is also provided. The method of preparing the composition comprises combining the (A) filler, the (B) polymer, and the (C) organopolysiloxane, thereby preparing the composition.

[0007] Further, a method for preparing a polymer composite article is provided by the present invention. The method comprises preparing the polymer composite article from the composition. In addition, a polymer composite article formed in accordance with the method is also provided.

[0008] Further, a solid carrier component comprising the (C) organopolysiloxane and at least one other component is also provided.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

[0009] The present invention provides a composition for preparing a polymer composite article. The polymer composite article has excellent physical properties and is suitable for myriad end use applications, as described below. A method of preparing a polymer composite article and the polymer composite article formed thereby are also provided and described below.

[0010] The composition for preparing a polymer composite article comprises: (A) a filler in an amount of from 10 to 90 wt.%; (B) a polymer in an amount of from 10 to 90 wt.%; and (C) an organopolysiloxane in an amount of from greater than 0 to 10 wt.%; each based on the total weight of components (A), (B) and (C) in the composition.

[0011] Component (A) Filler

[0012] The composition comprises (A) a filler. The (A) filler may form a discontinuous phase in the composition for preparing the polymer composite article and the composite article so prepared. The (A) filler is not limited and may be, for example, a reinforcing filler, an extending filler, a thermally conductive filler, an electrically conductive filler, a flame retarding filler, an acid accepting filler, a Theologically modifying filler, a lignocellulosic filler, a coloring filler, a mineral filler, a glass filler, a carbon filler, or a combination thereof. The selection of the (A) filler is typically a function of the polymer composite article to be formed with the composition and the end use applications of the polymer composite article.

[0013] In certain embodiments, the (A) filler comprises at least one hydroxide or hydroxyl functional group, and/or water. Typically, the at least one hydroxide or hydroxyl functional group (or water) is chemically and/or physically bonded to a surface of the (A) filler. Without wishing to be bound by theory, it is believed that if the (A) filler has this property, then it is possible for an organopolysiloxane to react or physically interact with and surface treat the (A) filler.

[0014] The (A) filler may be untreated, pretreated, or added in conjunction with an optional filler treating agent, described below, which when so added may treat the (A) filler in situ or prior to incorporation of the (A) filler in the composition. The (A) filler may be a single filler or a combination of two or more fillers that differ in at least one property such as type of filler, method of preparation, treatment or surface chemistry, filler composition, filler shape, filler surface area, average particle size, and/or particle size distribution.

[0015] The shape and dimensions of the (A) filler is also not specifically restricted. For example, the (A) filler may be spherical, rectangular, ovoid, irregular, and may be in the form of, for example, a powder, a flour, a fiber, a flake, a chip, a shaving, a strand, a scrim, a wafer, a wool, a straw, a particle, and combinations thereof. Dimensions and shape are typically selected based on the type of the (A) filler utilized, the selection of other components included within the composition, and the end use application of the polymer composite article formed therewith.

[0016] Non-limiting examples of fillers that may function as reinforcing fillers include reinforcing silica fillers such as fume silica, silica aerogel, silica xerogel, and precipitated silica. Fumed silicas are known in the art and commercially available; e.g., fumed silica sold under the name CAB-O-SIL by Cabot Corporation of Massachusetts, U.S.A.

[0017] Non-limiting examples fillers that may function as extending or reinforcing fillers include quartz and/or crushed quartz, aluminum oxide, magnesium oxide, silica (e.g. fumed, ground, precipitated), hydrated magnesium silicate, magnesium carbonate, dolomite, silicone resin, wollastonite, soapstone, kaolinite, kaolin, mica muscovite, phlogopite, halloysite (hydrated alumina silicate), aluminum silicate, sodium aluminosilicate, glass (fiber, beads or particles, including recycled glass, e.g. from wind turbines or other sources), clay, magnetite, hematite, calcium carbonate such as precipitated, fumed, and/or ground calcium carbonate, calcium sulfate, barium sulfate, calcium metasilicate, zinc oxide, talc, diatomaceous earth, iron oxide, clays, mica, chalk, titanium dioxide (titania), zirconia, sand, carbon black, graphite, anthracite, coal, lignite, charcoal, activated carbon, non-functional silicone resin, alumina, silver, metal powders, , magnesium oxide, magnesium hydroxide, magnesium oxysulfate fiber, aluminum trihydrate, aluminum oxyhydrate, coated fillers, carbon fibers (including recycled carbon fibers, e.g. from the aircraft and/or automotive industries), poly-aramids such as chopped KEVLAR™ or Twaron™, nylon fibers, mineral fillers or pigments (e.g. titanium dioxide, non-hydrated, partially hydrated, or hydrated fluorides, chlorides, bromides, iodides, chromates, carbonates, hydroxides, phosphates, hydrogen phosphates, nitrates, oxides, and sulfates of sodium, potassium, magnesium, calcium, and barium); zinc oxide, antimony pentoxide, antimony trioxide, beryllium oxide, chromium oxide, lithopone, boric acid or a borate salt such as zinc borate, barium metaborate or aluminum borate, mixed metal oxides such as vermiculite, bentonite, pumice, perlite, fly ash, clay, and silica gel; rice hull ash, ceramic and, zeolites, metals such as aluminum flakes or powder, bronze powder, copper, gold, molybdenum, nickel, silver powder or flakes, stainless steel powder, tungsten, barium titanate, silica-carbon black composite, functionalized carbon nanotubes, cement, slate flour, pyrophyllite, sepiolite, zinc stannate, zinc sulphide), and combinations thereof. Alternatively the extending or reinforcing filler may be selected from the group consisting of calcium carbonate, talc and a combination thereof.

[0018] Extending fillers are known in the art and commercially available; such as a ground silica sold under the name MIN-U-SIL by U.S. Silica of Berkeley Springs, WV. Suitable precipitated calcium carbonates include Winnofil™ SPM from Solvay and Ultra-pflex™ and Ultra-pflex™ 100 from SMI.

[0019] When the (A) filler comprises a thermally conductive filler, the (A) filler may be both thermally conductive and electrically conductive. Alternatively, the (A) filler may be thermally conductive and electrically insulating. A thermally conductive filler may also have other beneficial properties, such as, but not limited to, a reinforcing filler, an extending filler, or another property as described above. The thermally conductive filler may be selected from, but not limited to, the group consisting of aluminum nitride, aluminum oxide, aluminum trihydrate, aluminum oxyhydrate, barium titanate, barium sulfate, beryllium oxide, carbon fibers, diamond, graphite, magnesium hydroxide, magnesium oxide, magnesium oxysulfate fiber, metal particulate, onyx, silicon carbide, tungsten carbide, zinc oxide, coated fillers, and a combination thereof.

[0020] When the (A) filler comprises the thermally conductive filler, the thermally conductive filler may comprise a metallic filler, an inorganic filler, a meltable filler, or a combination thereof. Metallic fillers include particles of metals, metal powders, and particles of metals having layers on the surfaces of the particles. These layers may be, for example, metal nitride layers or metal oxide layers. Suitable metallic fillers are exemplified by particles of metals selected from the group consisting of aluminum, copper, gold, nickel, silver, and combinations thereof, and alternatively aluminum. Suitable metallic fillers are further exemplified by particles of the metals listed above having layers on their surfaces selected from the group consisting of aluminum nitride, aluminum oxide, copper oxide, nickel oxide, silver oxide, and combinations thereof. For example, the metallic filler may comprise aluminum particles having aluminum oxide layers on their surfaces. Inorganic fillers are exemplified by onyx; aluminum trihydrate, aluminum oxyhydrate, metal oxides such as aluminum oxide, beryllium oxide, magnesium oxide, and zinc oxide; nitrides such as aluminum nitride; carbides such as silicon carbide and tungsten carbide; and combinations thereof. Alternatively, inorganic fillers are exemplified by aluminum oxide, zinc oxide, and combinations thereof. Meltable fillers may comprise Bi, Ga, In, Sn, or an alloy thereof. The meltable filler may optionally further comprise Ag, Au, Cd, Cu, Pb, Sb, Zn, or a combination thereof. Examples of suitable meltable fillers include Ga, In— Bi— Sn alloys, Sn— In— Zn alloys, Sn— In— Ag alloys, Sn— Ag— Bi alloys, Sn— Bi— Cu— Ag alloys, Sn— Ag— Cu— Sb alloys, Sn— Ag— Cu alloys, Sn— Ag alloys, Sn— Ag— Cu— Zn alloys, and combinations thereof. The meltable filler may have a melting point from 50 °C to 250 °C. The meltable filler may be a eutectic alloy, a non-eutectic alloy, or a pure metal. Many suitable meltable fillers are commercially available.

[0021] Alternatively, the (A) filler may comprise a non-reactive silicone resin. For example, the (A) filler may comprise a non-reactive MQ silicone resin. As known in the art, M siloxy units are represented by RO3S1O-1 /2, and Q siloxy units are represented by S1O4/2, where

R0 is an independently selected substituent. Such non-reactive silicone resins are typically soluble in liquid hydrocarbons such as benzene, toluene, xylene, heptane and the like or in liquid organosilicon compounds such as a low viscosity cyclic and linear polydiorganosiloxanes. The molar ratio of M to Q siloxy units in the non-reactive silicone resin may be from 0.5/1 to 1 .5/1 , alternatively from 0.6/1 to 0.9/1 . These mole ratios can be conveniently measured by Silicon 29 Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy ( 29 Si NMR) , which is described in U.S. Patent 9,593,209 Reference Example 2 in col. 32, which is incorporated by reference herein. The non-reactive silicone resin may further comprise 2.0 wt.% or less, alternatively 0.7 wt.% or less, alternatively 0.3 wt.% or less, of T units including a silicon-bonded hydroxyl or a hydrolyzable group, exemplified by alkoxy such as methoxy and ethoxy, and acetoxy, while still being within the scope of such non-reactive silicone resins. The concentration of hydrolyzable groups present in the non-reactive silicone resin can be determined using Fourier Transform-Infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy.

[0022] Alternatively or in addition, the (A) filler may comprise a non-reactive silicone resin other than the non-reactive MQ silicone resin described immediately above. For example, the (A) filler may comprise a T resin, a TD resin, a TDM resin, a TDMQ resin, or any other non-reactive silicone resin. Typically, such non-reactive silicone resins include at least 30 mole percent T siloxy and/or Q siloxy units. As known in the art, D siloxy units are represented by T siloxy units are represented by ROS1O3/2, where R^ is an independently selected substituent.

[0023] The weight average molecular weight, M w , of the non-reactive silicone resin will depend at least in part on the molecular weight of the silicone resin and the type(s) of substituents (e.g. hydrocarbyl groups) that are present in the non-reactive silicone resin. M w as used herein represents the weight average molecular weight measured using conventional gel permeation chromatography (GPC), with narrow molecular weight distribution polystyrene (PS) standard calibration, when the peak representing the neopentamer is excluded from the measurement. The PS equivalent M w of the non-reactive silicone resin may be from 12,000 to 30,000 g/mole, typically from 17,000 to 22,000 g/mole. The non-reactive silicone resin can be prepared by any suitable method. Silicone resins of this type have been prepared by cohydrolysis of the corresponding silanes or by silica hydrosol capping methods generally known in the art.

[0024] In certain embodiments, the (A) filler may comprise an acid acceptor. The acid acceptor may comprise a metal oxide such as magnesium oxide. Acid acceptors are generally known in the art and are commercially available under trade names including Rhenofit F, Star Mag CX-50, Star Mag CX-150, BLP-3, and MaxOx98LR. Rhenofit F was calcium oxide from Rhein Chemie Corporation of Chardon, Ohio, USA. Star Mag CX-50 was magnesium oxide from Merrand International Corp. of Portsmouth, N.H., USA. MagOX 98LR was magnesium oxide from Premier Chemicals LLC of W. Conshohocken, Pa., USA. BLP- 3 was calcium carbonate was Omya Americas of Cincinnati, Ohio, USA.

[0025] In these or other embodiments, the (A) filler may comprise a lignocellulosic-based filler. The lignocellulosic-based filler comprises, alternatively consists essentially of, alternatively consists of, a lignocellulosic material. Typically, the lignocellulosic-based filler consists of the lignocellulosic material. The lignocellulosic-based filler, as well as the lignocellulosic material, may comprise any matter derived from any plant source. When the lignocellulosic-based filler consists essentially of or consists of lignocellulosic material, the lignocellulosic material may also include some water or moisture content, although the lignocellulosic material, as well as the lignocellulosic-based filler, is typically dry, i.e., does not contain any free moisture content but for that which may be associated with the relative humidity in an environment in which the lignocellulosic-based filler is prepared, derived, formed, and/or stored. The same is typically true for other species of the (A) filler, but is noted in regards to lignocellulosic-based fillers as lignocellulosic materials generally include some water content as harvested/prepared prior to any drying or end use.

[0026] The lignocellulosic-based filler typically comprises carbohydrate polymers (e.g. cellulose and/or hemicellulose), and may further comprise an aromatic polymer (e.g. lignin). The lignocellulosic-based filler is typically a natural lignocellulosic material, i.e., is not synthetically derived. For example, the lignocellulosic-based filler is typically derived from wood (hardwood, softwood, and/or plywood). Alternatively or in addition, the lignocellulosic- based filler may comprise lignocellulosic material from other non-wood sources, such as lignocellulosic material from plants, or other plant-derived polymers, for example agricultural by-products, chaff, sisal, bagasse, wheat straw, kapok, ramie, henequen, corn fiber or coir, nut shells, flax, jute, hemp, kenaf, rice hulls, abaca, peanut hull, bamboo, straw, lignin, starch, or cellulose and cellulose-containing products, and combinations thereof.

[0027] Specific examples of suitable hardwoods from which the lignocellulosic-based filler may be derived include, but are not limited to, ash, aspen, cottonwood, basswood, birch, beech, chestnut, gum, elm eucalyptus, maple, oak, poplar, sycamore, and combinations thereof. Specific examples of suitable softwoods from which the lignocellulosic-based filler may be derived include, but are not limited to, spruce, fir, hemlock, tamarack, larch, pine, cypress, redwood, and combinations thereof. Combinations of different hardwoods, combinations of different softwoods, combinations of hardwood(s) and softwood(s), or combinations of one or both of hardwoods and softwoods with plywood, may be utilized together as the lignocellulosic-based filler. The lignocellulosic-based filler may be virgin, recycled, or a combination thereof.

[0028] The lignocellulosic-based filler may have any form and size, e.g., from nanometer to millimeter particle size. For example, the lignocellulosic-based filler may comprise a powder, a pulp, a flour, sawdust, a fiber, a flake, a chip, a shaving, a strand, a scrim, a wafer, a wool, a straw, a particle, or any combination thereof. The lignocellulosic-based filler may be formed via a variety of techniques known to one of skill in the art, typically as a function of the form thereof. For example, the lignocellulosic-based filler can be prepared by comminuting logs, branches, industrial wood residue, rough pulpwood, etc. The lignocellulosic-based filler may be comminuted to a desired particle size. For example, the lignocellulosic-based filler may be comminuted with any convenient equipment, such as a hammer mill, which results in the lignocellulosic-based filler having a particle size suitable for use in mixing processes. The desired particle size is typically selected by one of skill in the art based on the particular mixing process utilized and desired properties of the polymer composite article. By particle size, it is meant the dimensions of the lignocellulosic-based filler, regardless of shape, and includes, for example, dimensions associated with the lignocellulosic-based filler when in the form of fibers. As known in the art, lignocellulosic-based fillers may be pelletized, or otherwise in the form of pellets, which may substantially maintain shape and dimension when incorporated into the composition or which may form smaller particles in the composition.

[0029] Alternatively, the (A) filler may comprise a polysaccharide filler, which may comprise both a cellulose or hemicellulose derivative and optionally lignin. Alternatively, the polysaccharide filler may consist essentially of, alternatively consist of polymers consisting of subunits of B-D glucose. Alternatively, the polysaccharide filler may comprise starches, pullulans, pectins, dextrans, alginates or animal derived polysaccharides such as chitin and chitosan.

[0030] In certain embodiments, the (A) filler is selected from a lignocellulosic filler, a mineral filler, a glass filler, a carbon filler, a pigment, and combinations thereof. In certain embodiments, the (A) filler consists essentially of a lignocellulosic filler, a mineral filler, a glass filler, a carbon filler, a pigment, and combinations thereof. In specific embodiments, the (A) filler consists of a lignocellulosic filler, a mineral filler, a glass filler, a carbon filler, a pigment, and combinations thereof. When the (A) filler comprises the mineral filler, the mineral filler is typically selected from calcium carbonate (CaCC>3) and/or talc. In such embodiments, the mineral filler may be a reinforcing filler, an extending filler, or both in the composition and the plastic composite article formed therewith. The selection of the (A) filler is typically a function of the polymer composite article to be formed with the composition and the end use applications of the polymer composite article.

[0031] Regardless of the selection of the (A) filler, the (A) filler may be untreated, pretreated, or added to form the composition in conjunction with an optional filler treating agent, which when so added may treat the (A) filler in situ in the composition.

[0032] The filler treating agent may comprise a silane such as an alkoxysilane, an alkoxy- functional oligosiloxane, a cyclic polyorganosiloxane, a hydroxyl-functional oligosiloxane such as a dimethyl siloxane or methyl phenyl siloxane, an organosilicon compound, a stearate, or a fatty acid. The filler treating agent may comprise a single filler treating agent, or a combination of two or more filler treating agents selected from similar or different types of molecules.

[0033] The filler treating agent may comprise an alkoxysilane, which may be a mono- alkoxysilane, a di-alkoxysilane, a tri-alkoxysilane, or a tetra-alkoxysilane. Alkoxysilane filler treating agents are exemplified by hexyltrimethoxysilane, octyltriethoxysilane, decyltrimethoxysilane, dodecyltrimethoxysilane, tetradecyltrimethoxysilane, phenyltrimethoxysilane, phenylethyltrimethoxysilane, octadecyltrimethoxysilane, octadecyltriethoxysilane, and a combination thereof. In certain aspects the alkoxysilane(s) may be used in combination with silazanes, which catalyze the less reactive alkoxysilane reaction with surface hydroxyls. Such reactions are typically performed above 100 °C with high shear with the removal of volatile by-products such as ammonia, methanol and water.

[0034] Suitable filler treating agents also include alkoxysilyl functional alkylmethyl polysiloxanes, or similar materials where the hydrolyzable group may comprise, for example, silazane, acyloxy or oximo.

[0035] Alkoxy-functional oligosiloxanes can also be used as filler treating agents. Alkoxy- functional oligosiloxanes and methods for their preparation are generally known in the art. Other filler treating agents include mono-endcapped alkoxy functional polydiorganosiloxanes, i.e., polyorganosiloxanes having alkoxy functionality at one end.

[0036] Alternatively, the filler treating agent can be any of the organosilicon compounds typically used to treat silica fillers. Examples of organosilicon compounds include organochlorosilanes such as methyltrichlorosilane, dimethyldichlorosilane, and trimethyl monochlorosilane; organosiloxanes such as hydroxy-endblocked dimethylsiloxane oligomer, silicon hydride functional siloxanes, hexamethyldisiloxane, and tetramethyldivinyldisiloxane; organosilazanes such as hexamethyldisilazane and hexamethylcyclotrisilazane; and organoalkoxysilanes such as alkylalkoxysilanes with Methyl, Propyl, n-Butyl, i-Butyl, n-Hexyl, n-Octyl, i-Octyl, n-Decyl, dodecyl, tetradecyl, hexadecyl, or octadecyl substituents. Organoreactive alkoxysilanes can include amino, methacryloxy, vinyl, glycidoxy, epoxycyclohexyl, isocyanurato, isocyanato, mercapto, sulfido, vinyl-benzyl-amino, benzyl- amino, or phenyl-amino substituents. Alternatively, the filler treating agent may comprise an organopolysiloxane. The use of such a filler treating agent to treat the surface of the (A) filler may take advantage of multiple hydrogen bonds, either clustered or dispersed or both, as the method to bond the organosiloxane to the surface of the (A) filler. The organosiloxane capable of hydrogen bonding has an average, per molecule, of at least one silicon-bonded group capable of hydrogen bonding. The group may be selected from: a monovalent organic group having multiple hydroxyl functionalities or a monovalent organic group having at least one amino functional group. Hydrogen bonding may be a primary mode of bonding of the organosiloxane to the (A) filler. The organosiloxane may be incapable of forming covalent bonds with the (A) filler. The organosiloxane capable of hydrogen bonding may be selected from the group consisting of a saccharide-siloxane polymer, an amino-functional organosiloxane , and a combination thereof. Alternatively, the polyorganosiloxane capable of hydrogen bonding may be a saccharide-siloxane polymer.

[0037] Alternatively, the filler treating agent may comprise alkylthiols such as octadecyl mercaptan and others, and fatty acids such as oleic acid, stearic acid, titanates, titanate coupling agents, zirconate coupling agents, and a combination thereof. One skilled in the art could optimize a filler treating agent to aid dispersion of the (A) filler without undue experimentation.

[0038] If utilized, the relative amount of the filler treatment agent and the (A) filler is selected based on the particular filler utilized as well as the filler treatment agent, and desired effect or properties thereof.

[0039] The (A) filler is present in the composition in an amount of from 10 to 90, alternatively from 10 to 80, alternatively from 20 to 75, alternatively 30 to 70, and alternatively from 45 to 65, weight percent based on the total weight of the composition. In certain other embodiments, the (A) filler is present in the composition in an amount of from 20 to 50 weight percent based on the total weight of the composition. Alternatively, the (A) filler may be present in an amount of from 65 to 85, alternatively 70 to 80, weight percent based on total weight of the composition for certain applications, such as wood-plastic composites or mineral filled composites. Alternatively, for certain applications, it is desirable to maximize the relative amount of the (A) filler in the composition, which reduces overall cost thereof, so long as desirable properties of the polymer composite article formed therewith are maintained or obtained. One of skill in the art understands that the amount of the (A) filler may be modified for this purpose, including a balance of cost and resulting properties, as well as the presence or absence of other optional components, as described below.

[0040] Further still, the (A) filler may comprise a blend of different types of fillers. For example, when the composition is utilized to prepare a wood plastic composite, the (A) filler may comprise a blend of a lignocellulosic filler and a reinforcing filler, e.g. talc and/or calcium carbonate. Further, specific fillers, such as those for fire resistance, can also be included to customize or selectively control or improve properties of the polymer composite article. In such embodiments, the composition may comprise, for example, up to 50 weight percent lignocellulosic filler, up to 20 weight percent mineral filler, and optionally some lesser amount of other types of filler, each based on the combined weight of components (A), (B) and (C).

[0041] (B) Polymer

[0042] The composition further comprises (B) a polymer. The polymer may form all or a part of a continuous phase in the composition for preparing the polymer composite article and the composite article prepared therefrom. In specific embodiments, the (B) polymer is a thermoplastic. In other specific embodiments, the (B) polymer is an elastomer. The selection of the (B) polymer is typically a function of the desired end use application of the polymer composite article formed with the composition, as various polymers have different melting point temperatures (and/or glass transition temperatures) and physical/mechanical properties, as well as suitable or acceptable continuous use application temperatures. In certain embodiments, the (B) polymer has a softening point temperature that is less than a degradation temperature of other components in the composition. In these embodiments, the (B) polymer has softening point temperature of less than 425 °C, alternatively less than 400 °C, alternatively less than 375°C. The softening point temperature may also be referred to as the processing temperature. The (B) polymer comprises, alternatively is, a polyvinyl. In certain embodiments, the (B) polymer is a powder.

[0043] Non-limiting examples of suitable polyvinyls include polyvinyl chlorides, polyvinyl alcohols, polyvinyl esters (vinylester or polyvinyl acetates), and combinations thereof. In specific embodiments, the (B) polymer comprises a polyvinyl chloride. In one embodiment, the (B) polymer is polyvinyl chloride. These polymers may alternatively be referred to as plastics. Additionally, elastomers and/or rubbers can be added to or compounded with the (B) polymer to modify or improve properties, such as impact strength.

[0044] In certain embodiments, the (B) polymer consists essentially of a polyvinyl. By consist essentially of, it is meant that the (B) polymer can include one or more additional polymers other than a polyvinyl so long as such additional polymers can be processed along with the (B) polymer to form the polymer composite article. In yet other embodiments, the (B) polymer consists of a polyvinyl. When the (B) polymer does not consist of a polyvinyl, the (B) polymer typically includes a polyvinyl in an amount of at least 50, alternatively at least 60, alternatively at least 65, alternatively at least 70, alternatively at least 75, alternatively at least 80, alternatively at least 85, alternatively at least 90, alternatively at least 95, alternatively at least 96, alternatively at least 97, alternatively at least 98, alternatively at least 99, wt.% based on the total weight of the (B) polymer utilized in the composition.

[0045] When the (B) polymer comprises a polymer other than and in addition to a polyvinyl, the (B) polymer may further comprise polyolefins (e.g. polyethylenes (PE), polypropylenes (PP), polybutylenes, poly (1 -butene), polyisobutene, poly(l -pentene), poly(3-methyl-1 - pentene), poly(4-methyl-1 -hexene), poly(5-methyl-1 -hexene), etc.), polycycloolefins, polyamides (e.g. nylon 6, nylon 66, etc.), polyesters (e.g. polyethylene terephthalates (PET), polybutylene terephthalates (PBT), polytrimethylene terephthalates (PTT), polyethylene naphthalates (PEN), liquid crystalline polyesters, polycyclohexylenedimethylene terephthalate (PCT) etc.), polycarbonates, polystyrenes, polyimides, polyphenylene sulfides; polyphenylene ethers; polyamideimides, polyoxymethylenes (POM), ethylene vinyl alcohol (EVOH), ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA), ethylene alkyl (meth)acrylates, ethylene propylene diene monomer (EPDM), ethylene propylene rubber (EPR), acrylics (e.g. polymethylmethacrylate), celluloses (e.g. triacetylcellulose, diacetylcellulose, cellophane, etc.), polyurethanes, polyetherimides (PEI); polysulfones (PSU); polyethersulfones; polyketones (PK); polyetherketones (PEK); polyetheretherketones (PEEK); polyetherketoneketones (PEKK); polyarylates (PAR); polyethernitriles (PEN); polysulfones; polyethersulfones; polyphenylsulfones; polyetherimides; resol-type; urea (e.g. melamine- type); ABS (acrylonitrile butadiene styrenic polymer), fluorinated resins, such as polytetrafluoroethylenes; thermoplastic vulcanizates; styrenics; thermoplastic elastomers, such as polystyrene types, polyolefin types, polyurethane types, polyester types, polyamide types, polybutadiene types, polyisoprene types, fluoro types, and the like; and copolymers, modifications, and combinations thereof.

[0046] The (B) polymer may further comprise an elastomer. Non-limiting examples of elastomers include styrene-butadiene rubber, polyether urethane rubber, polyester urethane rubber, butyl rubber, nitrile rubber, chloroprene rubber (neoprene), polyacrylate rubber, ethylene acrylate rubber, ethylene-propylene rubber, ethylene-propylene-diene rubber, ethylene propylene diene monomer (EPDM), ethylene propylene rubber (EPR), fluorosilicone rubber, fluorocarbon rubber, perfluorinated elastomer, styrene butadiene rubber, chlorosulfonated polyethylene, polyisoprene rubber, polysulfide rubber, ethylene acrylate rubber, epichlorohydrine rubber, perfluoroelastomer (e.g. Kalrez™), polysulfide rubber, chlorinated polyethylene (e.g. chlorinated polyethylene comprising up to 40 weight percent chlorine), and combinations thereof.

[0047] Regardless of the (B) polymer utilized, the (B) polymer can comprise virgin polymer and/or recycled polymer. The recycled polymer, if utilized, may be sourced from industrial production streams, as well as from post-industrial and/or post-consumer sources. The selection of the (B) polymer, as well as any ratio of virgin polymer to recycled polymer, if utilized in concert, is typically a function of cost and desired properties of the polymer composite article formed therewith.

[0048] The (B) polymer may be present in the composition in an amount of from 10 to 90, alternatively from 20 to 90, alternatively from 25 to 80, alternatively from 30 to 70, alternatively from 35 to 55, alternatively from 40 to 50, weight percent based on the total weight of the composition. In specific embodiments, it is desirable to minimize the relative amount of the (B) polymer in the composition, which may reduce overall cost thereof depending on selection, so long as desirable properties of the polymer composite article formed therewith are maintained or obtained. One of skill in the art understands that the amount of the (B) polymer may be modified for this purpose, including a balance of cost and resulting properties, as well as the presence or absence of other optional components, as described below.

[0049] In specific embodiments, the (A) filler comprises, alternatively is, a lignocellulosic filler such that the polymer composite article formed thereby is a wood plastic composite. In such embodiments, the (B) polymer may be present in an amount of from 10 to 90, alternatively from 15 to 80, alternatively from 20 to 75, alternatively from 20 to 70, alternatively from 20 to 65, alternatively from 20 to 60, weight percent based on the combined weight of components (A), (B) and (C). In other such embodiments, the (B) polymer may be present in an amount of from 40 to 90, alternatively from 40 to 85, alternatively from 40 to 80, alternatively from 40 to 75, alternatively from 40 to 70, alternatively from 40 to 65, alternatively from 40 to 60, weight percent based on the combined weight of components (A), (B) and (C). In yet other such embodiments, the (B) polymer may be present in an amount of from 60 to 90, alternatively from 60 to 85, alternatively from 60 to 80, alternatively from 60 to 75, alternatively from 60 to 70, alternatively from 60 to 65, weight percent based on the combined weight of components (A), (B) and (C). Alternatively still, the (B) polymer may be present in an amount of from 80 to 90 weight percent based on the combined weight of components (A), (B) and (C).

[0050] In other specific embodiments, the (A) filler comprises, alternatively is, a mineral filler, a glass fiber, a carbon fiber, or combinations thereof. In such embodiments, the (B) polymer may be present in an amount of from 40 to 90, alternatively from 45 to 85, alternatively from 40 to 80, alternatively from 45 to 80, alternatively from 50 to 80, alternatively from 55 to 80, alternatively from 60 to 80, weight percent based on the combined weight of components (A), (B) and (C).

[0051] (C) Orqanopolvsiloxane

[0052] The composition further comprises (C) an organopolysiloxane. The (C) organopolysiloxane has at least one silicon-bonded hydroxyl group. The (C) organopolysiloxane has a viscosity of at least 120 mPa-s at 25 °C, alternatively from 120 mPa-s to 250,000 mPa-s. In certain embodiments, the (C) organopolysiloxane has a viscosity of from 1 ,000 to 60,000, alternatively from 1 ,000 to 50,000, alternatively from 2,000 to 50,000, mPa-s at 25°C. Viscosity may be measured at 25°C at 0.1 to 50 RPM on a Brookfield DV-III cone & plate viscometer with #52 spindle. One skilled in the art would understand that as viscosity of the organopolysiloxane increases, RPM of the viscosity test method will decrease from 50 to 0.1 RPM.

[0053] Alternatively, in the (C) organopolysiloxane, the silicon-bonded OH groups may be present in an amount of at least 50 ppm based on the weight of the (C) organopolysiloxane. Alternatively, the silicon-bonded OH groups may be present in an amount of 50 ppm to 15,000 ppm; alternatively 50 ppm to 10,000 ppm; alternatively 2,500 ppm to 7,500 ppm; and alternatively 10,000 to 15,000 ppm, on the same basis. The silicon-bonded OH content may be measured by Fourier Transform Infra-Red (FTIR) spectroscopy.

[0054] The (C) organopolysiloxane may comprise two or more different organopolysiloxanes, which may be independently selected. Typically, the (C) organopolysiloxane serves as a process aid in the composition and the polymer composite article. Without wishing to be bound by theory, the (C) organopolysiloxane may be an internal and/or external process aid. However, the (C) organopolysiloxane may serve other purposes, in addition to or alternatively to serving as a process aid, e.g. to modify physical or mechanical properties of the composition and the polymer composite article.

[0055] Generally speaking, depending on a section of the (C) organopolysiloxane, various advantages can be realized. When the composition is mixed in an extruder, for example, the (C) organopolysiloxane generally reduces a melt temperature of the composition in the extruder. The reduction in melt temperature refers to the temperature of the composition in the extruder as opposed to the melting point temperature of any one individual component in the composition (and in the extruder). Importantly, this allows for processing of the composition at reduced temperatures, which provides myriad benefits, including cost and aesthetics. For example, certain fillers, such as lignocellulosic fillers, can char or degrade at certain elevated processing temperatures of the composition, typically required to make the composition flowable. Use of the (C) organopolysiloxane allows for preparing the polymer composite article at a reduced temperature without degrading, charring or otherwise deleteriously impacting the (A) filler and other aspects of the polymer composite article. Moreover, when the composition is mixed in an extruder, a torque of the extruder is generally reduced by inclusion of the (C) organopolysiloxane. Reduced torque allows for greater output, which is particularly important from the perspective of production throughput.

[0056] In certain embodiments, (i) an extrusion processing temperature reduced as compared to an extrusion processing temperature of a mixture of the (A) filler and the (B) polymer without the (C) organopolysiloxane; and/or (ii) a torque of the extruder is reduced when mixing the composition as compared to a torque of the extruder when extruding a mixture of the (A) filler and the (B) polymer without the (C) organopolysiloxane. Extrusion processing temperature is the temperature at which the composition is generally processable in the extruder, e.g. to melt the (B) polymer and other components in the composition. Extrusion processing temperature is distinguished from the melting point temperature of any one component in the composition.

[0057] The (C) organopolysiloxane may be linear, branched, partly branched, cyclic, resinous (i.e., have a three-dimensional network), or may comprise a combination of different structures. For example, the (C) organopolysiloxane may comprise any combination of M, D, T and/or Q siloxy units, so long as the (C) organopolysiloxane includes at least one silicon- bonded hydroxyl group. These siloxy units can be combined in various manners to form cyclic, linear, branched and/or resinous (three-dimensional networked) structures.

[0058] In certain embodiments, the (C) organopolysiloxane has the following average unit formula: [R3SiO-|/2] a [R2Si02/2]b[ RSi0 3/2]c[ Si0 4/2]cl·

wherein each R is independently selected from OH and hydrocarbyl groups, with the proviso that in at least one molecule, at least one R is OH; 0 < a < 0.99; 0 < b < 0.99; 0 < c < 0.2; and 0 < d < 0.2, with the proviso that a+b+c+d=1 .

[0059] Each R that is not OH may independently be linear, branched, cyclic, or combinations thereof. Cyclic hydrocarbyl groups encompass aryl groups as well as saturated or non-conjugated cyclic groups. Aryl groups may be monocyclic or polycyclic. Linear and branched hydrocarbyl groups may independently be saturated or unsaturated. One example of a combination of a linear and cyclic hydrocarbyl group is an aralkyl group. When R is not an aryl group, R is saturated, i.e., R is free from ethylenic unsaturation.

[0060] Hydrocarbyl groups may be exemplified by methyl, ethyl, propyl, isopropyl, butyl, isobutyl, t-butyl, pentyl, hexyl, cyclohexyl, heptyl, octyl, nonyl, decyl, or similar alkyl groups; and phenyl, tolyl, xylyl, naphthyl, or similar aryl groups; benzyl, phenethyl, or similar aralkyl groups.

[0061] The silicon-bonded OH group(s) may be present in any M, D, and/or T siloxy unit present in the (C) organopolysiloxane, and may be bonded to the same silicon atom (in the case of M and/or D siloxy units). The (C) organopolysiloxane may comprise, for example, as M siloxy units: (R3S1O-1/2), (R2(OH)SiO-|/2), (R(OH)2SiO-|/2), and/or ((OH)3SiO-|/2). The (C) organopolysiloxane may comprise, for example, as D siloxy units: (R2S1O2/2), (R(0H)Si02/2) > and/or ((0H)2Si02 2)· The (C) organopolysiloxane may comprise, for example, as T siloxy units: (RS1O3/2) and/or ((OH)SiC>3/2). Such siloxy units may be combined in any manner, optionally along with Q siloxy units, to give an organopolysiloxane having at least one silicon-bonded OH group.

[0062] The (C) organopolysiloxane is branched or resinous when the (C) organopolysiloxane includes T siloxy units and/or Q siloxy units. When the (C) organopolysiloxane is branched or resinous, the (C) organopolysiloxane is typically a copolymer including T siloxy units and/or Q siloxy units in combination with M siloxy units and/or D siloxy units. For example, (C) organopolysiloxane can be a DT resin, an MT resin, an MDT resin, a DTQ resin, an MTQ resin, an MDTQ resin, a DQ resin, an MQ resin, a DTQ resin, an MTQ resin, or an MDQ resin. Alternatively, in certain embodiments, the (C) organopolysiloxane is linear, in which case the (C) organopolysiloxane comprises D siloxy units in combination with M siloxy units.

[0063] In certain embodiments, the (C) organopolysiloxane has the following average unit formula: [ r1 3-n(° H )n Si °1/2]a’[ Rl 2-m(° H )m Si0 2/2]b’[ Rl Si 03/2]c’[ Si 04/2]d’;

wherein each R 1 is an independently selected hydrocarbyl group; n is 0, 1 , 2, or 3, m is 0, 1 or 2, with the proviso that n and m are not simultaneously 0; 0 < a’ < 1 ; 0 < b’ < 1 ; 0 < c’ < 0.1 ; and 0 £ d’ £ 0.1 , with the proviso that a’+b’+c’+d’=1. In this average unit formula, the at least one silicon-bonded OH group is present in the M and/or D siloxy units of the (C) organopolysiloxane.

[0064] In specific embodiments, the (C) organopolysiloxane is substantially linear, alternatively linear. In these embodiments, the (C) organopolysiloxane is substantially free, alternatively free, from T siloxy and/or Q siloxy units. For example, in these specific embodiments, the (C) organopolysiloxane may have the following average unit formula:

[Rl 3.n (0H) n Si0i/ 2 ]a"[R 1 2-m(0H) m Si02/2]b" wherein each R 1 is an independently selected hydrocarbyl group; n is 0, 1 , 2, or 3, m is 0, 1 or 2, with the proviso that n and m are not simultaneously 0; 0 < a” < 1 ; 0 < b” < 1 ; with the proviso that a”+b”=1 . In certain embodiments, n is 1 , 2, or 3. In these or other embodiments, m is 0 such that the silicon-bonded OH group(s) are located in the M siloxy units and thus are terminal. Given the viscosity of the (C) organopolysiloxane, as introduced above and described below, typically b”>a”. Each R 1 is typically methyl.

[0065] When the (C) organopolysiloxane is substantially linear, alternatively linear, and includes terminal silicon-bonded OH group(s), the (C) organopolysiloxane may have the following average unit formula:

R 1 3 -x(OH) x SiO[SiRl 2 0] c ”Si(0H) y Rl 3-y

wherein each R 1 is an independently selected hydrocarbyl group; x is 0, 1 , 2, or 3, y is 0, 1 , 2, or 3, with the proviso that x and y are not simultaneously 0; and c” has a value sufficient to provide the desired viscosity of the (C) organopolysiloxane, alternatively c” is from 60 to 1 ,200, alternatively 100 to 1 ,200. In certain embodiments, x is 1 , 2, or 3 and y is 1 , 2, or 3. Subscript c” relates to the number of repeating D units and the degree of polymerization (DP) of the (C) organopolysiloxane. As understood in the art, both the selection of R 1 and the DP impact viscosity of the (C) organopolysiloxane.

[0066] Regardless of the (C) organopolysiloxane utilized, the (C) organopolysiloxane has a viscosity of at least 1 ,000 mPa-s measured at 25 q C at RPM ranging from 0.1 to 50 on a Brookfield DV-III cone & plate viscometer with #52 spindle. For example, the (C) organopolysiloxane may have a viscosity of from 120 to 250,000, alternatively from 10,000 to 100,000, mPa-s at 25 °C tested under conditions outlined above. Typically, the (C) organopolysiloxane has a viscosity of from 1 ,000 to 60,000, alternatively from 1 ,000 to 50,000, alternatively from 2,000 to 50,000, mPa-s at 25 °C tested under the conditions outlined above.

[0067] The (C) organopolysiloxane may further comprise a carrier vehicle. The carrier vehicle may comprise an organic carrier vehicle, optionally an organic solvent, contingent on whether the (C) organopolysiloxane is merely carried by or dispersed in the carrier vehicle, or whether the (C) organopolysiloxane is solubilized in the carrier vehicle. For example, the (C) organopolysiloxane may be solubilized in the carrier vehicle, or emulsified in the carrier vehicle, e.g. when the carrier vehicle is water. Specific examples of suitable carrier vehicles include an alcohol such as methanol, ethanol, isopropanol, butanol, or n-propanol; a ketone such as acetone, methylethyl ketone, or methyl isobutyl ketone; an aromatic hydrocarbon such as benzene, toluene, or xylene; an aliphatic hydrocarbon such as heptane, hexane, or octane; a glycol ether such as propylene glycol methyl ether, dipropylene glycol methyl ether, propylene glycol n-butyl ether, propylene glycol n-propyl ether, or ethylene glycol n-butyl ether, a halogenated hydrocarbon such as dichloromethane, 1 ,1 ,1 -trichloroethane or methylene chloride; chloroform; dimethyl sulfoxide; dimethyl formamide, acetonitrile; tetrahydrofuran; white spirits; mineral spirits; naphtha; n-methyl pyrrolidone; or a combination thereof.

[0068] Suitable carrier vehicles also include silicones, both linear and cyclic, organic oils, organic solvents and mixtures of these. For example, relative to silicones, the carrier vehicle may comprise a polydialkylsiloxane, e.g. polydimethylsiloxane. The carrier vehicle may also be a mineral filler, e.g. as the (A) filler of the composition.

[0069] The carrier vehicle may also be a low viscosity organopolysiloxane or a volatile methyl siloxane or a volatile ethyl siloxane or a volatile methyl ethyl siloxane having a viscosity at 25° C in the range of 1 to 1 ,000 mm 2 /sec, such as hexamethylcyclotrisiloxane, octamethylcyclotetrasiloxane, decamethylcyclopentasiloxane, dodecamethylcyclohexasiloxane, octamethyltrisiloxane, decamethyltetrasiloxane, dodecamethylpentasiloxane, tetradecamethylhexasiloxane, hexadeamethylheptasiloxane, heptamethyl-3-{(trimethylsilyl)oxy)}trisiloxane, hexamethyl-3,3, bis{(trimethylsilyl)oxy}trisiloxane pentamethyl{(trimethylsilyl)oxy}cyclotrisiloxane as well as polydimethylsiloxanes, polyethylsiloxanes, polymethylethylsiloxanes, polymethylphenylsiloxanes, polydiphenylsiloxanes, caprylyl methicone, and any mixtures thereof.

[0070] Flowever, the (C) organopolysiloxane is typically utilized neat, i.e., in the absence of any carrier vehicle. If the (C) organopolysiloxane comprises the carrier vehicle, the viscosities referenced above are typically applicable to an organopolysiloxane of the (C) organopolysiloxane without regard to the carrier vehicle, as the carrier vehicle may reduce viscosity of the (C) organopolysiloxane. Further still, the carrier vehicle may be initially present with the (C) organopolysiloxane and driven therefrom prior to making the composition and/or polymer composite article therewith. For example, the carrier vehicle may be present when combining the components of the composition and subsequently volatilized or removed (before and/or during preparation of the polymer composite article), as described in greater detail below in connection with the inventive method.

[0071] The (C) organopolysiloxane is typically utilized in an amount of from greater than 0 to 10, alternatively from 0.25 to 9, alternatively from 0.25 to 5, alternatively from 0.5 to 5, alternatively from 0.8 to 4, alternatively from 1 to 4, alternatively from 1 to 3, wt.% based on the total weight of the composition. In a specific embodiment, the (C) organopolysiloxane is utilized in an amount of from 0.75 to 3 wt.% based on the total weight of the composition.

[0072] In a specific embodiment, the (A) filler comprises, alternatively is, a lignocellulosic filler, and the (B) polymer comprises, alternatively is, polyvinyl chloride. In such embodiments, the (C) organopolysiloxane is typically utilized in an amount of from 0.5 to 3 weight percent based on the combined weight of components (A), (B), and (C).

[0073] In another specific embodiment, the (A) filler comprises, alternatively is, talc, and the (B) polymer comprises, alternatively is, polyvinyl chloride. In such embodiments, the (C) organopolysiloxane is typically utilized in an amount of from 0.25 to 5, alternatively from 0.25 to 2, alternatively from 1 to 5, weight percent based on the combined weight of components (A), (B), and (C).

[0074] In another specific embodiment, the (A) filler comprises, alternatively is, calcium carbonate, and the (B) polymer comprises, alternatively is, polyvinyl chloride. In such embodiments, the (C) organopolysiloxane is typically utilized in an amount of from 0.25 to 5, alternatively from 0.25 to 2, alternatively from 1 to 5, weight percent based on the combined weight of components (A), (B), and (C).

[0075] The (C) organopolysiloxane may be utilized in a neat (unadulterated) form but alternatively may be provided in any other suitable form, it may for example be provided in a diluted liquid form in combination with the aforementioned carrier vehicle or alternatively may be provided in a solid form. In certain embodiments, the (C) organopolysiloxane is a liquid at 25 °C.

[0076] Alternatively, the (C) organopolysiloxane may be part of a solid carrier component. The solid carrier component is a solid at ambient temperature and pressure ( e.g . 25°C and 1 atmosphere). The solid carrier component may be formed by combining the (C) organopolysiloxane with one or more other starting materials in the composition. The solid carrier component is typically in particulate form, and may be, for example, in the form of particles, pellets, powders, etc. An average particle size of the solid carrier component is a function of desired properties thereof. In certain embodiments, the solid carrier component is a powder. In other embodiments, the solid carrier component is a pellet. Pellets typically have greater average particle sizes than powders.

[0077] In one embodiment, the solid carrier component is a combination of the (C) organopolysiloxane described above and a filler, described above. The (A) filler can be all or a portion of the filler described above as component (A). In this embodiment, the (C) organopolysiloxane may be the substantially linear, alternatively linear, organopolysiloxane described above. The (C) organopolysiloxane may have the following average unit formula (I) or (II):

[R^ 3-n(OH) n Si0 1 /2 ] a ”[R 1 2 -m(CH) m Si0 2/2 ] b ” (I)

wherein each R 1 is an independently selected hydrocarbyl group; n is 0, 1 , 2, or 3, m is 0, 1 or 2, with the proviso that n and m are not simultaneously 0; 0 < a” < 1 ; 0 < b” < 1 ; with the proviso that a”+b”=1 ; or

R 1 3 -x(OH) x SiO[SiRl 2 0] c ”Si(0H) y Rl 3-y ( ,

wherein each R 1 is an independently selected hydrocarbyl group; x is 0, 1 , 2, or 3, y is 0, 1 , 2, or 3, with the proviso that x and y are not simultaneously 0; and c” is from 60 to 1 ,200. In this embodiment, the solid carrier component comprises 5% to 95% of a filler (A) and 95% to 5% of an organopolysiloxane (C) as described above. Suitable linear organopolysiloxanes for starting material (C) include a bis-hydroxyl terminated polydimethylsiloxane with a dynamic viscosity of 1 ,000 to 60,000 mPa-s, commercially available from Dow Silicones Corporation of Midland, Michigan, USA or other hydroxyl terminated polydimethylsiloxane, e.g., with different viscosity, commercially available from Dow Silicones Corporation. The (C) organopolysiloxane and the (A) filler may be combined via any convenient means to form solid carrier components.

[0078] Alternatively, the solid carrier component may be formed by combining the (C) organopolysiloxane with all or a portion of the (B) polymer described above, such as polyvinyl chloride, before combining the solid carrier component with other components in the composition.

[0079] Alternatively, the (C) organopolysiloxane may be combined with one or more of a portion of component (A) filler, a portion of component (B) polymer, and all or a portion of component (D) to form the solid carrier component before combining the solid carrier component with other starting materials in the composition.

[0080] Alternatively, the solid carrier component may be formed by combining the (C) organopolysiloxane with a (D) compatibilizer, such as a functionalized polymer, before combining the solid carrier component with the other components of the composition. The functionalized polymer may be all or a portion of the (D) compatibilizer, such as a modified polyethylene or modified polypropylene, as described herein.

[0081] The amount of the functionalized polymer and amount of the (C) organopolysiloxane in the solid carrier component depends on various factors including the type of functionalized polymer and the molecular weight and viscosity of the (C) organopolysiloxane. However, the amount of organopolysiloxane in the solid carrier component is sufficient to provide >0 to 10%, alternatively 1 % to 4%, and alternatively 1 % to 3% of the (C) organopolysiloxane in the composition when the solid carrier component is combined with the other starting materials in the composition. Alternatively, the solid carrier component may comprise 70% to 95% functionalized polymer and 5% to 30% of the (C) organopolysiloxane.

[0082] In one embodiment, the solid carrier component comprises up to 40, alternatively up to 30, alternatively up to 25, alternatively up to 20, wt.% of the (C) organopolysiloxane, with the balance being the polymer described above as component (B) and/or the functionalized polymer as described above.

[0083] In an alternative embodiment, the solid carrier component may comprise the (C) organopolysiloxane, and a polymer compound such as the polymer described above as component (B) and/or the functionalized polymer as described above, and/or the (A) filler, such as that described above, or a combination of two or more of filler and polymer compound, where the relative amounts of the (C) organopolysiloxane, polymer, functionalized polymer, and the (A) filler are such that when the solid carrier component is combined with components comprising the (A) filler and the (B) polymer to make the composition for preparing the polymer composite article described herein, the resulting composition comprises:

(A) the filler in an amount of from 10 to 90 wt.%;

(B) the polymer in an amount of from 10 to 90 wt.%; and

a solid carrier component comprising the (C) organopolysiloxane and at least one other component in an amount sufficient to provide to the composition an amount of component

(C) of from greater than 0 to 10 wt.%, each based on the total weight of components (A), (B) and (C) in the composition.

[0084] The solid carrier component including the (C) organopolysiloxane described above and at least one other component may be prepared by forming a mixed composition from the polymer compound (e.g., the polymer described as component (B) and/or the (D) compatibilizer, e.g. the functionalized polymer described above, and/or a combination thereof) and the (C) organopolysiloxane, described above, which may be formed by dispersing under mixing or shear, e.g., with suitable mixing equipment. Alternatively, the mixed composition may further comprise a portion of the (A) filler, as described above. For example, the mixed composition may be dispersed in a vessel equipped with an agitator and/or mixing blades. The vessel may be, for example, an internal mixer, such as a Banbury, Sigma (Z) Blade, or Cavity Transfer style mixer. Alternatively or in addition, the mixed composition may be dispersed in or processed by an extruder, which may be any extruder, e.g., a single screw extruder with rotational and/or reciprocating (co-kneader) screws, as well as multi-screw devices comprising two or more screws, which may be aligned tangentially or partially/fully intermeshing, revolving in either a co- or counter-rotational direction. Alternatively, a conical extruder may be used for disperse the mixed composition described herein.

[0085] The solid carrier components prepared as described above are re-processable and may be prepared for feeding in subsequent processes. The mixed composition prepared as described above may be, for example, substantially continuous ribbons or discontinuous pellets or particles or powders. Substantially continuous ribbons can be formed by pressurizing the mixed composition and passing it through a die to create continuous strands or tapes that are subsequently cooled before being suitably packaged. Alternatively, the strand or tape may be comminuted to form pellets or powders. The mixing device may also produce the pressure needed to process the mixed composition through the die when the mixing device is an extruder, which may be any extruder, e.g. a single screw extruder with rotational and/or reciprocating (co-kneader) screws, as well as multi-screw devices comprising two or more screws, which may be aligned tangentially or partially/fully intermeshing, revolving in either a co- or counter-rotational direction. A conical extruder may be used for mixing and pressurizing the mixed composition. Alternately, a gear pump may be used to generate the pressure needed for extrusion after the mixed composition has been mixed. Discontinuous forms of the mixed composition may be created by chopping continuous ribbons of mixed composition into shorter lengths. Alternatively, large pieces of mixed composition may be reduced to usable sizes by use of a grinder or shredder.

[0086] In certain embodiments, the solid carrier component may be formed by a method performed continuously or semi-continuously in an extruder, such as a twin screw extruder (in which the screws are concurrently rotated, partially or fully intermeshing, alternatively counter rotated aligned either tangentially or partially or fully intermeshing). In one embodiment, the (C) organopolysiloxane is disposed in the extruder concurrently with the polymer (and optionally the (A) filler). Alternatively, the (C) organopolysiloxane may be disposed in the extruder after melting the polymer (and before adding the (A) filler, if any will be added to the mixed composition. Alternatively, the (C) organopolysiloxane may be disposed in the extruder after the (A) filler, when present, and the polymer and before the polymer mixture exits the extruder. Alternatively, the (A) filler may be disposed in the extruder concurrently with (C) organopolysiloxane, then the (B) polymer may disposed in the extruder to give a mixture and the temperature increased to a temperature suitable for compounding the mixture. The extruder may have one or more zones, such as 1 to 3, alternatively 1 to 12, alternatively 3 to 12, or alternatively 3 to 10 zones, where components can be added. The zones may be heated at different temperatures and incorporate various functional stages including conveying, melting, mixing, deaeration, vacuum, pressurization, and forming.

[0087] In specific embodiments of the method for making the solid carrier component, the (B) polymer is disposed in a first zone of the extruder, which is heated at +/-30 °C within the melting point temperature of the polymer. The (C) organopolysiloxane is disposed in a second zone of the extruder, which is heated at 10°C to 90 °C above the melting point temperature of the polymer. The (A) filler, when present, is disposed of in either the first, second, or subsequent zones of the extruder. As noted above, the temperature utilized is typically less than a degradation temperature of the components of the composition. In certain embodiments, the mixture is stripped to remove any air, moisture or byproducts prior to pressurization and forming in the die of the extruder. The vacuum, pressurization, and forming zones may also be heated, and the temperatures utilized by the extruder, including the temperature of any zone and the die, does not exceed a degradation temperature of the polymer or (A) filler. The degradation temperature of the polymer and (A) filler is contingent on the selection thereof, as understood by one of skill in the art. The resulting extruded strand may be comminuted by any convenient means to form the solid carrier component comprising the (C) organopolysiloxane and at least one other component.

[0088] In one embodiment, the solid carrier component prepared as described above comprises: 80% maleated polyethylene and (C) 20% organopolysiloxane. In an alternative embodiment, the solid carrier component prepared as described above comprises recycled polyethylene as component (B), maleated polyethylene, and the (C) organopolysiloxane described above.

[0089] In an alternative embodiment, the solid carrier component comprises a wood flour or wood fiber as component (A), maleated polyethylene as a species of compatibilizer as component (D), and the (C) organopolysiloxane described above. In this embodiment, the solid carrier component may comprise (A) 30% of a wood fiber filler, (D) 35% maleated polyethylene, and (C) 35% of the organopolysiloxane. In an alternative embodiment, the solid carrier component comprises a mixture of calcium carbonate and talc as component (A), maleated polyethylene as component (D), and the (C) organopolysiloxane described above.

[0090] In this embodiment, the solid carrier component comprises 5% to 95% of a filler and 95% to 5% of an organopolysiloxane as described above. The (C) organopolysiloxane and the (A) filler may be combined via any convenient means, such as mixing, e.g. via a ribbon blender, a pelletizing disk, a pelletizing drum, or other suitable equipment known to those of skill in the art.

[0091] Alternatively, the solid carrier component may be formed by combining the (C) organopolysiloxane with all or a portion of the (B) polymer described above, such as polyvinyl chloride, before combining the solid carrier component with other components in the composition. Alternatively, the solid carrier component may be formed by combining the (C) organopolysiloxane with (D) a functionalized polymer as the compatibilizer before combining the solid carrier component with the other components of the composition. The functionalized polymer may be all or a portion of the (D) compatibilizer, such as a modified polyethylene or modified polypropylene, as described below, Alternatively, the (C) organopolysiloxane may be combined with two or more of a portion of component (A) filler, a portion of component (B) polymer, and all or a portion of component (D) to form the solid carrier component before combining the solid carrier component with other starting materials in the composition. The components can be combined in various orders of operation and in one or more different operations.

[0092] Examples of suitable functionalized polymers for component (D) include maleic anhydride grafted high density polyethylene (MAH-g-PE). The grafted polyethylene in the MAH-g-PE may be a high density polyethylene (HDPE), a linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE), or a polyolefin elastomer. The amount of maleic anhydride constituent grafted onto the polyethylene chain is greater than 0.05 weight percent to 3 weight percent (based on the weight of the polyethylene), as determined by titration analysis, FTIR analysis, or any other appropriate method. Alternatively, this amount is 0.6 to 2.7 weight percent based on the weight of the polyethylene. In some embodiments, the amount of maleic anhydride grafted constituents is 1 .0 to 2.0 weight percent based on the weight of the polyethylene. Alternatively, the amount of maleic anhydride grafted constituents is 1 .0 to 1 .6 weight percent, in some embodiments, based on the weight of the polyethylene. In some embodiments, the MAH-g-PE has a melt index (I2) of 0.2 g/10 minutes to 15 g/10 minutes. All individual values and subranges between 0.2 and 15 g/10 minutes are included herein and disclosed herein. For example, the MAH-g-PE can have a melt index from a lower limit of 0.2, 1 , 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, or 1 1 g/10 minutes to an upper limit of 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 1 1 , 12, 13, 14, or 15 g/10 minutes. The MAH-g-PE has a melt index (I2) of 2 to 15 g/10 minutes in some embodiments. The MAH-g-PE has a melt index (I2) of 5 to 15 g/10 minutes in some embodiments. In some embodiments, the MAH-g-PE has a melt index (I2) of 7 to 15 g/10 minutes. [0093] The graft process for MAH-g-PE can be initiated by decomposing initiators to form free radicals, including azo-containing compounds, carboxylic peroxyacids and peroxyesters, alkyl hydroperoxides, and dialkyl and diacyl peroxides, among others. Many of these compounds and their properties have been described (Reference: J. Branderup, E. Immergut, E. Grulke, eds.“Polymer Handbook,” 4th ed., Wiley, New York, 1999, Section II, pp. 1 -76.). Alternatively, the species that is formed by the decomposition of the initiator may be an oxygen-based free radical. Alternatively, the initiator may be selected from the group consisting of carboxylic peroxyesters, peroxyketals, dialkyl peroxides, and diacyl peroxides. Exemplary initiators, commonly used to modify the structure of polymers, are listed in US Patent No. 7,897,689, in the table spanning Col. 48 line 13 - Col. 49 line 29, which is hereby incorporated by reference. Alternatively, the grafting process for MAH-g-PE can be initiated by free radicals generated by thermal oxidative process.

[0094] Alternatively, in this embodiment, the solid carrier component may comprise the (C) organopolysiloxane and the functionalized polymer as the (D) compatibilizer. The functionalized polymer may be a functionalized polyolefin copolymer, which may be a graft copolymer which includes a polyolefin base and grafted residues of one or more grafting monomers. The functionalized polyolefin copolymer may be a functionalized ethylene copolymer. Alternatively, the functionalized ethylene copolymer may be a direct copolymer of ethylene with one or more functionalizing comonomers. Preferred direct copolymers include, without limitation, copolymers of ethylene with one or more functionalizing comonomers selected from the group consisting of a,b- unsaturated dicarboxylic acids, such as maleic acid, fumaric acid, itaconic acid, crotonic acid, and derivatives of the a,b- unsaturated dicarboxylic acids, such as anhydrides, monoesters and diesters, and carboxylate salts of the dicarboxylic acids and monoesters. Alternatively, the derivative may be selected from the group consisting of anhydrides, alkyl monoesters and alkyl diesters. Alternatively, the derivatives may be independently selected from esters of branched or unbranched alkyl groups comprising from 1 to 4 carbon atoms. Alternatively, the a,b - unsaturated dicarboxylic acid may be maleic acid. Alternatively, the functionalizing comonomer may be maleic anhydride. The direct copolymer may contain copolymerized residues of the functionalizing comonomer(s) in an amount of from 0.01 % to 10%, alternatively 0.1 % to 10%, alternatively 0.1 % to 5%, and alternatively 0.3% to 3%, based on the total weight of the direct copolymer.

[0095] The direct copolymers may further comprise one or more additional comonomers selected from the group consisting of alkyl (meth)acrylates, glycidyl (meth)acrylate, ethyl acetate, and vinyl acetate. Suitable alkyl groups are branched or unbranched and comprise from 1 to 4 carbon atoms. Also preferably, the direct copolymer comprises copolymerized residues of the additional comonomer(s) in a finite amount of up to 40%, alternatively 5% to 30%, based on the total weight of the direct copolymer.

[0096] The amount of copolymerized ethylene in the direct copolymer is complementary to the amount of copolymerized functionalizing comonomer(s) and other comonomer(s), if present, so that the sum of the weight percentages of the comonomers in the direct copolymer is 100%.

[0097] The direct copolymer may have a melt flow rate (MFR) of 1 to 1000 g/10 min, alternatively from 1 to 500 g/10 min, and alternatively from 1 to 20 g/10 min, as determined in accordance with ASTM Method No. D1238-13 (version in effect in September, 2018) at 190 e C and 2.16 kg.

[0098] Specific examples of suitable direct copolymers include, without limitation, copolymers of 5% to 30% of an alkyl acrylate, 0.1% to 5% of maleic anhydride, and a complementary amount of ethylene, based on the total weight of the direct copolymer.

[0099] Suitable direct copolymers may be synthesized by random copolymerization of ethylene with the functionalizing comonomer(s) and other comonomer(s), if present, in a high-pressure free radical process, generally an autoclave process. For example, ethylene/monoalkyl maleate copolymers can be obtained using a suitable high-pressure process described U.S. Pat. Nos. 4,351 ,931 . In addition, suitable direct copolymers are commercially available from Arkema, Inc. of King of Prussia, PA, under the tradename Lotader™ terpolymers and functional polymers such as Plexar™ from Lyondell Basell.

[00100] Suitable graft copolymers, suitable polyolefin bases, suitable grafting monomers, and suitable methods for producing the graft copolymers are described in U.S. Patent Nos. 5,346,963; 6,545,091 ; and 5,053,457, for example.

[00101] Briefly, however, suitable polyolefin bases for the graft copolymer include, without limitation, polyethylene homopolymers and copolymers with alpha-olefins, copolymers of ethylene and vinyl acetate, and copolymers of ethylene and one or more alkyl (meth)acrylates. The alkyl groups may be branched or unbranched. The alkyl groups may comprise from 1 to 4 carbon atoms.

[00102] When the polyolefin base is an ethylene alkyl (meth)acrylate copolymer, it is typically synthesized in a multi-zone or“tubular” reactor process, as described above with respect to the preferred copolymers of ethylene and an alkyl (meth)acrylate.

[00103] When the polyolefin base is a polyethylene homopolymer or a copolymer of ethylene with one of more alpha-olefins, the polyolefin base is preferably linear or substantially linear. The term“substantially linear” as used herein with respect to the polyolefin base refers to a polymer backbone that is substituted with from 0.01 to 3 long chain branches per 1000 carbons. When the polyolefin base is a polyethylene homopolymer or a copolymer of ethylene with one of more alpha-olefins, the polyolefin base may be linear or substantially linear. The long chain branches have the same comonomer distribution as the polymer backbone, and can have the same length as the length of the polymer backbone. The length of a long chain branch is longer than the carbon length of a short chain branch, the short chain branch being formed from the incorporation of the a-olefin comonomer into the polymer backbone.

[00104] In contrast, the term“linear” as used herein with respect to the polyolefin base refers to a polymer backbone that lacks measurable or demonstrable long chain branches, i.e., it is substituted with fewer than 0.01 long chain branches per 1000 carbons.

[00105] The extent of long chain branching can be determined by using carbon-13 nuclear magnetic resonance (13C-NMR) spectroscopy and can be quantified using the method of Randall (Rev. Macromol. Chem. Phys., C29 (2 &3), 1989, p. 285-297).

[00106] The polyolefin base may have a melt flow rate (MFR) of 1 to 1000 g/10 min, alternatively 1 to 500 g/10 min, or alternatively 1 to 20 g/10 min, as determined in accordance with ASTM method D1238 (version in effect in September, 2018) at 190 e C and 2.16 kg.

[00107] Alternatively, the polyolefin base may have a density from 0.855 g/cm^ to 0.960 g/cm3, alternatively 0.930 g/cm^ to 0.950 g/cm^, as measured according to ASTM Method No. D792-91 (version in effect in September, 2018). Alternative density ranges are from

0.858 g/crri3 to 0.935 g/cm^, alternatively 0.860 g/cm^ to 0.910 g/cm^, and alternatively 0.880 g/crri3 to 0.900 g/cm^. Other alternative ranges may be from 0.930 g/cm^ to 0.960 g/cm3, when the polyolefin base is a copolymer of ethylene and an alkyl acrylate; from 0.90 g/crri3 to 0.960 g/cm^, when the polyolefin base is a polyethylene; and from 0.860 to 0.910 g/cm3, when the polyolefin base is a plastomer, that is, a copolymer of ethylene and alpha olefins having a molecular weight between 5,000 and 50,000 Daltons as reported by the manufacturer.

[00108] Suitable grafting monomers include, without limitation, ethylenically unsaturated carboxylic acids. Preferred grafting monomers include, without limitation, acrylic acid, methacrylic acid, fumaric acid, maleic acid, nadic acid (5-norbornene-2,3-dicarboxylic acid or, more rigorously, bicyclo[2.2.1 ]hept-5-ene-2,3-dicarboxylic acid), citraconic acid, and itaconic acid. Also suitable are derivatives of the ethylenically unsaturated carboxylic acids, such as for example anhydrides; metal salts; esters, including monoesters and diesters; amides; imides; and the like. Alternatively, the grafting monomer may be an acid anhydride. Alternatively, grafting monomer may be selected from the group consisting of maleic acid and maleic anhydride; and alternatively maleic anhydride. [00109] The graft copolymer may comprise a finite amount up to 10%, alternatively up to 5%, or alternatively 1 % to 4%, based on the total weight of the graft copolymer, of the grafted monomer. The weight percentage of the polyolefin base is complementary to the amount of grafted monomer, so that the sum of the weight percentages of the polyolefin base and the grafted monomer in the graft copolymer is 100%.

[00110] Suitable melt flow rates for the graft copolymer are as set forth above with respect to the polyolefin base and are measured as set forth above with respect to the polyolefin base.

[00111] Polyethylene and ethylene copolymers may be synthesized and functionalized by any suitable process known in the art. For example, graft copolymers produced from polyethylene and linear and substantially linear ethylene alpha-olefin copolymers may be produced as described in U.S. Patent Nos. 5,346,963 and 6,545,091 . Graft copolymers produced from copolymers of ethylene with vinyl acetate or alkyl (meth)acrylates are described in U.S. Patent No. 5,053,457, issued to l-Hwa Lee, and references cited therein, including U.S. Patent Nos. 4,861 ,677; 4,861 ,676; 4,670,349; 4,358,557; 3,932,332; 4,576,995; and Japanese Patent Application Nos. 59055743; 54057582 (reported as Derwent Abstract No. 46260B/25); and 58203043 (reported as Derwent Abstract No. 84- 008480/02).

[00112] In specific embodiments of the method for making the solid carrier component, the (B) polymer and optionally other components, e.g. the (D) compatibilizer, if utilized, is disposed in a first zone of the extruder, which is heated at +/-30 °C within the melting point temperature of the (B) polymer. The (C) organopolysiloxane is disposed in a second zone of the extruder, which is heated at 10 °C to 90 °C above the melting point temperature of the (B) polymer. The (A) filler, when present, is disposed of in either the first, second, or subsequent zones of the extruder. As noted above, the temperature utilized is typically less than a degradation temperature of the components of the composition. In certain embodiments, the mixture is stripped to remove any air, moisture or byproducts prior to pressurization and forming in the die of the extruder. The vacuum, pressurization, and forming zones may also be heated, and the temperatures utilized by the extruder, including the temperature of any zone and the die, does not exceed a degradation temperature of the (B) polymer or (A) filler. The degradation temperature of the (B) polymer and (A) filler is contingent on the selection thereof, as understood by one of skill in the art. The resulting extruded strand may be comminuted by any convenient means to form the solid carrier component comprising the (C) organopolysiloxane and at least one other component.

[00113] In specific embodiments, the solid carrier component comprises from 1 to 70, alternatively from 5 to 50, alternatively from 5 to 30, alternatively from 5 to 25, alternatively from 5 to 20, alternatively from 5 to 15, alternatively from 10 to 20, wt.% of the (C) organopolysiloxane based on the total weight of the solid carrier component. In these or other embodiments, the solid carrier component comprises the (B) polymer in an amount of from 0 to 90, alternatively 5 to 90, alternatively 10 to 90, alternatively 20 to 90, alternatively 30 to 90, alternatively 50 to 90, alternatively 60 to 90, alternatively 70 to 90, alternatively 5 to 60, alternatively 5 to 50, alternatively 5 to 40, wt.% based on the total weight of the solid carrier component. In these or other embodiments, the solid carrier component comprises the (D) compatibilizer in an amount of from 0 to 95, alternatively 0 to 50, alternatively 5 to 50, alternatively 5 to 30, alternatively 5 to 25, alternatively 5 to 20, alternatively 5 to 15, alternatively 10 to 20, alternatively 1 to 95, alternatively 5 to 95, alternatively 10 to 90, wt.% based on the total weight of the solid carrier component. In these or other embodiments, the solid carrier component comprises the (A) filler in an amount of from 0 to 75, alternatively from 0.5 to 5, alternatively from 0.5 to 40, alternatively from 0.5 to 25, alternatively from 0.5 to 20, alternatively from 0.5 to 15, alternatively from 0.5 to 10, alternatively from 0.5 to 5, alternatively from 0.5 to 2, alternatively from 1 to 50, alternatively from 1 to 40, alternatively from 1 to 25, alternatively from 1 to 20, alternatively from 1 to 15, alternatively from 1 to 10, alternatively from 1 to 5, alternatively form 1 to 2, wt.% based on the total weight of the solid carrier component.

[00114] In certain embodiments, in addition to components (A) filler, (B) polymer, and the (C) organopolysiloxane, the composition for preparing the polymer composite article as described above further comprises one or more additives selected from (D) a compatibilizer, (E) a colorant, (F) a blowing agent, (G) a UV stabilizer, (H) an antioxidant, (I) a process aid, (J) a preservative, (K) a biocide, (L) a flame retardant, (M) an impact modifier, (N) a heat stabilizer, and (O) a lubricant. Each additive, if utilized, may be present in the composition in an amount of from greater than 0 to 30 weight percent based on the total weight of the composition. The composition may also include other optional additives, as known in the art. Such additives are described, for example, in Walker, Benjamin M., and Charles P. Rader, eds. Handbook of thermoplastic elastomers. New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold, 1979; Murphy, John, ed. Additives for plastics handbook. Elsevier, 2001 ; which are incorporated by reference herein. In the event the (C) organopolysiloxane is present in a solid carrier component, one or more of these additives may be included in the solid carrier component.

[00115] When selecting components for the composition for preparing the polymer composite article described above, there may be overlap between types of components because certain components described herein may have more than one function. For example, certain polysaccharides may be useful as fillers in one composite and as polymer in a different composite. Certain functional polymers may be useful as component (D). Certain particulates may be useful as fillers and as pigments, and even as flame retardants, e.g., carbon black. When selecting components for the composition, the components selected for each embodiment are distinct from one another.

[00116] As used herein, the (D) compatibilizer may be any compound or component which modifies, alternatively improves, the wetting of the (B) polymer (e.g., a polyvinyl based polymer) on the (A) filler. Examples of such compatibilizers include titanium alcoholates, esters of phosphoric, phosphorous, phosphonic, and silicic acids, metallic salts and esters of aliphatic, aromatic, and cycloaliphatic acids, ethylene/acrylic or methacrylic acids, ethylene/esters of acrylic or methacrylic acid, ethylene/vinyl acetate resins, styrene/maleic anhydride resins or esters thereof, acrylonitrilebutadiene styrene resins, methacrylate/butadiene styrene resins (MBS), styrene acrylonitrile resins (SAN), and butadieneacrylonitrile copolymers. Alternatively or in addition, the (D) compatibilizer may comprise a silane, e.g. a hydrocarbonoxysilane such as an alkoxysilane, a combination of an alkoxysilane and a hydroxy-functional polyorganosiloxane, an aminofunctional silane, or a combination thereof. The silane may include any functional group, which may be an adhesion-promoting group, such as amino, epoxy, mercapto and/or acrylate groups. Combinations of functional groups may be utilized, e.g. the (D) compatibilizer may comprise an epoxy-functional alkoxysilane. Suitable epoxy-functional organic groups are exemplified by 3-glycidoxypropyl and (epoxycyclohexyl)ethyl. Unsaturated organic groups are exemplified by 3-methacryloxypropyl, 3-acryloxypropyl, and unsaturated monovalent hydrocarbon groups such as vinyl, allyl, hexenyl, undecylenyl. Examples of suitable epoxy functional alkoxysilanes include 3-glycidoxypropyltrim ethoxysilane, 3- glycidoxypropyltriethoxysilane, (epoxycyclohexyl)ethyldimethoxysilane,

(epoxycyclohexyl)ethyldiethoxysilane and combinations thereof. Examples of suitable unsaturated alkoxysilanes include vinyltrimethoxysilane, allyltrimethoxysilane, allyltriethoxysilane, hexenyltrimethoxysilane, undecylenyltrimethoxysilane, 3- methacryloyloxypropyl trimethoxysilane, 3-methacryloyloxypropyl triethoxysilane, 3- acryloyloxypropyl trimethoxysilane, 3-acryloyloxypropyl triethoxysilane, and combinations thereof. Aminofunctional silanes, such as an aminofunctional alkoxysilanes, may have various amino groups, as understood in the art.

[00117] Other examples of compatibilizers include modified polyethylene and modified polypropylene, which are obtained by modifying polyethylene and polypropylene, respectively, using a reactive group, including polar monomers such as maleic anhydride or esters, acrylic or methacrylic acid or esters, vinylacetate, acrylonitrile, and styrene. Additional specific examples of suitable (D) compatibilizers include polyethylene as described, but polyethylene that is grafted with a silane or maleic anhydride, such as silane grafted polyethylene or maleic anhydride grafted polyethylene or maleic anhydride grafted polypropylene. Maleic anhydride grafted polyethylene may be referred to as maleated polyethylene. Examples of suitable (D) compatibilizers are disclosed, for example, in PCT publications W02007/071732 and WO2015/076970, and U.S. Patent 8,722,773 at col. 6, the disclosures of which are incorporated by reference herein in their entireties. Alternatively, the (D) compatibilizer may comprise maleic anhydride as a discrete component, i.e., ungrafted to polyethylene. If utilized, the composition typically comprises the (D) compatibilizer in an amount of from greater than 0 to 10 weight percent based on the total weight of the composition. However, various amounts of the (D) compatibilizer may be utilized, even outside of this range, depending on its selection.

[00118] The (E) colorant is not limited and may be, for example, a pigment, a dye, and the like. Such (E) colorants can be organic or inorganic, synthetic or natural. Non-limiting examples of suitable pigments include cadmium yellow, cadmium red, cadmium green, cadmium orange, carbon black (including vine black, lamp black), ivory black (bone char), chrome yellow, chrome green, cobalt violet, cobalt blue, cerulean blue, aureolin (cobalt yellow), Azurite, Han purple, Han blue, Egyptian blue, Malachite, Paris green, Phthalocyanine Blue BN, Phthalocyanine Green G, verdigris, viridian, sanguine, caput mortuum, oxide red, red ochre, Venetian red, Prussian blue, yellow ochre, raw sienna, burnt sienna, raw umber, burnt umber, Cremnitz white, Naples yellow, vermilion titanium yellow, titanium beige, titanium white, titanium black, ultramarine, ultramarine green shade, zinc white, zinc ferrite, alizarin (synthesized or natural), alizarin crimson (synthesized or natural), gamboge, cochineal red, rose madder, indigo, Indian yellow, Tyrian purple, quinacridone, magenta, phthalo green, phthalo blue, pigment red 170, or any combinations thereof. Such (E) colorants are typically selected and utilized based on desired aesthetics of the polymer composite article.

[00119] If utilized, the (F) blowing agent can be a physical blowing agent, a chemical blowing agent, or combination of physical and chemical blowing agents. Specific examples of physical blowing agents include various gasses and volatile liquids including, but not limited to, hydrocarbons and liquid carbon dioxide. For example, physical blowing agents include hydrocarbons having from 1 to 5, alternatively from 3 to 5, carbon atoms, including propane, butane, isobutane, or combinations thereof; hydrofluorocarbons having from 1 to 5 carbon atoms, e.g. 1 ,1 ,1 ,2-tetrafluoroethane or 1 ,1 -difluoroethane; dimethyl ether; etc. Specific examples of chemical blowing agents include organic or inorganic compounds that release gas upon reaction or decomposition, e.g. upon a reaction or decomposition at a specific temperature. The (F) blowing agent may be utilized to prepare closed-cell and/or open-celled structures. The (F) blowing agent may alternatively be referred to as a foaming agent. [00120] If utilized, the (G) UV stabilizer may be any UV stabilizer known in the art. Specific examples thereof include phenol, 2-(2H-benzotriazol-2-yl)-6-dodecyl-4-methyl-, branched and linear (TINUVIN™ 571 ). Additional examples of suitable (G) UV stabilizers include bis(l,2,2,6,6-pentamethyl-4-piperidyl) sebacate; methyl l,2,2,6,6-pentamethyl-4- piperidyl/sebacate; and a combination thereof (TINUVIN™ 272). These and other TINUVIN™ additives, such as TINUVIN™ 765 are commercially available from BASF. Other UV and light stabilizers are commercially available, and are exemplified by LowLite from Chemtura, OnCap from PolyOne, and Light Stabilizer 210 from E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Company of Delaware, U.S.A. An example of an oligomeric antioxidant stabilizer (specifically, hindered amine light stabilizer (HALS)) is BASF TINUVIN™ 622, which is a dimethylester of butanedioic acid copolymerized with 4-hydroxy-2,2,6,6-tetramethyl-l- piperidine ethanol.

[00121 ] If utilized, the (H) antioxidant may be any antioxidant known in the art. Specific examples thereof include phenolic antioxidants and combinations of phenolic antioxidants with stabilizers. Phenolic antioxidants include fully sterically hindered phenols and partially hindered phenols; and sterically hindered amines such as tetramethyl-piperidine derivatives. Suitable phenolic antioxidants include vitamin E and IRGANOX™ 1010 from BASF. IRGANOX™ 1010 comprises pentaerythritol tetrakis(3-(3,5-di-t-butyl-4- hydroxyphenyl)propionate). Additional examples of antioxidants are acetyl cysteine, arbutin, ascorbic acid, ascorbic acid polypeptide, ascorbyl dipalmitate, ascorbyl methylsilanol pectinate, ascorbyl palmitate, ascorbyl stearate, BHA, p-hydroxyanisole, BHT, t-butyl hydroquinone, caffeic acid, Camellia sinensis oil, chitosan ascorbate, chitosan glycolate, chitosan salicylate, chlorogenic acids, cysteine, cysteine HCI, decyl mercaptomethylimidazole, erythorbic acid, diamylhydroquinone, di-t-butylhydroquinone, dicetyl thiodipropionate, dicyclopentadiene/t-butylcresol copolymer, digalloyl trioleate, dilauryl thiodipropionate, dimyristyl thiodipropionate, dioleyl tocopheryl methylsilanol, isoquercitrin, diosmine, disodium ascorbyl sulfate, disodium rutinyl disulfate, distearyl thiodipropionate, ditridecyl thiodipropionate, dodecyl gallate, ethyl ferulate, ferulic acid, hydroquinone, hydroxylamine HCI, hydroxylamine sulfate, isooctyl thioglycolate, kojic acid, madecassicoside, magnesium ascorbate, magnesium ascorbyl phosphate, melatonin, methoxy-PEG-7 rutinyl succinate, methylene di-t-butylcresol, methylsilanol ascorbate, nordihydroguaiaretic acid, octyl gallate, phenylthioglycolic acid, phloroglucinol, potassium ascorbyl tocopheryl phosphate, thiodiglycolamide, potassium sulfite, propyl gallate, rosmarinic acid, rutin, sodium ascorbate, sodium ascorbyl/cholesteryl phosphate, sodium bisulfite, sodium erythorbate, sodium metabisulfide, sodium sulfite, sodium thioglycolate, sorbityl furfural, tea tree (Melaleuca aftemifolia) oil, tocopheryl acetate, tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate, tetrahydrodiferuloylmethane, tocopheryl linoleate/oleate, thiodiglycol, tocopheryl succinate, thiodiglycolic acid, thioglycolic acid, thiolactic acid, thiosalicylic acid, thiotaurine, retinol, tocophereth-5, tocophereth-10, tocophereth-12, tocophereth-18, tocophereth-50, tocopherol, tocophersolan, tocopheryl linoleate, tocopheryl nicotinate, tocoquinone, o-tolyl biguanide, tris(nonylphenyl) phosphite, ubiquinone, zinc dibutyldithiocarbamate, and mixtures thereof.

[00122] If utilized, the (I) process aid is different from the (C) organopolysiloxane, although the (I) process aid may be any of the organopolysiloxanes described above for the (C) organopolysiloxane. The (I) process aid may also comprise a non-functional organopolysiloxane, e.g. polydimethylsiloxane, which may contain 0 to less than 50 ppm OH based on weight of the non-functional organopolysiloxane, alternatively a non-detectable amount of OH as measured by FTIR according to the procedure described in Elmer D. Lipp Appl. Spectrosc. 1991 , 45, 477. The (I) process aid may be an internal process aid, an external process aid, or a combination thereof. The (I) process aid may be a solid, e.g. a powdered solid, a liquid, such as an oil, etc. Specific examples of (I) process aids include ethylene bis-stearamide (EBS), hydrocarbon waxes, fatty acids and esters thereof, chlorinated paraffin waxes, metal stearates, etc. The (C) organopolysiloxane may be combined with the (I) process aid, if the (I) process aid is utilized, such that the (C) organopolysiloxane and the (I) process aid are utilized in concert. If combined, the (I) process aid may also serve as a carrier vehicle for the (C) organopolysiloxane, depending upon a selection of each and the relative amounts thereof.

[00123] Examples of (J) preservatives include paraben derivatives, hydantoin derivatives, chlorhexidine and its derivatives, imidazolidinyl urea, phenoxyethanol, silver derivatives, salicylate derivatives, triclosan, ciclopirox olamine, hexamidine, oxyquinoline and its derivatives, PVP-iodine, zinc salts and derivatives such as zinc pyrithione, and mixtures thereof.

[00124] The (K) biocide may be exemplified by (K1 ) a fungicide, (K2) an herbicide, (K3) a pesticide, (K4) an antimicrobial agent, or a combination thereof.

[00125] Specific examples of (K1 ) fungicides include N-substituted benzimidazole carbamate, benzimidazolyl carbamate such as methyl 2-benzimidazolylcarbamate, ethyl 2- benzimidazolylcarbamate, isopropyl 2-benzimidazolylcarbamate, methyl N-{2-[l-(N,N- dimethylcarbamoyl)benzimidazolyl]}carbamate, methyl N-{2-[l-(N,N-dimethylcarbamoyl)-6- methylbenzimidazolyl]}carbamate, methyl N-{2-[l-(N,N-dimethylcarbamoyl)-5- methylbenzimidazolyl]}carbamate, methyl N-{2-[l-(N- methylcarbamoyl)benzimidazolyl]}carbamate, methyl N-{2-[l-(N-methylcarbamoyl)-6- methylbenzimidazolyl]}carbamate, methyl N-{2-[l-(N-methylcarbamoyl)-5- methylbenzimidazolyl]}carbamate, ethyl N-{2-[l-(N,N- dimethylcarbamoyl)benzimidazolyl]}carbamate, ethyl N-{2-[2-(N- methylcarbamoyl)benzimidazolyl]}carbamate, ethyl N-{2-[l-(N,N-dimethylcarbamoyl)-6- methylbenzimidazolyl]}carbamate, ethyl N-{2-[l-(N-methylcarbamoyl)-6- methylbenzimidazolyl]}carbamate, isopropyl N-{2-[l-(N,N- dimethylcarbamoyl)benzimidazolyl]}carbamate, isopropyl N-{2-[l-(N- methylcarbamoyl)benzimidazolyl]}carbamate, methyl N-{2-[l-(N-prop ylcarbamoyl)benzimidazolyl]}carbamate, methyl N-{2-[l-(N- butylcarbamoyl)benzimidazolyl]}carbamate, methoxyethyl N-{2-[l-(N-prop ylcarbamoyl)benzimidazolyl]}carbamate, methoxyethyl N-{2-[l-(N- butylcarbamoyl)benzimidazolyl]}carbamate, ethoxyethyl N-{2-[l-(N-prop ylcarbamoyl)benzimidazolyl]}carbamate, ethoxyethyl N-{2-[l-(N- butylcarbamoyl)benzimidazolyl]}carbamate, methyl N-{1 -(N,N- dimethylcarbamoyloxy)benzimidazolyl]}carbamate, methyl N-{2-[N- methylcarbamoyloxy)benzimidazolyl]}carbamate, methyl N-{2-[l-(N- butylcarbamoyloxy)benzoimidazolyl]}carbamate, ethoxyethyl N-{2-[l-(N-prop ylcarbamoyl)benzimidazolyl]}carbamate, ethoxyethyl N-{2-[l-(N- butylcarbamoyloxy)benzoimidazolyl]}carbamate, methyl N-{2 -[l-(N,N-dimethylcarbamoyl)-6- chlorobenzimidazolyl]}carbamate, and methyl N-{2-[l-(N,N-dimethylcarbamoyl)-6- nitrobenzimidazolyl]}carbamate; 10, 10'-oxybisphenoxarsine (which has trade name Vinyzene, OB PA), di-iodomethyl-para-tolylsulfone, benzothiophene-2- cyclohexylcarboxamide-S,S-dioxide, N-(fluordichloridemethylthio)phthalimide (which has trade names Fluor-Folper, and Preventol A3); methyl-benzimideazol-2-ylcarbamate (which has trade names Carbendazim, and Preventol BCM), zinc -bis (2-pyridylthio-l -oxide) (zinc pyrithion) 2-(4-thiazolyl)-benzimidazol, N-phenyl-iodpropargylcarbamate, N-octyl-4- isothiazolin-3-on, 4,5-dichloride-2-n-octyl-4-isothiazolin-3-on, N-butyl-l,2-benzisothiazolin-3- on and/or triazolyl-compounds, such as tebuconazol in combination with zeolites containing silver.

[00126] Specific examples of (K2) herbicides include amide herbicides such as allidochlor N,N-diallyl-2-chloroacetamide; CDEA 2-chloro-N,N-diethylacetamide; etnipromid (RS)-2-[5- (2,4-dichlorophenoxy)-2-nitrophenoxy]-N-ethylpropionamide; anilide herbicides such as cisanilide cis-2,5-dimethylpyrrolidine-l-carboxanilide; flufenacet 4'-fluoro-N-isopropyl-2-[5- (trifluoromethyl)-l,3,4-thiadiazol-2-yloxyjacetanilide; naproanilide (RS)-a-2- naphthoxypropionanilide; arylalanine herbicides such as benzoylprop N-benzoyl-N-(3,4- dichlorophenyl)-DL-alanine; flamprop-M N-benzoyl-N-(3-chloro-4-fluorophenyl)-D-alanine; chloroacetanilide herbicides such as butachlor N-butoxymethyl-2-chloro-2',6'- diethylacetanilide; metazachlor 2-chloro-N-(pyrazol-1 -ylmethyl)acet-2',6'-xylidide; prynachlor (RS)-2-chloro-N-(l-methylprop-2-ynyl)acetanilide; sulphonanilide herbicides such as cloransulam 3-chloro-2-(5-ethoxy-7-fluoro[l,2,4]triazolo[l,5-a]pyrimidin -2- ylsulphonamido)benzoic acid; metosulam 2 , ,6'-dichloro-5,7-dimethoxy-3'- methyl[l,2,4]triazolo[l,5-a]pyrimidine-2-sulphonanilide; antibiotic herbicides such as bilanafos 4-[hydroxy(methyl)phosphinoyl]-L-homoalanyl-L-alanyl-L-alani ne; benzoic acid herbicides such as chloramben 3-amino-2,5-dichlorobenzoic acid; 2,3,6-TBA 2,3,6-trichlorobenzoic acid; pyrimidinyloxybenzoic acid herbicides such as bispyribac 2,6-bis(4,6- dimethoxypyrimidin-2-yloxy)benzoic acid; pyrimidinylthiobenzoic acid herbicides such as pyrithiobac 2-chloro-6-(4,6-dimethoxypyrimidin-2-ylthio)benzoic acid; phthalic acid herbicides such as chlorthal tetrachloroterephthalic acid; picolinic acid herbicides such as aminopyralid 4-amino-3,6-dichloropyridine-2-carboxylic acid; quinolinecarboxylic acid herbicides such as quinclorac 3,7-dichloroquinoline-8-carboxylic acid; arsenical herbicides such as CMA calcium bis(hydrogen methylarsonate); MAMA ammonium hydrogen methylarsonate; sodium arsenite; benzoylcyclohexanedione herbicides such as mesotrione 2-(4-mesyl-2-nitrobenzoyl)cyclohexane-l,3-dione; benzofuranyl alkylsulphonate herbicides such as benfuresate 2,3-dihydro-3,3-dimethylbenzofuran-5-yl ethanesulphonate; carbamate herbicides such as carboxazole methyl 5-ie/t-butyl-l,2-oxazol-3-ylcarbamate; fenasulam methyl 4-[2-(4-chloro-otolyloxy)acetamido]phenylsulphonylcarbamate; carbanilate herbicides such as BCPC (RS)-sec-butyl 3-chlorocarbanilate; desmedipham ethyl 3- phenylcarbamoyloxyphenylcarbamate; swep methyl 3,4-dichlorocarbanilate; cyclohexene oxime herbicides such as butroxydim (RS)-(EZ)-5-(3-butyryl-2,4,6-trimethylphenyl)-2-(l- ethoxyiminopropyl)-3-hydroxycyclohex-2-en-l-one; tepraloxydim (RS)-(EZ)-2-{l-[(2E)-3- chloroallyloxyimino]propyl}-3-hydroxy-5-perhydropyran-4-ylcy clohex-2-en-l-one;

cyclopropylisoxazole herbicides such as isoxachlortole 4-chloro-2-mesylphenyl 5- cyclopropyl-l,2-oxazol-4-yl ketone; dicarboximide herbicides such as flumezin 2-methyl-4- (a,a,a-trifluoro-m-tolyl)-1 ,2,4-oxadiazinane-3,5-dione; dinitroaniline herbicides such as ethalfluralin N-ethyl-a,a,a-trifluoro-N-(2-methylallyl)-2,6-dinitro-p-tolu idine; prodiamine 5- dipropylamino-a,a,a-trifluoro-4,6-dinitro-o-toluidine; dinitrophenol herbicides such as dinoprop 4,6-dinitro-o-cymen-3-ol; etinofen a-ethoxy-4,6-dinitro-o-cresol; diphenyl ether herbicides such as ethoxyfen 0-[2-chloro-5-(2-chloro-a,a,a-trifluoro-p-tolyloxy)benzoyl]- L- lactic acid; nitrophenyl ether herbicides such as aclonifen 2-chloro-6-nitro-3-phenoxyaniline; nitrofen 2,4-dichlorophenyl 4-nitrophenyl ether; dithiocarbamate herbicides such as dazomet3,5-dimethyl-l,3,5-thiadiazinane-2-thione; halogenated aliphatic herbicides such as dalapon 2,2-dichloropropionic acid; chloroacetic acid; imidazolinone herbicides such as imazapyr (RS)-2-(4-isopropyl-4-methyl-5-oxo-2-imidazolin-2-yl)nicotin ic acid; inorganic herbicides such as disodium tetraborate decahydrate; sodium azide; nitrile herbicides such as chloroxynil 3,5-dichloro-4-hydroxybenzonitrile; ioxynil 4-hydroxy-3,5-di-iodobenzonitrile; organophosphorus herbicides such as anilofos S-4-chloro-N-isopropylcarbaniloylmethyl 0,0- dimethyl phosphorodithioate; glufosinate 4-[hydroxy(methyl)phosphinoyl]-DL-homoalanine; phenoxy herbicides such as clomeprop (RS)-2-(2,4-dichloro-m-tolyloxy)propionanilide; fenteracol 2-(2,4,5-trichlorophenoxy)ethanol; phenoxyacetic herbicides such as MCPA (4- chloro-2-methylphenoxy)acetic acid; phenoxybutyric herbicides such as MCPB 4-(4-chloro- o-tolyloxy)butyric acid; phenoxypropionic herbicides such as fenoprop (RS)-2-(2,4,5- trichlorophenoxy)propionic acid; aryloxyphenoxypropionic herbicides such as isoxapyrifop (RiS')-2-[2-[4-(3,5-dichloro-2-pyridyloxy)phenoxy]propionyl] isoxazolidine; phenylenediamine herbicides such as dinitramine Nl,Nl-diethyl-2,6-dinitro-4-trifluoromethyl-m- phenylenediamine, pyrazolyloxyacetophenone herbicides such as pyrazoxyfen 2-[4-(2,4- dichlorobenzoyl)-l,3-dimethylpyrazol-5-yloxy]acetophenone; pyrazolylphenyl herbicides such as pyraflufen 2-chloro-5-(4-chloro-5-difluoromethoxy-l-methylpyrazol-3-yl) -4- fluorophenoxyacetic acid; pyridazine herbicides such as pyridafol 6-chloro-3- phenylpyridazin-4-ol; pyridazinone herbicides such as chloridazon 5-amino-4-chloro-2- phenylpyridazin-3(2H)-one; oxapyrazon 5-bromo-l,6-dihydro-6-oxo-l-phenylpyridazin-4- yloxamic acid; pyridine herbicides such as fluroxypyr 4-amino-3,5-dichloro-6-fluoro-2- pyridyloxyacetic acid; thiazopyr methyl 2-difluoromethyl-5-(4,5-dihydro-l,3-thiazol-2-yl)-4- isobutyl-6-trifluoromethylnicotinate; pyrimidinediamine herbicides such as iprymidam 6- chloro-N4-isopropylpyrimidine-24-diamine; quaternary ammonium herbicides such as diethamquat 1 ,1’-bis(diethylcarbamoylmethyl)-4,4'-bipyridinium; paraquat I, -dimethyl-4, 4'- bipyridinium; thiocarbamate herbicides such as cycloate S-ethyl cyclohexyl(ethyl)thiocarbamate; tiocarbazil S-benzyl di-sec-butylthiocarbamate; thiocarbonate herbicides such as EXD O,O-diethyl dithiobis(thioformate); thiourea herbicides such as methiuron l,l-dimethyl-3-m-tolyl-2-thiourea; triazine herbicides such as triaziflam (R5')-N-[2-(3,5-dimethylphenoxy)-l-methylethyl]-6-(l-fluoro- l-methylethyl)-l,3,5-triazine-2,4- diamine; chlorotriazine herbicides such as cyprazine 6-chloro-N 2 -cyclopropyl-N 4 -isopropyl- 1 -3, 5-triazine-2, 4-diamine; propazine 6-chloro-N 2 ,N 4 -diisopropyl-l, 3, 5-triazine-2, 4-diamine; methoxytriazine herbicides such as prometon N 2 ,N 4 -di-isopropyl-6-methoxy-l,3,5-triazine- 2, 4-diamine; methylthiotriazine herbicides such as cyanatryn 2-(4-ethylamino-6-methylthio- 1 ,3,5-triazin-2-ylamino)-2-methylpropionitrile; triazinone herbicides such as hexazinone 3- cyclohexyl-6-dimethylamino-l-methyl-l,3,5-triazine-2,4(IH,3H )-dione; triazole herbicides such as epronaz N-ethyl-N-propyl-3-propylsulphonyl-IH-l,2,4-triazole-l-carbo xamide; triazolone herbicides such as carfentrazone (RS)-2-chloro-3-{2-chloro-5-[4-(difluoromethyl)-4,5- dihydro-3-methyl-5-oxo-IH-l,2,4-triazol-l-yl]-4-fluorophenyl }propionic acid; triazolopyrimidine herbicides such as florasulam 2 , ,6 , ,8-trifluoro-5-methoxy[l,2,4]triazolo[l,5-c]pyrimidine -2- sulphonanilide; uracil herbicides such as flupropacil isopropyl 2-chloro-5-(l,2,3,6-tetrahydro- 3-methyl-2,6-dioxo-4-trifluoromethylpyrimidin-l-yl)benzoate; urea herbicides such as cycluron 3-cyclo-octyl-l,l-dimethylurea; monisouron l-(5-ieri-butyl-l,2-oxazol-3-yl)-3- methylurea; phenylurea herbicides such as chloroxuron 3-[4-(4-chlorophenoxy)phenyl]-l,l- dimethylurea; siduron l-(2-methylcyclohexyl)-3-phenylurea; pyrimidinylsulphonylurea herbicides such as flazasulphuron l-(4,6-dimethoxypyrimidin-2-yl)-3-(3-trifluoromethyl-2- pyridylsulphonyl)urea; pyrazosulphuron 5-[(4,6-dimethoxypyrimidin-2- ylcarbamoyl)sulphamoyl]-1 -methylpyrazole-4-carboxylic acid; triazinylsulphonylurea herbicides such as thifensulphuron 3-(4-methoxy-6-methyl-l,3,5-triazin-2- ylcarbamoylsulphamoyl)thiophene-2-carboxylic acid; thiadiazolylurea herbicides such as tebuthiuron l-(5-tert-butyl-l,3,4-thiadiazol-2-yl)-l,3-dimethylurea; and/or unclassified herbicides such as chlorfenac (2,3,6-trichlorophenyl)acetic acid; methazole 2-(3,4- dichlorophenyl)-4-methyl-l,2,4-oxadiazolidine-3,5-dione; tritac (RS)-l-(2,3,6- trichlorobenzyloxy)propan-2-ol; 2,4-D, chlorimuron, and fenoxaprop; and combinations thereof.

[00127] Specific examples of (K3) pesticides include atrazine, diazinon, and chlorpyrifos. The (K3) pesticide includes insect repellents such as N,N-diethyl-meta-toluamide and pyrethroids such as pyrethrin.

[00128] Suitable (K4) antimicrobial agents are commercially available, such as BIOSIL™ 5700 Antimicrobial and BIOSIL™ 5772 Antimicrobial, which are commercially available from Dow Silicones Corporation of Midland, Michigan, U.S.A.

[00129] Alternatively, the (K) biocide may comprise a boron containing material, e.g., boric anhydride, borax, or disodium octaborate tetrahydrate; which may function as a pesticide, fungicide, and/or flame retardant.

[00130] Specific examples of suitable (L) flame retardants include carbon black, hydrated aluminum hydroxide, magnesium hydroxide, hydromagnesite and silicates such as wollastonite, platinum and platinum compounds. Alternatively, the (L) flame retardant, if utilized, may be selected from halogen based flame-retardants such as decabromodiphenyloxide, octabromodiphenyl oxide, hexabromocyclododecane, decabromobiphenyl oxide, diphenyoxybenzene, ethylene bis-tetrabromophthalmide, pentabromoethyl benzene, pentabromobenzyl acrylate, tribromophenyl maleic imide, tetrabromobisphenyl A, bis-(tribromophenoxy) ethane, bis-(pentabromophenoxy) ethane, polydibomophenylene oxide, tribromophenylallyl ether, bis-dibromopropyl ether, tetrabromophthalic anhydride, dibromoneopentyl gycol, dibromoethyl dibromocyclohexane, pentabromodiphenyl oxide, tribromostyrene, pentabromochlorocyclohexane, tetrabromoxylene, hexabromocyclododecane, brominated polystyrene, tetradecabromodiphenoxybenzene, trifluoropropene and PVC. Alternatively, the (L) flame retardant, if utilized, may be selected from phosphorus based flame-retardants such as (2,3- dibromopropyl)-phosphate, phosphorus, cyclic phosphates, triaryl phosphate, bis- melaminium pentate, pentaerythritol bicyclic phosphate, dimethyl methyl phosphate, phosphine oxide diol, triphenyl phosphate, tris-(2-chloroethyl) phosphate, phosphate esters such as tricreyl, trixylenyl, isodecyl diphenyl, ethylhexyl diphenyl, phosphate salts of various amines such as ammonium phosphate, trioctyl, tributyl or tris-butoxyethyl phosphate ester. Other suitable (L) flame retardants may include tetraalkyl lead compounds such as tetraethyl lead, iron pentacarbonyl, manganese methyl cyclopentadienyl tricarbonyl, melamine and derivatives such as melamine salts, guanidine, dicyandiamide, ammonium sulphamate, alumina trihydrate, and magnesium hydroxide alumina trihydrate.

[00131 ] Specific examples of suitable (M) impact modifiers include acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS), acrylonitrile styrene acrylate (ASA), methacrylate butadiene styrene (MBS), poly(styrene-butadiene-styrene) (SBS), styrene ethylene butylene styrene (SEBS), poly(styrene-isoprene-styrene) (SIS), maleic anhydride-modified SEBS, acrylic, polyacrylate, chlorinated polyethylene elastomer (CPE), ethylene propylene diene monomer, maleic anhydride-modified EPDM, styrene acrylonitrile-modified EPDM, DMA modified ethylene-acrylate copolymers, ionomers, thermoplastic elastomers and plastomers, modified polyolefins (reactive and/or nonreactive), silicone rubber (e.g. alkyl and/or aryl silicone rubber), and combinations thereof.

[00132] Specific examples of suitable (N) heat stabilizers include, for example: metal-based salts and blends thereof, such as alkaline earth metal salts (e.g. calcium or barium metal salts) in combination with cadmium or zinc salts (mixed-metal stabilizers); rare earth metal salts, such as those based on lanthanum; basic and neutral lead salts; and mixtures thereof. The (N) heat stabilizer can also be selected from one or more of metal-free, organic compounds (e.g., urea or thiourea); organotin compounds such as mercaptides, tin carboxylates, and octyl tin maleates; and mixtures thereof. Other examples of suitable (N) heat stabilizers include co-stabilizers, such as epoxidized esters; melamine derivatives; and mixtures thereof.

[00133] Specific examples of suitable (O) lubricants include, for example: natural paraffins; synthetic paraffin waxes; crosslinked paraffin waxes; low molecular weight polyethylenes and oxidized polyethylene waxes; fatty acids such as stearic acid, hydroxystearic acid, and lauric acid; fatty acid metal salts, such as calcium stearate; aliphatic alcohols such as cetyl alcohol and stearyl alcohol; low alcohol esters of fatty acids such as butyl stearate; higher alcohol esters of higher fatty acids such as glycerol stearate, glycerol (di)oleate, pentaerythritol stearate, cetyl stearylphthalate, and pentaerythritol adipate stearate; hydrogenated castor oil; and mixtures thereof.

[00134] A method for preparing a polymer composite article is also provided. The method comprises preparing the polymer composite article from the composition. In certain embodiments, the method further comprises forming the composition. The composition is formed by combining at least component the (A) filler, the (B) polymer, and the (C) organopolysiloxane, along with any optional components present in the composition. When the (C) organopolysiloxane is in the form of a solid carrier component, the method comprises combining the (A) filler, the (B) polymer, and the solid carrier component comprising the (C) organopolysiloxane.

[00135] The components of the composition may be combined in any order and via any suitable manner. In certain embodiments, for example, when a thermoplastic is used as the (B) polymer, the (B) polymer may be melted prior to, during, and/or after formation of the composition. For example, the (B) polymer may be heated prior to and/or during combining the components such that the (A) filler and the (C) organopolysiloxane are combined with a melted form of the (B) polymer. The (A) filler and the (C) organopolysiloxane may be combined with the melted form of the (B) polymer in any order, e.g. individually, sequentially, together, or simultaneously. Alternatively, however, the (B) polymer may be combined with the (A) filler and the (C) organopolysiloxane prior to heating or melting the (B) polymer such that the (B) polymer is in solid and unmelted or unsoftened form when preparing the composition. Alternatively, the (A) filler and the (C) organopolysiloxane may be combined and heated, then added to the (B) polymer in solid or liquid form when preparing the composition.

[00136] A melting point temperature (or glass transition temperature) of the (B) polymer is typically a function of the (B) polymer utilized. For example, certain species of polymers have different melting point temperatures than other species of polymers. In certain embodiments, the (B) polymer is heated before, during, and/or after formation of the composition to a temperature that is greater than the melting point temperature of the (B) polymer, e.g. 10 to 90, alternatively 10 to 40, °C higher than the melting point temperature of the (B) polymer. This ensures melting rather than mere softening of the (B) polymer. Alternatively, lower temperatures may be utilized in combination with shear or mixing to ensure softening and/or melting of the (B) polymer.

[00137] The (C) organopolysiloxane may be in liquid form or delivered in the form of a pelletized masterbatch, i.e., a solid which is a combination of the (C) organopolysiloxane and one or more other polymeric components. For example, the (B) polymer and the (C) organopolysiloxane may be combined to give a masterbatch, which is subsequently combined with the (A) filler to give the composition. Alternatively, however, more than one masterbatch may be formed, e.g., one masterbatch with a portion of the (B) polymer and the (A) filler, and an additional masterbatch (with a portion of the (B) polymer and the (C) organopolysiloxane may be prepared and combined to give the composition. Alternatively, the solid carrier component may comprise, alternatively consist essentially of, or alternatively consist of, the (A) filler and the (C) organopolysiloxane.

[00138] In certain embodiments, the (A) filler and the (C) organopolysiloxane and at least one other component (e.g., one or more of the additional components described above) may be combined to give a mixture, and the mixture is combined with the (B) polymer (and any other additional components) to give the composition. Combining the (A) filler and the (C) organopolysiloxane may be referred to as surface treating, wetting, or pre-treating the (A) filler, which may be further to or alternatively to surface treating the (A) filler as set forth above. Alternatively, the (A) filler and the (C) organopolysiloxane may be combined by spraying, impregnation, blending or mixing. Combining the (A) filler and the (C) organopolysiloxane may further comprise heating, e.g., to bind the (C) organopolysiloxane to the (A) filler. Optionally, the resulting combination of (A) filler and (C) organopolysiloxane may be compacted before being pelletized or powdered. Combining the (A) filler and the (C) organopolysiloxane may be performed in a separate process or may be integrated into an existing (e.g., extrusion) process for making a polymer composite article in a pre-mixing step. In the pre-mixing step, the components may be blended together before feeding into an extruder, e.g., all or a portion of the (A) filler and the (C) organopolysiloxane (prepared as described above) and (B) the polymer, and one or more additional components, may be mixed in the pre-mixing step and thereafter fed to an extruder.

[00139] The (C) organopolysiloxane may be combined with the (A) filler while disposed or combined with the carrier vehicle or in neat form. For example, the (C) organopolysiloxane in the carrier vehicle may be combined with the (A) filler, and the carrier vehicle may optionally be driven therefrom prior to adding the (A) filler and the (C) organopolysiloxane to the composition such that carrier vehicle is present in an initial mixture, e.g. the solid carrier component, but not in the composition. Alternatively, all or a portion of the carrier vehicle may be present in and driven from the composition when preparing the polymer composite article therewith. In addition, or alternatively still, the (A) filler may be treated with a surface treatment agent other than the (C) organopolysiloxane, in situ and/or prior to incorporation in the solid carrier component.

[00140] In certain embodiments in which the (C) organopolysiloxane is present in the solid carrier component, the solid carrier component comprising the (A) filler and the (C) organopolysiloxane, the solid carrier component can be heated. In certain embodiments the solid carrier component is heated in a vacuum. This can be performed for multiple reasons, such as to promote reaction between the components for surface treatment, to evaporate the carrier vehicle, to evaporate other components present in the mixture used to form the solid carrier component of the (A) filler and the (C) organopolysiloxane or to improve the mechanical properties of the solid carrier component before using in the process.

[00141 ] The composition for preparing the polymer composite article may be formed under mixing or shear, e.g. with suitable mixing equipment. For example, the composition may be formed in a vessel equipped with an agitator and/or mixing blades. The vessel may be, for example, an internal mixer, such as a Banbury, Sigma (Z) Blade, or Cavity Transfer style mixer. Alternatively or in addition, the composition may be formed in or processed by an extruder, which may be any extruder, e.g. a single screw extruder with rotational and/or reciprocating (co-kneader) screws, as well as multi-screw devices comprising two or more screws, which may be aligned tangentially or partially/fully intermeshing, revolving in either a co- or counter-rotational direction. Alternatively, a conical extruder may be used for forming the composition described herein.

[00142] As introduced above, the method also comprises preparing the polymer composite article from the composition for preparing the polymer composite article. The composition may be formed, e.g. in the vessel, and subsequently removed from the vessel to form the polymer composite article with separate equipment. Alternatively, the same equipment may be utilized to prepare the composition and subsequently form the polymer composite article. For example, the composition may be prepared and/or mixed in an extruder, and the extruder may be utilized to prepare the polymer composite article with the composition. Alternatively, the polymer composite article may be formed via molding, e.g. with an injection or transfer molding process. The composition may be formed in situ in the mold, or formed independently and disposed in the mold once formed. Alternatively still, the polymeric composite article may be a film. In such embodiments, the composition can be formed or disposed in a vessel, optionally under mixing at an elevated temperature, and disposed in or on equipment to prepare the film from the composition. Such equipment and techniques for preparing films from compositions, particularly those including thermoplastics like the (B) polymer of the composition, are well known in the art.

[00143] In certain embodiments, preparing the polymer composite article from the composition further comprises forming the composition into a desired shape. The desired shape depends on end use applications of the polymer composite article. One of skill in the art understands how dies for extrusion and molds for molding may be selected and created based on the desired shape of the polymer composite article. [00144] In certain embodiments, the method is performed continuously or semi-continuously in an extruder, such as a twin screw extruder (in which the screws are concurrently rotated, partially or fully intermeshing, alternatively counter rotated aligned either tangentially or partially or fully intermeshing). In one embodiment, the (C) organopolysiloxane is disposed in the extruder concurrently with the (A) filler and the (B) polymer. Alternatively, the (C) organopolysiloxane may be disposed in the extruder after melting the (B) polymer and before adding the (A) filler. Alternatively, the (C) organopolysiloxane may be disposed in the extruder after the (A) filler and the (B) polymer and before the polymer composite article exits the extruder. Alternatively, the (A) filler may be disposed in the extruder concurrently with the (C) organopolysiloxane, where they are heated to effect surface treatment of the (A) filler with the (C) organopolysiloxane, then the (B) polymer is disposed in the extruder to give a mixture and the temperature increased to a temperature suitable for compounding the mixture and forming the polymer composite article. The extruder may have one or more zones, such as 1 to 3, or 3 to 8, or 1 to 12, zones, where starting materials can be added. The zones may be heated at different temperatures.

[00145] In specific embodiments, the (B) polymer is disposed in a first zone of the extruder, which is heated at +/-30 °C within the melting point temperature of the (B) polymer. The (C) organopolysiloxane is disposed in a second zone of the extruder, which is heated at 10 °C to 90 °C above the melting point temperature of the (B) polymer. As noted above, the temperature utilized is typically less than a degradation temperature of the components of the composition. In certain embodiments, a die of the extruder may also be heated, and the temperatures utilized by the extruder, including the temperature of any zone and the die, does not exceed a degradation temperature of the (A) filler. The degradation temperature of the (A) filler is contingent on the selection thereof, as understood by one of skill in the art.

[00146] In certain embodiments, depending on a selection of the (B) polymer, the method prepares an uncured or unvulcanized polymer composite article, and the method further comprises curing and/or vulcanizing the uncured or unvulcanized polymer composite article to give the polymer composite article. Curing or vulcanizing the uncured or unvulcanized polymer composite article generally maintains shape and dimension of the polymer composite article. Typically, in such embodiments, curing and/or vulcanizing is carried out at an elevated temperature that is higher than the processing or compounding temperature utilizing to form the uncured or unvulcanized polymer composite article. Curing or vulcanizing is typically carried out when the (B) polymer comprises the elastomer.

[00147] The polymer composite article of the invention is not limited and may be customized for myriad end use applications and industries. By way of example only, the polymer composite article may be utilized in or as tubing; piping; hosing; an insulating (e.g. thermally and/or electrically insulating) article; a conductive (e.g. thermally and/or electrically conductive) article; automotive components or applications, including under hood components and parts and interior components, e.g. floor mats; consumer products and applications, industrial or commercial products and applications, aerospace products and applications, transportation products and applications, aircraft products and applications, electronics products and applications, residential or commercial building and construction products and applications, e.g. decking, railing, siding, fencing, window framing, flooring, etc..

[00148] The invention has been described in an illustrative manner, and it is to be understood that the terminology which has been used is intended to be in the nature of words of description rather than of limitation. Obviously, many modifications and variations of the present invention are possible in light of the above teachings. The invention may be practiced otherwise than as specifically described.

[00149] Industrial Applicability

Without wishing to be bound by theory, it is thought that the (C) organopolysiloxane may provide one or more benefits to the polymer composites and/or processes for making them described herein. These include:

[00150] Lower torque during compounding;

[00151 ] Increased compounding through put and or lower energy consumption;

[00152] Better filler dispersion and reduced glass fiber breakup (if glass fibers are used) during compounding and molding;

[00153] Ability to mold thinner walls;

[00154] Ability to include high filler loadings;

[00155] Less reject rates during demolding;

[00156] Better surface quality; and/or

[00157] Improved hydrophobicity.

[00158] Increased selection of other components, such as (D) compatibilizers

[00159] Ability to utilize a larger proportion of recycled polymers or different grades

[00160] Increased selection of fillers

[00161 ] Enabling additives that improve strength and other properties

[00162] Using the solid carrier component, which is a solid at 25°C and 1 atmosphere to deliver the solid carrier component may solve the problem of delivery of the (C) organopolysiloxane into the composition and polymer composite article prepared therewith. Using a solid carrier component instead of a liquid polyorganosiloxane may provide the benefit of using a liquid organopolysiloxane in conventional solids handling equipment, such as extruders. [00163] Examples 1 -16 and Comparative Examples 1 -4:

[00164] Table 1 below shows the types and amounts of components utilized to prepare compositions of Examples 1 -16 and Comparative Examples 1 -4. In Table 1 , “C.E.” designates comparative example. Each value in Table 1 is a part by weight value.

[00165] Table 1 :

[00166] The (B) polymer 1 is a polyvinyl chloride polymer having an inherent viscosity of

0.91 as measured in accordance with ASTM D-5225 and a bulk density of 0.52 g/cm^ as measured in accordance with ASTM D-1895.

[00167] The (N) heat stabilizer is a methyl tin mercaptide heat stabilizer.

[00168] The (O) lubricant is a blend of paraffin wax, calcium stearate, and oxidized low density polyethylene. [00169] The (M) impact modifier is an acrylic impact modifier having a core/shell structure and an average particle size of from 90 to 500 nm.

[00170] The (A) filler 1 is titanium dioxide.

[00171] The (A) filler 2 is calcium carbonate that has been surface treated with stearic acid.

[00172] The (A) 3 filler 3 is calcium carbonate, untreated.

[00173] The (C) organopolysiloxane 1 is a hydroxy terminated siloxane with a viscosity of 13,500 cst at 25 °C.

[00174] The (C) organopolysiloxane 2 is a hydroxy terminated siloxane with a viscosity of 6,000 cst at 25‘C.

[00175] The compositions of Examples 1 -16 and Comparative Examples 1 -4 were formed in the same manner. In particular, the (B) polymer was disposed at room temperature in a Gunther Papenmeier/Welex blender, and the power of the blender was increased to 15A. The (M) heat stabilizer was disposed in the blender at 51.6 °C, the lubricant was disposed in the blender at 65.5 °C, and the (M) impact modifier was disposed in the blender at 76.6 °C. The (A) filler 1 was added at 87.7 °C, and the (A) fillers 2 and 3 were added at 90.6 °C. The (C) organopolysiloxanes 1 and 2 were post blended at room temperature using a small blender.

[00176] The compositions of Table 1 were milled at 185 °C for 3 minutes on an electric Collin Roll mill with a 0.3 mm gap to give a milled sheet from each composition, then the milled sheet was compression molded to 3.2 mm thick plaque at 190 °C. Color performance of the plaques was measured using Lab Scan (HunterLab), and notched Izod impact strength (measured in accordance with ASTM D256) was evaluated. These physical properties are set forth in Table 2 below.

[00177] Table 2:

[00178] Additional physical properties of the composites made in Examples 1 -16 and Comparative Examples 1 -4 were measured and set forth in Tables 3 and 4 below. The physical properties set forth in Table 3 were measured in accordance with ASTM D638 using a type 5 tensile bar and a rate of 0.5 inches/minute. The physical properties set forth in Table 4, which relate to Brabender Rheology Compaction and Fusion Time, Torque were measured using a Brabender mixer, commercially available from Brabender GmbH & Co. KG of Duisburg, Germany, with operating conditions maintained at 60 RPM, 185 °C, and 65 gram resin.

[00179] Table 3:

[ooi so; Table 4:

[00182] Table 5 below shows the types and amounts of components utilized to prepare compositions of Examples 17-32 and Comparative Example 5. In Table 5,“C.E.” designates comparative example. Each value in Table 5 is a part by weight value.

[00183] Table 5:

[00184] The (B) polymer 2 is a polyvinyl chloride polymer having an inherent viscosity of

0.73 as measured in accordance with ASTM D-5225 and a bulk density of 0.56 g/cm^ as measured in accordance with ASTM D-1895.

[00185] The (I) process aid 1 is a high molecular weight acrylic process aid.

[00186] The (I) process aid 2 is a low molecular weight acrylic process aid.

[00187] The (A) filler 4 is wood flour.

[00188] The (D) compatibilizer 1 is a maleic anhydride comonomer grafted with a high density polyethylene.

[00189] The (D) compatibilizer 2 is a random ethylene copolymer which is classified as being a maleic anhydride equivalent.

[00190] The compositions of Examples 17-32 and Comparative Example 5 were formed in the same manner. In particular, the (B) polymer was disposed at room temperature in a Gunther Papenmeier/Welex blender, and the power of the blender was increased to 15A. The (N) heat stabilizer was disposed in the blender at 51 .6 °C, the lubricant was disposed in the blender at 65.5 °C, and the (M) impact modifier was disposed in the blender at 76.6 °C. The (A) fillers 2 is added at 90.6 °C. The (C) organopolysiloxanes 1 and 2 were post blended at room temperature using a small blender. The (A) filler 4 and the (D) compatibilizers 1 and 2 are added via post blending with a Gunther blender.

[00191 ] Table 6 below sets forth the Brabender Rheology Compaction and Fusion Time, Torque of the compositions of Examples 17-32 and Comparative Example 5. The physical properties in Table 6 were measured using a Brabender mixer, commercially available from Brabender GmbH & Co. KG of Duisburg, Germany, with operating conditions maintained at 60 RPM, 185 °C, and 65 gram resin.

[00192] Table 6

[00193] The compositions of Table 5 were milled at 185 °C for 3 minutes on an electric Collin Roll mill with a 0.3 mm gap to give a milled sheet from each composition, then the milled sheet was compression molded to 3.2 mm thick plaque at 190 °C. Notched Izod impact strength (measured in accordance with ASTM D256) and tensile properties (measured in accordance with ASTM D638 using a type 5 tensile bar and a rate of 0.5 inches/minute) are set forth below in Table 7.

[00194] Table 7:

[00195] The compositions of Examples 21 -23 and Comparative Example 5 were combined with 0.65 parts by weight of (F) a chemical blowing agent to give foamable compositions. The chemical blowing agent is a blend of exothermic and endothermic chemical blowing agents. The foamable compositions were extruded with an RS 5000 twin screw extruder from Polylab with a 2 inch sheet die and 45 mil die gap. [00196] The extrusion temperature setting was: 155 o C/175°C/180 o C/160°C, 60 RPM. These foamable compositions were extruded to give pressed plaques. The density of the mill and pressed plaque is 1 .377 g/cm^. Table 8 below summarizes the extrusion torque, output, and sheet density. A poor surface rating indicates a rough surface texture with visible defects, whereas a good surface rating indicates a smooth and defect free surface. The surface property is determined via visual inspection. PSI indicates pounds per square inch.

[00197] Table 8:

[00198] The melt temperature, die pressure and torque value were collected during extrusion process. Density was measured at room temperature using an Electronic Densimeter from Alfa Mirage Co. Ltd.

[00199] Examples 33-36 and Comparative Examples 6-7

[00200] Table 9 below shows the types and amounts of components utilized to prepare compositions of Examples 33-36 and Comparative Examples 6-7. In Table 9, “C.E.” designates comparative example. Each value in Table 9 is a part by weight value.

[00201 ] Table 9

[00202] The (I) process aid 3 is an ultra-high molecular weight acrylic process aid (having a molecular weight of greater than 10 million Daltons).

[00203] The (F) chemical blowing agent is a blend of exothermic and endothermic chemical blowing agents.

[00204] The foamable compositions of Examples 33-36 and Comparative Examples 6-7 were extruded with an RS 5000 twin screw extruder from Polylab with a 2 inch sheet die and

45 mil die gap. The extrusion temperature setting was: 155°C/175°C/180°C/160°C, 60 RPM. These foamable compositions were extruded to give pressed plaques. The density of the mill and pressed plaque is 1 .377 g/cm^. Table 10 below summarizes the extrusion torque, output, and sheet density.

[00205] Table 10

[00206] The melt temperature, die pressure and torque value were col ected during extrusion process. Density was measured at room temperature using an Electronic Densimeter from Alfa Mirage Co. Ltd. Rate was obtained by collecting a piece of sheet extruded in 30 second, measuring the weight of the sheet, and converting to g/min.

[00207] Examples 37-40 and Comparative Example 8

[00208] Table 1 1 below shows the types and amounts of components utilized to prepare compositions of Examples 37-40 and Comparative Example 8. In Table 1 1 ,“C.E.” designates comparative example. Each value in Table 1 1 is a part by weight value.

[00209] Table 1 1 :

[00210] The (I) process aid 4 is an high molecular weight acrylic process aid (having a molecular weight of less than 10 million Daltons).

[00211] The foamable compositions of Examples 37-40 and Comparative Example 8 were extruded with an RS 5000 twin screw extruder from Polylab with a 2 inch sheet die and 45 mil die gap. The extrusion temperature setting was: 155 o C/175°C/180 o C/160°C, 60 RPM. These foamable compositions were extruded to give pressed plaques. The density of the mill and pressed plaque is 1 .377 g/cm^. Table 12 below summarizes the extrusion torque, output, and sheet density.

[00212] Table 12

[00213] The melt temperature, die pressure and torque value were collected during extrusion process. Density was measured at room temperature using an Electronic Densimeter from Alfa Mirage Co. Ltd. Rate was obtained by collecting a piece of sheet extruded in 30 second, measuring the weight of the sheet, and converting to g/min.

[00214] Prophetic Example 1 - General Procedure for Preparation of a Pelletized Organopolysiloxane including a liquid organopolysiloxane and filler

[00215] To a pelletizing drum or disk, is added a powder filler such as wood flour to the rotating drum. Fine droplets of an organopolysiloxane liquid such as and a bis-hydroxyl terminated polydimethylsiloxane with dynamic viscosity of 13,500 mPa-s (OH PDMS) or alternative from Dow Silicones Corporation of Midland, Michigan, USA is slowly sprayed onto the powder in the rotating drum. As the powder falls, it will be coated by liquid and stick together. During this process an agglomerate will form and grow, creating small pellets of filler and siloxane.

[00216] Example 41 - Preparation of Organosiloxane/Filler Pellet

[00217] Fumed silica was mixed with OH PDMS. Using a stainless pan, 25.2 grams of fumed silica was manually mixed with 47.3 grams of OH PDMS, resulting in a free flowing powder. This can then be used as a source of OH PDMS by the customer.

[00218] Example 42 Preparation of Organosiloxane/Filler Pellet

[00219] Using a stainless pan, 97.0 grams of wood flour was manually mixed with 45.6 grams of OH PDMS, resulting in a free flowing powder. This can then be used as a source of the (C) organopolysiloxane by the customer.

[00220] Example 43 - Preparation of Organosiloxane/Filler Pellet (Prophetic)

[00221 ] Talc or calcium carbonate was added to a mixer. An organopolysiloxane, such as OH PDMS is slowly blended into the powder until it becomes sticky, then more of the filler is added until it is a free flowing powder.

[00222] Example 44-47 - Preparation of Organopolysiloxane/ Maleated Polyethylene (MAPE) Pellet [00223] Maleic anhydride grafted high density polyethylene (D), with a density of 0.96 g/cm^ as measured by ASTM D792 and hydroxyl terminated organopolysiloxane (C) are used in this example.

[00224] Compounding was conducted on a twin screw extruder. MAPE was fed at barrel zone via gravimetric feeder. OH PDMS was fed through an open port into a convey section of the screw after the feeder.

[00225] Torque value for different compositions are listed below in Table 13.

[00226] Table 13 - Torque Values in the TSE with different compositions of MAPE (D) and hydroxyl terminated organopolysiloxane (C).

[00227] These examples shows that pellets with varying concentrations of MAPE (D) and polyorganosiloxane (C) can be used to make a pellet. These examples show that under the conditions tested, 10% to 20% of the OH PDMS and 20% to 90% MAPE can be conveniently incorporated in a pellet. Without wishing to be bound by theory, it may be possible to incorporate higher amounts of organopolysiloxane into a pellet using a different organopolysiloxane, maleated polyethylene, or both.

[00228] Without wishing to be bound by theory, the composition provided herein may provide one or more of the following benefits: faster compounding through put, lower melt temperatures, lower pressures in extruders used to fabricate polymer composite articles from the composition, faster molding, better demolding, and lower reject rates. In addition, the organopolysiloxane (C) may improve filler dispersion, reduce fiber break up and reduce filler particle agglomeration.

[00229] Many manufacturers of polymer composite articles have existing equipment such as extruders, which are configured for solids feeds, and are not set up to feed liquids to form polymer composite articles. Providing a solid carrier component comprising the organopolysiloxane, where the solid carrier component is a solid at 25 °C and 1 atmosphere solves this problem and facilitates mixing and dispersion of the organopolysiloxane in the polymer composite article.

[00230] Definitions and Usage of Terms

[00231 ] Unless otherwise indicated by the context of the specification, all amounts, ratios and percentages are by weight, and all test methods are current as of the filing date of this disclosure. The articles“a”,“an” and“the” each refer to one or more. It is to be understood that the appended claims are not limited to express and particular compounds, compositions, or methods described in the detailed description, which may vary between particular embodiments which fall within the scope of the appended claims. With respect to any Markush groups relied upon herein for describing particular features or aspects of various embodiments, different, special, and/or unexpected results may be obtained from each member of the respective Markush group independent from all other Markush members. Each member of a Markush group may be relied upon individually and or in combination and provides adequate support for specific embodiments within the scope of the appended claims.

[00232] Further, any ranges and subranges relied upon in describing various embodiments of the present invention independently and collectively fall within the scope of the appended claims, and are understood to describe and contemplate all ranges including whole and/or fractional values therein, even if such values are not expressly written herein. One of skill in the art readily recognizes that the enumerated ranges and subranges sufficiently describe and enable various embodiments of the present invention, and such ranges and subranges may be further delineated into relevant halves, thirds, quarters, fifths, and so on. As just one example, a range“of from 0.1 to 0.9” may be further delineated into a lower third, i.e., from 0.1 to 0.3, a middle third, i.e., from 0.4 to 0.6, and an upper third, i.e., from 0.7 to 0.9, which individually and collectively are within the scope of the appended claims, and may be relied upon individually and/or collectively and provide adequate support for specific embodiments within the scope of the appended claims. In addition, with respect to the language which defines or modifies a range, such as“at least,”“greater than,”“less than,”“no more than,” and the like, it is to be understood that such language includes subranges and/or an upper or lower limit. As another example, a range of“at least 10” inherently includes a subrange of from at least 10 to 35, a subrange of from at least 10 to 25, a subrange of from 25 to 35, and so on, and each subrange may be relied upon individually and/or collectively and provides adequate support for specific embodiments within the scope of the appended claims. Finally, an individual number within a disclosed range may be relied upon and provides adequate support for specific embodiments within the scope of the appended claims. For example, a range“of from 1 to 9” includes various individual integers, such as 3, as well as individual numbers including a decimal point (or fraction), such as 4.1 , which may be relied upon and provide adequate support for specific embodiments within the scope of the appended claims.

[00233] The term“composition,” as used herein, includes material(s) which comprise the composition, as well as reaction products and decomposition products formed from the materials of the composition. [00234] The term “comprising,” and derivatives thereof, is not intended to exclude the presence of any additional component, step or procedure, whether or not the same is disclosed herein. In order to avoid any doubt, all compositions claimed herein through use of the term“comprising” may include any additional additive, adjuvant, or compound, whether polymeric or otherwise, unless stated to the contrary. In contrast, the term, “consisting essentially of” excludes from the scope of any succeeding recitation any other component, step or procedure, excepting those that are not essential to operability. The term“consisting of” excludes any component, step or procedure not specifically delineated or listed.

[00235] The term“polymer,” as used herein, refers to a polymeric compound prepared by polymerizing monomers, whether of the same or a different type. The generic term polymer thus embraces the term homopolymer (employed to refer to polymers prepared from only one type of monomer, with the understanding that trace amounts of impurities can be incorporated into the polymer structure), and the term interpolymer as defined hereinafter. Trace amounts of impurities may be incorporated into and/or within the polymer.

[00236] The term “interpolymer,” as used herein, refers to a polymer prepared by the polymerization of at least two different types of monomers. The generic term interpolymer thus includes copolymers (employed to refer to polymers prepared from two different types of monomers), and polymers prepared from more than two different types of monomers.

[00237] The term, “olefin-based polymer,” as used herein, refers to a polymer that comprises, in polymerized form, a majority amount of olefin monomer, for example ethylene or propylene (based on the weight of the polymer), and optionally may comprise at least one polymerized comonomer.

[00238] The term, “ethylene-based polymer,” as used herein, refers to a polymer that comprises a majority amount of polymerized ethylene monomer (based on the total weight of the polymer), and optionally may comprise at least one polymerized comonomer.

[00239] The term,“ethylene/a-olefin interpolymer,” as used herein, refers to an interpolymer that comprises, in polymerized form, a majority amount of ethylene monomer (based on the weight of the interpolymer), and at least one a-olefin.

[00240] The term,“ethylene/a-olefin copolymer,” as used herein, refers to a copolymer that comprises, in polymerized form, a majority amount of ethylene monomer (based on the weight of the copolymer), and an a-olefin, as the only two monomer types.

[00241 ] The term“LDPE” may also be referred to as“high pressure ethylene polymer” or “highly branched polyethylene” and is defined to mean that the polymer is partly or entirely homopolymerized or copolymerized in autoclave or tubular reactors at pressures above 14,500 psi (100 MPa) with the use of free-radical initiators, such as peroxides (see for example US 4,599,392, which is hereby incorporated by reference). LDPE resins typically have a density in the range of 0.916 to 0.940 g/cm 3 .

[00242] The term“LLDPE”, includes resins made using the traditional Ziegler-Natta catalyst systems as well as single-site catalysts such as bis-metallocenes (sometimes referred to as “m-LLDPE”), post-metallocene catalysts, and constrained geometry catalysts, and includes linear, substantially linear or heterogeneous polyethylene copolymers or homopolymers. LLDPEs contain less long chain branching than LDPEs and includes the substantially linear ethylene polymers which are further defined in U.S. Patent 5,272,236, U.S. Patent 5,278,272, U.S. Patent 5,582,923 and US Patent 5,733,155; the homogeneously branched linear ethylene polymer compositions such as those in U.S. Patent No. 3,645,992; the heterogeneously branched ethylene polymers such as those prepared according to the process disclosed in U.S. Patent No. 4,076,698; and/or blends thereof (such as those disclosed in US 3,914,342 or US 5,854,045). The LLDPEs can be made via gas-phase, solution-phase or slurry polymerization or any combination thereof, using any type of reactor or reactor configuration known in the art, with gas and slurry phase reactors being most preferred.

[00243] The term“MDPE” refers to polyethylenes having densities from 0.926 to 0.940 g/cm 3 . “MDPE” is typically made using chromium or Ziegler-Natta catalysts or using metallocene, constrained geometry, or single site catalysts, and typically have a molecular weight distribution (“MWD”) greater than 2.5.

[00244] The term“HDPE” refers to polyethylenes having densities greater than about 0.940 g/cm 3 , which are generally prepared with Ziegler-Natta catalysts, chrome catalysts or even metallocene catalysts.

[00245] “Blend”, “polymer blend” and like terms mean a composition of two or more polymers. Such a blend may or may not be miscible. Such a blend may or may not be phase separated. Such a blend may or may not contain one or more domain configurations, as determined from transmission electron spectroscopy, light scattering, x-ray scattering, and any other method known in the art. Blends are not laminates, but one or more layers of a laminate may contain a blend.