Adding small amounts of nanoparticles is an effective way to manipulate the morphology of immiscible polymer blends. However, although diffusely recognized, the potential of such an approach remains largely untapped. One of the reasons is the lack of fundamental understanding of the mechanisms that determine the nanoparticle-induced morphology alterations. This feature article addresses this topic, reviewing the recent literature and providing the authors’ perspective on the future trends. The first part of the work is dedicated to the analysis of the effects of nanoparticles on the size, shape and stability over time of the polymer phases. Specifically, nanoparticle-induced phenomena such as morphology refinement, coarsening, formation of irregularly shaped domains, promotion of co-continuity, and morphology stabilization are critically discussed. In the second part, the perspectives of a clever employ of nanoparticles in polymer blends of technological interest are illustrated. Particular attention is paid to the strategies for valorizing biopolymers and recycled plastics, whose inherently scarce performances might greatly benefit from the approaches revised in this paper.
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