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The photo-curing behavior of composites containing nanosized SiO2 in an acrylated hyperbranched polymer matrix was investigated by means of photo differential scanning calorimetry. The chemical conversion data were analyzed using an autocatalytic model, paying close attention to the influence of composition and UV intensity. It was shown that the reaction order and the autocatalytic exponent were independent of UV intensity and filler fraction, whereas the rate constant showed strong intensity dependence, but weak filler dependence. Maximum conversion was independent of UV intensity, but was reduced when a filler was present. The dispersion state influenced the gel-point of the composites, but had no influence on the overall cure kinetics. Cure shrinkage reduction of ~33% could be achieved by adding 20 vol% of filler. This was attributed to the reduced double bond conversion of the matrix due to the presence of the filler. © 2009 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Appl Polym Sci 114: 1954–1963, 2009