Copper-mediated homogeneous living radical polymerization of acrylamide with waxy potato starch-based macroinitiator

Yifei Fan, Huatang Cao, Frank van Mastrigt, Yutao Pei, Francesco Picchioni

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Cu0-mediated living radical polymerization (Cu0-mediated LRP) was employed in this research for the synthesis of starch-g-polyacrylamide (St-g-PAM). The use of a controlled radical grafting technique is necessary, as compared to the traditional free-radical polymerization methods, in order to obtain a well-defined structure of the final product. This is in turn essential for studying the relationship between such structure and the end-properties. Waxy potato starch-based water-soluble macroinitiator was first synthesized by esterification with 2-bromopropionyl bromide in the mixture of dimethylacetamide and lithium chloride. With the obtained macroinitiator, St-g-PAM was homogeneously synthesized by aqueous Cu0-mediated LRP using CuBr/hexamethylated tris(2-aminoethyl)amine (Me6Tren) as catalyst. The successful synthesis of the macroinitiator and St-g-PAM was proved by NMR, FT-IR, SEM, XRD and TGA analysis. The molecular weight and polydispersity of PAM chains were analyzed by gel permeation chromatography (GPC) after hydrolyzing the starch backbone. Monomer conversion was monitored by gas chromatography (GC), on the basis of which the kinetics were determined. A preliminarily rheological study was performed on aqueous solutions of the prepared materials.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)61-68
Number of pages8
JournalCarbohydrate Polymers
Publication statusPublished - 15-Jul-2018

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