High molecular weight poly(L-lactide) and poly(ethylene oxide) blends: Thermal characterization and physical properties

AJ Nijenhuis, E Colstee, DW Grijpma, AJ Pennings

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Abstract

The miscibility of high molecular weight poly(L-lactide) (PLLA) with high molecular weight poly(ethylene oxide) (PEG) was studied by differential scanning calorimetry. Ail blends containing up to 50 weight% PEO showed single glass transition temperatures. The PLLA and PEO melting temperatures were found to decrease on blending, the equilibrium melting points of PLLA in these blends decreased with increasing PEO fractions. These results suggest the miscibility of PLLA and PEO in the amorphous phase. Mechanical properties of blends with up to 20 weight% PEO were also studied. Changes in mechanical properties were small in blends with less than 10 weight% PEO. At higher PEO concentrations the materials became very flexible, an elongation at break of more than 500% was observed for a blend with 20 weight% PEG. Hydrolytic degradation up to 30 days of the blends showed only a small variation in tensile strength at PEO concentrations less than 15 weight%. As a result of the increased hydrophilicity, however, the blends swelled. Mass loss upon degradation was attributed to partial dissolution of the PEO fraction and to an increased rate of degradation of the PLLA fraction. Significant differences in degradation behaviour between PLLA/PEO blends and PLLA/PEO/PLLA triblock-copolymers were observed. Copyright (C) 1996 Elsevier Science Ltd.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5849-5857
Number of pages9
JournalPolymer
Volume37
Issue number26
Publication statusPublished - Dec-1996

Keywords

  • poly(L-lactide)
  • poly(ethylene oxide)
  • blends
  • COMPATIBLE POLYMER BLENDS
  • MELTING-POINT DEPRESSION
  • ISOTACTIC POLYSTYRENE
  • POLY(METHYL METHACRYLATE)
  • BEHAVIOR
  • CRYSTALLIZATION
  • KINETICS
  • STARCH
  • DEGRADATION
  • MORPHOLOGY

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