Influence of the chemical structure of cross-linking agents on properties of thermally reversible networks

Lorenzo Massimo Polgar, Robin R. J. Cerpentier, Gijs H. Vermeij, Francesco Picchioni*, Martin van Duin

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)
24 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

It is well-known that the properties of cross-linked rubbers are strongly affected by the cross-link density. In this work it is shown that for thermoreversibly cross-linked elastomers, the type and length of the cross-linker also have a significant effect. A homologous series of diamine and bismaleimide cross-linkers was used to cross-link maleic-anhydride-grafted EPM irreversibly and furan-modified EPM thermoreversibly, respectively. Bismaleimide cross-linkers with a polarity close to that of EPM and a relatively low melting point have a better solubility in the rubber matrix, which results in higher chemical conversion and, thus, higher cross-link densities at the same molar amount of cross-linker. Samples cross-linked with different spacers (aromatic and aliphatic spacers of different lengths) were compared at the same cross-link density to interpret the effects on the material properties. The rigid character of the short aliphatic and the aromatic cross-linkers accounts for the observed increase in hardness, Young's modulus and tensile strength with respect to the longer, more flexible aliphatic cross-linkers. In conclusion, the structure of the cross-linking agent can be considered as an alternative variable in tuning the rubber properties, especially for thermoreversibly crosslinked rubber.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1103-1116
Number of pages14
JournalPure and Applied Chemistry
Volume88
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec-2016

Keywords

  • cross-linking
  • cross-linker
  • elastomer
  • material properties
  • POC-16
  • rubber
  • structure-property
  • thermoreversible
  • DIELS-ALDER REACTION
  • MALEATED ETHYLENE/PROPYLENE COPOLYMERS
  • BEARING FURAN MOIETIES
  • MALEIC-ANHYDRIDE
  • NATURAL-RUBBER
  • REACTIVE EXTRUSION
  • EPDM RUBBER
  • POLYMERS
  • ELASTOMERS
  • VULCANIZATION

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