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Title: Microwave assisted ring-opening polymerisation and structural polymers
Author: Nguyen, Nam T.
ISNI:       0000 0004 2742 5834
Awarding Body: University of Nottingham
Current Institution: University of Nottingham
Date of Award: 2012
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This thesis reports the synthesis of polycaprolactone via ring-opening polymerisation of ϵ-caprolactone using alcohol/tin octanoate as the initiator/ catalyst system. The projects in this thesis aimed to investigate the polymerisation when it was conducted by the use of microwave heating and to develop new synthetic approaches for the synthesis of 3 dimensional structural polymers. Chapter 1: The fundamentals of ring opening polymer chemistry is discussed which is the polymerisation methodology employed in this thesis. In addition, the theory and background of microwave heating mechanism and application is also provided. Chapter 2: This chapter discusses the synthetic methods, equipment and characterisation techniques that are used in this thesis. Chapter 3: The practical work concerned with bulk microwave-assisted ring-opening polymerisation is discussed with the focus on the synthesis of linear polycaprolactone, using CEM reactor (microwave) which is operated at 2.45 GHz and an oil bath (conventional) to generate the energy input to the reaction. The investigation of the polymerisation kinetics, control characteristics, process optimisation and the effect of microwave on the reaction are also discussed in this section. This work clearly demonstrated that the polymerisations require a shorter cycle time when microwave heating was used and this has been as a result of the selective heating of certain reaction components. Chapter 4: The synthesis and characterisation of star polymers using both microwave and conventional heating is reported in this chapter. 3- and 4- arm star materials were successfully produced and again reaction times were shown to be reduced in the microwave reactions. Chapter 5: The investigation of a new synthetic approach for the synthesis of highly branched polycaprolactone is contained in this chapter. The branching copolymerisation reactions were conducted by polymerising ϵ-caprolactone in the presence of a di-lactone. The molecular structures of the polymers were also characterised by various methods which confirm the branched architecture.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available