Cure kinetics of epoxy/anhydride thermosetting matrix systems

E. M. Woo, J. C. Seferis

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The kinetics of bisphenol‐A diglycidyl ether epoxy (DGEBA) cured with trimellitic anhydride (TMA) were studied using differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and FT‐IR under isothermal temperatures in the range of 100–200°C. The effects of an onium salt catalyst and styrene monomer (a reactive diluent additive) on cure kinetics of the DGEBA/TMA resin systems were also investigated. For the uncatalyzed DGEBA/TMA system, the reaction was found to be second order up to a fractional conversion of 0.8, where a diffusion‐limited reaction regime was observed as the matrix gelled. The apparent activation energy was calculated to be 11.3 kcal/mol. The cure reaction of the catalyzed DGEBA/TMA system was found to be second order up to a fractional conversion of 0.3 and first order thereafter. The apparent activation energy of the catalyzed resin system was calculated to be 12.3 kcal/mol. In the FT‐IR investigation, it was discovered that the KBr powder catalyzed the cure reaction. Additionally, the styrene component in the styrene‐DGEBA/TMA resin system polymerized independently in the later stage of the cure reaction of the epoxy component. Therefore, the styrene monomer had little effect on the kinetics of cure reaction of the epoxy system.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1237-1256
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Applied Polymer Science
Issue number7-8
Publication statusPublished - 1990 Oct 5

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemistry
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Materials Chemistry


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