Reversibility of thermodynamic lower critical solution temperature phenomenon in miscible poly(ε-caprolactone)/poly(benzyl methacrylate)

Tarun K. Mandai, Eamor Woo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Differential scanning calorimetry and optical microscopy were performed to examine the reversibility of phase separation at above the lower critical solution temperatures in a miscible poly(ε-caprolactone) (PCL)/poly(benzyl methacrylate) (PBzMA) blend system. Upon heating, phase separation occurred via a binodal nucleation and growth (NG) mechanism at above 240 °C, which is a lower critical solution temperature (LCST). The pattern of phase domains suggests that the phase separation was meta-stable. Interestingly, the LCST phase separation was found to be readily reversible to original homogeneity upon cooling at regularly accessible rates. A major factor may be that the temperature window between the LCST curve and blend Tg curve is wide, resulting in a convenient temperature range for the polymer chains to kinetically reorganize to a state favored by the thermodynamic conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)205-211
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Polymer Research
Volume5
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1998 Oct 1

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Thermodynamics
Phase separation
Temperature
Optical microscopy
polycaprolactone
benzyl methacrylate
Differential scanning calorimetry
Polymers
Nucleation
Cooling
Heating

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Materials Chemistry

Cite this

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abstract = "Differential scanning calorimetry and optical microscopy were performed to examine the reversibility of phase separation at above the lower critical solution temperatures in a miscible poly(ε-caprolactone) (PCL)/poly(benzyl methacrylate) (PBzMA) blend system. Upon heating, phase separation occurred via a binodal nucleation and growth (NG) mechanism at above 240 °C, which is a lower critical solution temperature (LCST). The pattern of phase domains suggests that the phase separation was meta-stable. Interestingly, the LCST phase separation was found to be readily reversible to original homogeneity upon cooling at regularly accessible rates. A major factor may be that the temperature window between the LCST curve and blend Tg curve is wide, resulting in a convenient temperature range for the polymer chains to kinetically reorganize to a state favored by the thermodynamic conditions.",
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