Radical bulk polymerization of N-vinylcaprolactam



Bulk radical polymerization of N-vinylcaprolactam was studied at temperatures between 60 and 120°C. with different initiators. Satisfactory results were obtained with azobisisobutyronitrile, tert-butyl perbenzoate, and tert-butyl peroxide as initiators. The polymerization reaction of N-vinylcaprolactam with these initiators is first order with respect to the monomer and 0.5 order with respect to the initiator. A linearity of the kinetic curves up to high conversions was observed. The cause of this behavior is a feeble gel effect, which also induces an increase of the molecular weight during polymerization.