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Abstract

In order to elucidate the copolymerization mechanism, the properties of the copolymer obtained by the iodine-initiated copolymerization of the tetraoxane–1,3-dioxolane–methylal system have been studied using gas chromatography, microscopy, scanning electron microscopy, differential scanning calorimetry, and gel permeation chromatography. From the behavior of the thermal stability and gas chromatography of the reaction mixture, it was found that reactivity of 1,3-dioxolane with active center is larger than that of tetraoxane, i.e., more than 90% 1,3-dioxolane is consumed at an early stage of the polymerization. The results obtained by microscopy, DSC, and GPC of the copolymer suggested that the copolymerization proceeds from the surface to the center of the tetraoxane crystal as if it were a core model. It was also suggested that the heterogeniety in copolymer properties can be explained not only by heterogeneous dispersion of 1,3-dioxolane in tetraoxane crystal, but also by the difference of reactivity of 1,3-dioxolane with the active center.