Rolling and roll-drawing of ultrahigh molecular weight polyethylene reactor powders

Authors

  • Li-Hui Wang,

    1. Polymer Science & Engineering Department, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, Massachusetts 01003
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    • On leave from Fudan University, Shanghai, China.

  • Roger S. Porter

    Corresponding author
    1. Polymer Science & Engineering Department, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, Massachusetts 01003
    • Polymer Science & Engineering Department, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, Massachusetts 01003
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Abstract

Ultrahigh molecular weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) reactor powders have been found to be processable in the solid state by the techniques of rolling and roll-drawing. Plates of compacted UHMWPE reactor powder were prepared below their melting points. These plates were then rolled at 124°C. The maximum uniaxial draw ratio (DR) obtained by multiple rolling was about 10. In additional experiments, rolled plates of a DR of 6 were further drawn by tensile stretching at a temperature of 135°C. The specimens prepared by rolling and by the two-stage draw were characterized by tensile measurements, differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), and X-ray diffraction. Results show that, on rolling alone, the tensile modulus and tensile strength achieved were 3 GPa and 42 MPa, respectively, at a DR of 9.6. The rolled plates were effectively drawn further to a total DR of 86. Such highly drawn films exhibited tensile moduli and tensile strength up to 81 and 1.3 GPa, respectively. A high crystallinity and high crystal orientation were also obtained by the two-stage draw.

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