A series of biopolymer-based superabsorbent hydrogels based on carboxymethyl cellulose has been prepared by free-radical graft copolymerization of acrylamide and 2-acrylamido-2-methylpropan sulfonic acid (AMPS) in aqueous solution using methylenebisacrylamide as a crosslinking agent and ammonium persulfate as an initiator. The effect of variables on the swelling capacity such as: acrylamide/AMPS weight ratio, reaction temperature, and concentration of the initiator and crosslinker were systematically optimized. The results indicated that with increasing the amount of AMPS, the swelling capacity is increased. FT-IR spectroscopy and scanning electron microscope analysis were used to confirm the hydrogel structure. Swelling measurements of the synthesized hydrogels in different salt solutions indicated considerable swelling capacity. The absorbency under load of the superabsorbent hydrogels was determined by using an absorbency under load tester at various applied pressures. A preliminary swelling and deswelling behaviors of the hydrogels were also studied. © 2009 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Appl Polym Sci, 2009
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