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Effect of process parameters on properties of wet-spun poly(L,D-lactide) copolymer multifilament fibers



Poly(L,D-lactide) [P(L,D)LA], LL/D ratio 96/4, and poly(L,DL-lactide) [P(L,DL)LA], L/DL ratio 70/30, multifilament fibers were prepared by wet-spinning and the effects of the spin draw ratio and the coagulant on the morphological, thermal, and mechanical properties of the filaments were studied. The hydrolytic degradation of filaments was studied in vitro. The filament diameter and the mechanical properties of filaments were highly dependent on the spin draw ratio, whereas the coagulant had no or minor effect. The filament diameters were in the range of 11–36 μm and the maximum tenacity of 150 MPa was obtained at the spin draw ratio of 7.0 for both copolymers. The copolymer had the main importance on the crystallinity of filaments, but it was also affected by the duration of the coagulation process. The crystallinities of P(L,D)LA 96/4 filaments were in the range of 5–16%, whereas P(L,DL)LA 70/30 filaments were totally amorphous. The degree of crystallinity had effect on the hydrolytic degradation of filaments. The tenacity loss of P(L,D)LA 96/4 filaments was about 10% and that of P(L,DL)LA 70/30 filaments was as high as 50% after 24 weeks in vitro. © 2009 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Appl Polym Sci, 2009