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Synthesis of reactive soybean oils for use as a biobased thermoset resins in structural natural fiber composites



Biobased thermosets resins were synthesized by functionalizing the triglycerides of epoxidized soybean oil with methacrylic acid, acetyl anhydride, and methacrylic anhydride. The obtained resins were characterized with FTIR, 1H-NMR, and 13C-NMR spectroscopy to confirm the functionalization reactions and the extent of epoxy conversion. The viscosities of the methacrylated soybean oil resins were also measured for the purpose of being used as a matrix in composite applications. The cross-linking capability was estimated by UV and thermally initiated curing experiments, and by DSC analysis regarding the degree of crosslinking. The modifications were successful because up to 97% conversion of epoxy group were achieved leaving only 2.2% of unreacted epoxy groups, which was confirmed by 1H-NMR. The 13C-NMR confirms the ratio of acetate to methacrylate methyl group to be 1 : 1. The viscosities of the methacrylated soybean oil (MSO) and methacrylic anhydride modified soybean oil (MMSO) were 0.2 and 0.48 Pas, respectively, which indicates that they can be used in resin transfer molding process. © 2009 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Appl Polym Sci, 2010