An investigation was carried out on estimation of hydrophilicity, wettability and water-absorptivity, and surface analysis by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy of the low- and high-density polyethylene (LDPE and HDPE) plates photografted with methacrylic acid (MAA) and acrylic acid (AA) at different monomer concentrations or temperatures. Wettability of the MAA-grafted LDPE and HDPE plates increased with grafted amounts, and became constant when the substrate surfaces were fully covered with the grafted polymer chains. On the other hand, for the AA-grafted LDPE and HDPE plates, wettability had the maximum value, and then gradually decreased against the grafted amount probably due to aggregation of grafted PAA chains, although the surfaces were covered with grafted PAA chains at lower grafted amounts compared with grafted PMAA chains. Water-absorptivity sharply increased at lower grafted amounts due to formation of shorter grafted polymer chains for photografting at lower monomer concentrations or due to restriction of the location of grafting to the outer surface region for photografting at lower temperatures. Therefore, for photograftings of AA or onto the HDPE plates, the substrate surfaces were covered with grafted polymer chains and the grafted layers formed possessed higher water-absorptivity at lower grafted amounts. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Appl Polym Sci, 2012
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