• high density;
  • waste drilling mud;
  • chitosan grafted;
  • AM;
  • DMC;
  • highly effective flocculant


High performance flocculant was prepared by chitosan (CS), ethacryloyloxyethyl trimethyl ammonium chloride (DMC), and acrylamide (AM). The optimum preparation conditions were determined by orthogonal test of four factors and three levels. The different factors affecting the flocculating ability of the prepared flocculants for waste drilling mud were studied, and optimal synthesis conditions were established: polymerization temperature was 60, reaction time was 4 h, DMC was 3 mL, w(AM) : w(CS) was 4, and the initiator was 0.4% of AM (wt %). The prepared CS–AM–DMC copolymer was characterized by Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and gel permeation chromatography (GPC). The results showed that AM, DMC were grafted to CS successfully. The solid–liquid separation properties were also investigated, and the prepared flocculant showed great advantages than commercial products for high density waste drilling mud use. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Appl Polym Sci, 2012