• copolymer;
  • crystallization;
  • biopolymers;
  • renewable polymers


Stereo multiblock poly(lactic acid)s (PLA)s and stereo diblock poly(lactic acid) (DB) with a wide variety of block length of 15.4–61.9 lactyl units are synthesized, and the effects of block length sequence on crystallization and spherulite growth behavior are investigated at different crystallization temperatures, in comparison with neat poly(L-lactide) (PLLA), poly(D-lactide) (PDLA), and PLLA/PDLA blend. Only stereocomplex crystallites as crystalline species are formed in the stereo multiblock PLAs and DB, irrespective of block length and crystallization temperature. The maximum crystallinities (33–61%), maximum radial growth rate of spherulites (0.7–56.7 μm min−1), and equilibrium melting temperatures (182.0–216.5°C) increased with increasing block length but are less than those of PLLA/PDLA blend (67 %, 122.5 μm min−1, and 246.0°C). The spherulite growth rates and overall crystallization rates of the stereo multiblock PLAs and DB increased with increasing block length and are lower than that of PLLA/PDLA blend. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J. Appl. Polym. Sci., 2013