Soybean oil-based shape-memory polyurethanes: Synthesis and characterization

Authors

  • Shida Miao,

    1. National Key Laboratory of Biochemical Engineering, Institute of Process Engineering, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China
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  • Ping Wang,

    1. Biotechnology Institute and Department of Bioproducts and Biosystems Engineering, University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN, USA
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  • Zhiguo Su,

    1. National Key Laboratory of Biochemical Engineering, Institute of Process Engineering, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China
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  • Youyan Liu,

    1. Guangxi Key Laboratory of Biorefinery, Guangxi University, Nanning, China
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  • Songping Zhang

    Corresponding author
    1. National Key Laboratory of Biochemical Engineering, Institute of Process Engineering, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China
    • National Key Laboratory of Biochemical Engineering, Institute of Process Engineering, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100190, China Fax: +86 10 82544958
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Abstract

Shape-memory polymers (SMPs) have wide range of applications due to their ability to sense environmental stimuli and reshape from a temporary shape to a permanent shape. Plant oil-based polymeric materials are highly concerned in recent years in consideration of petroleum depletion and environmental pollution. However, plant oil-based polymers are rarely investigated regarding their shape-memory characteristics though bio-based SMPs are highly desired nowadays. In this study, a series of soybean oil-based shape-memory polyurethanes (SSMPUs) are prepared through a mild chemo-enzymatic synthetic route, and their properties are fully characterized with tensile testing, DSC, dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA), and shape-memory testing. Results show that SSMPUs are soft rubbers with tensile strength in the range of 1.9–2.2 MPa and glass transition temperature in the range of 2–5°C, and possess good shape recoveries at RT when stretching ratio is 10, 20, and 30%, respectively. This work would promote the development of high-value-added plant oil-based shape-memory polyurethanes.

Practical applications: Using annual renewable plant oil as feedstock, the synthesized SSMPUs show good shape recovery properties, which will make them applicable as potential alternatives to petroleum-based shape-memory materials. The simple and mild preparation process also contributes to the further exploration of plant oil to value-added functional materials.

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