SEARCH

SEARCH BY CITATION

Keywords:

  • kinetics (polym.);
  • nascent polymerization;
  • polyethylene (PE);
  • rapid reaction;
  • Ziegler-Natta polymerization

Abstract

Thumbnail image of graphical abstract

A detailed investigation of the kinetics, morphology and polymer properties observed during the polymerisation of ethylene on a Ziegler-Natta catalyst at very short times (t ≥ 40 ms) in a novel, quenched-flow reactor is presented. It was found that for times shorter than a tenth of a second, the observed rate of polymerisation was significantly higher than expected, and that the crystallinity of the nascent ethylene homopolymer was of the order of 25 to 30% – much lower than expected. Evidence is presented that shows that fragmentation is essentially complete in a small fraction of a second.