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Keywords:

  • gel permeation chromatography (GPC);
  • monitoring;
  • polystyrene;
  • servo and regulatory control;
  • weight-average molecular weight

Abstract

Thumbnail image of graphical abstract

Simulation and experimental studies are carried out for peroxide-initiated styrene solution polymerization in a lumped-distributed reactor. Weight-average molecular weight (intrinsic viscosity measurements) and conversion (density data) are the output signals, while the manipulated variables are jacket reactor temperature and feed modifier (tert-dodecylmercaptan) concentration. A simple in-line viscometrical method makes the in-line control of weight-average molecular weight in solution polymerization feasible, using independent conversion measurements from an in-line densitometer. Successful closed-loop servo and regulatory control results are obtained.