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Synthesis and characterization of rubbery highly fluorinated siloxane–imide segmented copolymers


Correspondence to: Mohamed Krea, Laboratoire Matériaux et Environnement, Université de Médéa, Ain d'Heb, 26001 Medea, Algeria. E-mail:,


The synthesis and characterization of a series of poly(siloxane–imide) block (or segmented) copolymers obtained by copolymerization of amine-terminated polydimethylsiloxane with fluorinated aromatic compounds containing anhydride and amine functionality are reported. New fluorinated block copolymers have been synthesized to obtain organophilic polyimides potentially interesting for molecular membrane separations. The new aspects of this work relative to the literature are (1) a comparison of solution and solid-state approaches in the imidization step to generate the target poly(siloxane–imide) copolymers and (2) exploration of new compositions involving fluorinated aromatic polymers derived from added diamine compounds. It is shown that the copolymer properties can be tailored from glassy to rubbery materials by varying the amount and the type of oligosiloxane used; the transition between glassy and rubbery properties is characterized at a siloxane content of 60 wt%. As a main result, it is shown that the solid-state approach for inducing the cyclo-imidization step is the more efficient one for synthesizing polymers with good mechanical properties, when the amount of siloxane block is increased in the copolymer series. Physical and chemical methods (thermogravimetric analysis, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, viscosity measurements) were used to characterize the copolymer properties obtained according to the two different synthesis routes. The obtained siloxane–imide copolymers are well soluble in a large variety of moderately polar solvents and exhibit very good thermal stability up to 400 °C. Hence the prepared copolyimides would seem to be promising candidates as organophilic membranes as well as gas permeation membranes. © 2012 Society of Chemical Industry