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Reversible addition–fragmentation transfer (RAFT) copolymerization of methyl methacrylate and styrene in miniemulsion

Authors

  • Yingwu Luo,

    Corresponding author
    1. Zhejiang University, The Union State Key Laboratory of Chemical Engineering, Polymer Reaction Engineering Division, Hangzhou, 310027, China
    • Zhejiang University, The Union State Key Laboratory of Chemical Engineering, Polymer Reaction Engineering Division, Hangzhou, 310027, China
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  • Xinzhi Liu

    1. Zhejiang University, The Union State Key Laboratory of Chemical Engineering, Polymer Reaction Engineering Division, Hangzhou, 310027, China
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Abstract

In the reversible addition–fragmentation transfer (RAFT) copolymerization of two monomers, even with the simple terminal model, there are two kinds of macroradical and two kinds of polymeric RAFT agent with different R groups. Because the structure of the R group could exert a significant influence on the RAFT process, RAFT copolymerization may behave differently from RAFT homopolymerization. The RAFT copolymerization of methyl methacrylate (MMA) and styrene (St) in miniemulsion was investigated. The performance of the RAFT copolymerization of MMA/St in miniemulsion was found to be dependent on the feed monomer compositions. When St is dominant in the feed monomer composition, RAFT copolymerization is well controlled in the whole range of monomer conversion. However, when MMA is dominant, RAFT copolymerization may be, in some cases, out of control in the late stage of copolymerization, and characterized by a fast increase in the polydispersity index (PDI). The RAFT process was found to have little influence on composition evolution during copolymerization. The synthesis of the well-defined gradient copolymers and poly[St-b-(St-co-MMA)] block copolymer by RAFT miniemulsion copolymerization was also demonstrated. © 2004 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Polym Sci Part A: Polym Chem 42: 6248–6258, 2004

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