Plastic deformation of glassy polystyrene: A unified model of yield and the role of chain length

Authors


Abstract

A study was made of yield and plastic flow in glassy polystyrene. A range of 12 linear atactic polystyrenes was studied: monodisperse, bimodal blends, and a polydisperse commercial sample. Mn varied between 66,000 and 490,000 g/mol. These were given standardized thermal treatments and then subjected to uniaxial compression tests in the glassy state over the temperature range 40 to 95 °C and nominal strain-rates 10−4 to 10−3 s−1. Their constitutive responses were interpreted in terms of the physically based three-dimensional constitutive model for small or large deformations in amorphous polymers proposed earlier (Polymer 1995, 36, 3301–3312), including plastic strain-induced structural rejuvenation. In multimode form, the model captured closely both linear viscoelastic response and yield and plastic flow. When the reduction of Vogel temperature caused by chain ends was incorporated in the model, it predicted a fall in yield stress with reducing molecular length. This was also observed in experimental data, with the rate of fall approximately in agreement. The results provide further support for the model as a unifying framework for describing the physical properties of polymer glasses. © 2004 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Polym Sci Part B: Polym Phys 42: 2027–2040, 2004

Ancillary