Fractionation process in TREF systems: Validation of thermodynamic model and calculation procedure by Raman LAM studies

Authors

  • J. Pablo Tomba,

    1. Instituto de Investigaciones en Ciencia y Tecnología de Materiales (INTEMA) (UNMdP-CONICET),Facultad de Ingeniería, Universidad Nacional de Mar del Plata, 7600 Mar del Plata, Argentina
    2. Departamento de Ingeniería Química, Facultad de Ingeniería, Universidad Nacional de Mar del Plata,7600 Mar del Plata, Argentina
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  • José M. Carella,

    Corresponding author
    1. Instituto de Investigaciones en Ciencia y Tecnología de Materiales (INTEMA) (UNMdP-CONICET),Facultad de Ingeniería, Universidad Nacional de Mar del Plata, 7600 Mar del Plata, Argentina
    2. Departamento de Ingeniería en Materiales, Facultad de Ingeniería, Universidad Nacional de Mar del Plata,7600 Mar del Plata, Argentina
    • Instituto de Investigaciones en Ciencia y Tecnología de Materiales (INTEMA) (UNMdP-CONICET),Facultad de Ingeniería, Universidad Nacional de Mar del Plata, 7600 Mar del Plata, Argentina
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  • Jośe M. Pastor

    1. Departamento de Física de la Materia Condensada, Escuela Técnica Superior de Ingenieros Industriales,Universidad de Valladolid, 47011 Valladolid, Spain
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Abstract

In this paper, possible sources for the unexpected distributions of crystalline sequence lengths calculated from temperature rising elution fractionation (TREF) calibration experiments, as reported in a previous work, are investigated. With this aim, chain folding and cocrystalization phenomena were explored in the conditions of crystallization as used for TREF or crystallization analysis fractionation (CRYSTAF). Slow crystallizations were performed from xylene solutions of model low molecular weight ethylene homopolymers with narrow molecular weight distributions. The same experiments were performed with homopolymers having narrow molecular weight distributions and with blends having wide molecular weight distributions. The resulting distributions of the lengths of crystalline methylene sequences were directly studied by Raman in the so-called longitudinal acoustic mode (LAM) and by DSC. For ethylene homopolymers with molecular weights below 2000 g/mol, the results from Raman LAM indicate that slow crystallization in TREF or CRYSTAF systems occurs in the extended-chain mode. For higher molecular weights, evidence of chain folding was found. In the case of blends, independent crystallization was observed for each molecular weight when the molecular weight ranges used for the blends are relatively narrow. Cocrystallization was observed when this range was increased. Overall, these results strongly support the inverse technique calculation procedure developed by our group for the calculation of distributions of lengths of crystallizable sequences from TREF spectra. In this context, the results confirm that the unexpected crystallizable sequence lengths found in our previous work really exist and can be associated to chain folding or cocrystallization phenomena. © 2005 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Polym Sci Part B: Polym Phys 43: 3083–3092, 2005

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