Effect of Structure on Physical Properties of Polymers.
Final rept. 1 Jan 76-31 Dec 79,
MASSACHUSETTS UNIV AMHERST DEPT OF POLYMER SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING
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The overall objective of this research program has been to investigate the physical nature of macromolecular systems as a function of the chemical and stereochemical structure of the macromolecule. A potential improvement in important facets of polymer properties was an underlying premise in the design and execution of the research. The work performed included investigations of the behavior of polymers in solution, as well as in the solid state and was accompanied by a program of theoretical studies to complement the experimental work. One focus of the research was the area of polymer-polymer interactions in binary blends, in which factors influencing compatibility, i.e., mutual solubility, were systematically investigated by a number of thermodynamic techniques. Heats of polymer mixing were obtained for selected systems and shown to be useful in predicting phase behavior otherwise obscured by non-equilibrium effects. The latter were also investigated theoretically in studies of the effect of domain size and composition on glass transition temperatures and allied phenomena. Another area of research concerned the physical properties of model epoxy network systems, and in particular, the effect of water on these properties. A characteristic of cross-linked polymers is their ready plasticization by relatively small amounts of low molecular weight materials and the basis of this observation has been explained on a thermodynamic basis. Solution properties of polymers were studied by means of quasi-elastic light scattering.
- Polymer Chemistry
- Atomic and Molecular Physics and Spectroscopy