Skip to content
Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter August 30, 2009

Advanced Modelling for Investigating the Effects of Reactor Operation on Controlled Living Emulsion Polymerization

Vincent G Gomes, Ibrahem S Altarawneh and Mourtada H Srour

Accurate control of product properties through the manipulation of transfer agents can be of great benefit to industry in producing targeted polymeric materials. In this work we developed experimental protocols and mathematical models for understanding and characterising semi-batch emulsion polymerization in the presence of a xanthate-based transfer agent. Zero-one kinetics was employed with population balance equations to predict monomer conversion, molecular weight (MWD) and particle size (PSD) distributions in the presence of xanthate-based reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) agents. The effects of the transfer agent (AR), surfactant, initiator (KPS) and temperature were investigated. Monomer feed rate was found to strongly affect conversion, MWD and PSD. The polymerization rate (Rp), number average molecular weight (Mn) and particle size () decreased with increasing AR. Rp increased with increase in SDS and KPS; while with increase in temperature, Mn decreased, Rp increased and increased. With semi-batch mode, Mn and increased with monomer flow rate.

Published Online: 2009-8-30

©2011 Walter de Gruyter GmbH & Co. KG, Berlin/Boston