The kinetics and the extent of side reactions of the anionic polymerization of silyl-protected 2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate, 2-(tert-butyldimethylsilyloxy)ethyl methacrylate (TBDMS-HEMA), in tetrahydrofuran (THF) were studied as a function of polymerization temperature. Lithium chloride was added in order to achieve a controlled polymerization. The results of polymerizations at various temperatures are compared with reported data for methyl methacrylate and tert-butyl methacrylate in THF. The activation energy for the studied monomer is lower compared to the other methacrylates. Gel permeation chromatography-viscosity studies show that poly(TBDMS-HEMA) exhibits a more wormlike structure in THF than other polymethacrylates, as indicated by a higher Mark-Houwink exponent, α = 1.025.
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