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Polymers 2017, 9(1), 26; doi:10.3390/polym9010026

A Green Platform for Preparation of the Well-Defined Polyacrylonitrile: 60Co γ-ray Irradiation-Initiated RAFT Polymerization at Room Temperature

1
Suzhou Key Laboratory of Macromolecular Design and Precision Synthesis, Jiangsu Key Laboratory of Advanced Functional Polymer Design and Application, State and Local Joint Engineering Laboratory for Novel Functional Polymeric Materials, College of Chemistry, Chemical Engineering and Materials Science, Soochow University, Suzhou 215123, China
2
Faculty of Engineering, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, ON N2L 3G1, Canada
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Philipp Vana
Received: 9 December 2016 / Revised: 2 January 2017 / Accepted: 10 January 2017 / Published: 17 January 2017
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Abstract

60Co γ-ray irradiation-initiated reversible addition–fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization at room temperature with 2-cyanoprop-2-yl 1-dithionaphthalate (CPDN) as the chain transfer agent was first applied to acrylonitrile (AN) polymerization, providing a “green” platform for preparing polyacrylonitrile (PAN)-based carbon fibers using an environment-friendly energy source. Various effects of dose rate, molar ratio of the monomer to the chain transfer agent, monomer concentration and reaction time on the AN polymerization behaviors were performed to improve the controllability of molecular the weight and molecular weight distribution of the obtained PAN. The feature of the controlled polymerization was proven by the first-order kinetics, linear increase of the molecular weight with the monomer conversion and a successful chain-extension experiment. The molecular weight and molecular weight distribution of PAN were characterized by size exclusion chromatography (SEC). 1H NMR and Matrix assisted laser desorption ionization/time of flight mass spectra (MALDI-TOF-MS) confirmed the chain-end functionality of PAN, which also was supported by the successful chain-extension experiments of original PANs with acrylonitrile and styrene as the second monomers respectively. View Full-Text
Keywords: acrylonitrile; controlled polymerization; reversible addition–fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization; γ-ray irradiation acrylonitrile; controlled polymerization; reversible addition–fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization; γ-ray irradiation
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Zhang, S.; Yin, L.; Wang, J.; Zhang, W.; Zhang, L.; Zhu, X. A Green Platform for Preparation of the Well-Defined Polyacrylonitrile: 60Co γ-ray Irradiation-Initiated RAFT Polymerization at Room Temperature. Polymers 2017, 9, 26.

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