Abstract: Shape memory polyurethanes (SMPUs) are typically synthesized using polyols of low molecular weight (MW~2,000 g/mol) as it is believed that the high density of cross-links in these low molecular weight polyols are essential for high mechanical strength and good shape memory effect. In this study, polyethylene glycol (PEG-6000) with MW ~6000 g/mol as the soft segment and diisocyanate as the hard segment were used to synthesize SMPUs, and the results were compared with the SMPUs with polycaprolactone PCL-2000. The study revealed that although the PEG-6000-based SMPUs have lower maximum elongations at break (425%) and recovery stresses than those of PCL-based SMPUs, they have much better recovery ratios (up to 98%) and shape fixity (up to 95%), hence better shape memory effect. Furthermore, PEG-based SMPUs showed a much shorter actuation time of < 10 s for up to 90% shape recovery compared to typical actuation times of tens of seconds to a few minutes for common SMPUs, demonstrated their great potential for applications in microsystems and other engineering components.
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Ahmad, M.; Xu, B.; Purnawali, H.; Fu, Y.; Huang, W.; Miraftab, M.; Luo, J. High Performance Shape Memory Polyurethane Synthesized with High Molecular Weight Polyol as the Soft Segment. Appl. Sci. 2012, 2, 535-548.
Ahmad M, Xu B, Purnawali H, Fu Y, Huang W, Miraftab M, Luo J. High Performance Shape Memory Polyurethane Synthesized with High Molecular Weight Polyol as the Soft Segment. Applied Sciences. 2012; 2(2):535-548.
Ahmad, Manzoor; Xu, Bin; Purnawali, Hendra; Fu, Yongqing; Huang, Weimin; Miraftab, Mohsen; Luo, Jikui. 2012. "High Performance Shape Memory Polyurethane Synthesized with High Molecular Weight Polyol as the Soft Segment." Appl. Sci. 2, no. 2: 535-548.