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Open AccessArticle

Synthesis of High Molecular Weight Polyester Using in Situ Drying Method and Assessment of Water Vapor and Oxygen Barrier Properties

School of Packaging, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824-1223, USA
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Polymers 2018, 10(10), 1113; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym10101113
Received: 21 September 2018 / Revised: 6 October 2018 / Accepted: 7 October 2018 / Published: 9 October 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biodegradable and Biobased Polyesters)
The preparation of renewable polyesters with good barrier properties is highly desirable for the packaging industry. Herein we report the synthesis of high molecular weight polyesters via an innovative use of an in situ drying agent approach and the barrier properties of the films formed from these polyesters. High number average molecular weight (Mn) semiaromatic polyesters (PEs) were synthesized via alternating ring-opening copolymerization (ROCOP) of phthalic anhydride (PA) and cyclohexene oxide (CHO) using a salen chromium(III) complex in the presence of 4-(dimethylamino)pyridine (DMAP) cocatalyst. The use of a calcium hydride (drying agent) was found to enhance the number Mn of the synthesized PEs, which reached up to 31.2 ku. To test the barrier properties, PE films were prepared by solvent casting approach and their barrier properties were tested in comparison poly(lactic acid) films. The PE films showed significantly improved water vapor and oxygen barrier properties compared to the commercial poly(lactic acid) (PLA) film that suggests the potential use of these PEs in in the food packaging industry. View Full-Text
Keywords: polyesters; salen chromium(III) complex; alternating ring-opening copolymerization; food packaging polyesters; salen chromium(III) complex; alternating ring-opening copolymerization; food packaging
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MDPI and ACS Style

Cheng, S.; Khan, B.; Khan, F.; Rabnawaz, M. Synthesis of High Molecular Weight Polyester Using in Situ Drying Method and Assessment of Water Vapor and Oxygen Barrier Properties. Polymers 2018, 10, 1113.

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