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Open AccessArticle

Balanced Viscoelastic Properties of Pressure Sensitive Adhesives Made with Thermoplastic Polyurethanes Blends

1
Adhesion and Adhesives Laboratory, University of Alicante, 03080 Alicante, Spain
2
National University of Tucumán, San Miguel de Tucumán, Tucumán T4000, Argentina
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Polymers 2019, 11(10), 1608; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym11101608
Received: 24 August 2019 / Revised: 26 September 2019 / Accepted: 30 September 2019 / Published: 3 October 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Polymer Processing and Surfaces)
Pressure sensitive adhesives made with blends of thermoplastic polyurethanes (TPUs PSAs) with satisfactory tack, cohesion, and adhesion have been developed. A simple procedure consisting of the physical blending of methyl ethyl ketone (MEK) solutions of two thermoplastic polyurethanes (TPUs) with very different properties—TPU1 and TPU2—was used, and two different blending procedures have been employed. The TPUs were characterized by infra-red spectroscopy in attenuated total reflectance mode (ATR-IR spectroscopy), differential scanning calorimetry, thermal gravimetric analysis, and plate-plate rheology (temperature and frequency sweeps). The TPUs PSAs were characterized by tack measurement, creep test, and the 180° peel test at 25 °C. The procedure for preparing the blends of the TPUs determined differently their viscoelastic properties, and the properties of the TPUs PSAs as well, the blending of separate MEK solutions of the two TPUs imparted higher tack and 180° peel strength than the blending of the two TPUs in MEK. TPU1 + TPU2 blends showed somewhat similar contributions of the free and hydrogen-bonded urethane groups and they had an almost similar degree of phase separation, irrespective of the composition of the blend. Two main thermal decompositions at 308–317 °C due to the urethane hard domains and another at 363–373 °C due to the soft domains could be distinguished in the TPU1 + TPU2 blends, the weight loss of the hard domains increased and the one of the soft domains decreased by increasing the amount of TPU2 in the blends. The storage moduli of the TPU1 + TPU2 blends were similar for temperatures lower than 20 °C and the moduli at the cross over of the moduli were lower than in the parent TPUs. The improved properties of the TPU1 + TPU2 blends derived from the creation of a higher number of hydrogen bonds upon removal of the MEK solvent, which lead to a lower degree of phase separation between the soft and the hard domains than in the parent TPUs. As a consequence, the properties of the TPU1 + TPU2 PSAs were improved because good tack, high 180° peel strength, and sufficient cohesion were obtained, particularly in 70 wt% TPU1 + 30 wt% TPU2 PSA. View Full-Text
Keywords: thermoplastic polyurethanes blends; pressure sensitive adhesives; viscoelastic properties; adhesion properties; tack; creep; cohesion properties thermoplastic polyurethanes blends; pressure sensitive adhesives; viscoelastic properties; adhesion properties; tack; creep; cohesion properties
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MDPI and ACS Style

Fuensanta, M.; Vallino-Moyano, M.A.; Martín-Martínez, J.M. Balanced Viscoelastic Properties of Pressure Sensitive Adhesives Made with Thermoplastic Polyurethanes Blends. Polymers 2019, 11, 1608.

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