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Polymers 2017, 9(9), 432;

Effect of Graphene Oxide on the Reaction Kinetics of Methyl Methacrylate In Situ Radical Polymerization via the Bulk or Solution Technique

Laboratory of Polymer Chemistry and Technology, Department of Chemistry, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, 541 24 Thessaloniki, Greece
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Received: 31 July 2017 / Revised: 27 August 2017 / Accepted: 5 September 2017 / Published: 8 September 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Graphene-Polymer Composites)
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The synthesis of nanocomposite materials based on poly(methyl methacrylate) and graphene oxide (GO) is presented using the in situ polymerization technique, starting from methyl methacrylate, graphite oxide, and an initiator, and carried out either with (solution) or without (bulk) in the presence of a suitable solvent. Reaction kinetics was followed gravimetrically and the appropriate characterization of the products took place using several experimental techniques. X-ray diffraction (XRD) data showed that graphite oxide had been transformed to graphene oxide during polymerization, whereas FTIR spectra revealed no significant interactions between the polymer matrix and GO. It appears that during polymerization, the initiator efficiency was reduced by the presence of GO, resulting in a reduction of the reaction rate and a slight increase in the average molecular weight of the polymer formed, measured by gel permeation chromatography (GPC), along with an increase in the glass transition temperature obtained from differential scanning calorimetry (DSC). The presence of the solvent results in the suppression of the gel-effect in the reaction rate curves, the synthesis of polymers with lower average molecular weights and polydispersities of the Molecular Weight Distribution, and lower glass transition temperatures. Finally, from thermogravimetric analysis (TG), it was verified that the presence of GO slightly enhances the thermal stability of the nano-hybrids formed. View Full-Text
Keywords: PMMA; graphene oxide; polymerization kinetics; bulk; solution PMMA; graphene oxide; polymerization kinetics; bulk; solution

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Tsagkalias, I.S.; Manios, T.K.; Achilias, D.S. Effect of Graphene Oxide on the Reaction Kinetics of Methyl Methacrylate In Situ Radical Polymerization via the Bulk or Solution Technique. Polymers 2017, 9, 432.

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