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Coatings 2019, 9(2), 114; https://doi.org/10.3390/coatings9020114

Swap-Driven Self-Adhesion and Healing of Vitrimers

1
Department of Applied Physics, Eindhoven University of Technology, Postbus 513, NL-5600 MB Eindhoven, The Netherlands
2
Institute for Complex Molecular Systems, Eindhoven University of Technology, Postbus 513, NL-5600 MB Eindhoven, The Netherlands
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 16 January 2019 / Revised: 6 February 2019 / Accepted: 7 February 2019 / Published: 12 February 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Progress in Self-Healing Coatings)
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Abstract

Vitrimers are covalent network materials, comparable in structure to classical thermosets. Unlike normal thermosets, they possess a chemical bond swap mechanism that makes their structure dynamic and suitable for activated welding and even autonomous self-healing. The central question in designing such materials is the trade-off between autonomy and material stability: the swap mechanism facilitates the healing, but it also facilitates creep, which makes the perfectly stable self-healing solid a hard goal to reach. Here, we address this question for the case of self-healing vitrimers made from star polymers. Using coarse-grained molecular dynamics simulations, we studied the adhesion of two vitrimer samples and found that they bond together on timescales that are much shorter than the stress relaxation time. We showed that the swap mechanism allows the star polymers to diffuse through the material through coordinated swap events, but the healing process is much faster and does not depend on this mobility. View Full-Text
Keywords: self-healing; vitrimers; self-adhesion self-healing; vitrimers; self-adhesion
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Ciarella, S.; Ellenbroek, W.G. Swap-Driven Self-Adhesion and Healing of Vitrimers. Coatings 2019, 9, 114.

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