Styrene is one of the most important monomers utilized in the synthesis of various polymers. Nevertheless, during distillation, storage, and transportation of ST, undesired polymer (i.e., UP) formation can take place. Thus, the control of undesired polymerization of styrene is a challenging issue facing industry. To tackle the mentioned issue, the antipolymer and antioxidant activity of stable nitroxide radicals (i.e., SNRs) and phenolics in styrene polymerization were studied by density functional theory (DFT) calculation and experimental approach. The electrophilicity index and growth percentage have been determined by DFT calculation and experimental approach, respectively. It is depicted that 2,6-di-tert-butyl-4-methoxyphenol (DTBMP) and 2,6-di-tert-butyl-4-methylphenol (BHT) from phenolics, and 4-hydroxy-2,2,6,6-tetramethyl piperidine 1-Oxyl (4-hydroxy-TEMPO) and 4-oxo-2,2,6,6-tetramethylpiperidine 1-Oxyl (4-oxo-TEMPO) from stable nitroxide radicals were the most effective inhibitors. Also, the growth percentage of DTMBP, BHT, 4-hydroxy-TEMPO, and 4-oxo-TEMPO after 4 h were 16.40, 42.50, 24.85, and 46.8, respectively. In addition, the conversion percentage of DTMBP, BHT, 4-hydroxy-TEMPO, and 4-oxo-TEMPO after 4 h were obtained to be 0.048, 0.111, 0.065, and 0.134, respectively. Furthermore, the synergistic effect of these inhibitors was investigated experimentally, indicating that DTMBP/4-hydroxy-TEMPO exerted the best synergistic effects on the inhibition of polymerization. The optimum inhibition effect was observed at the blend of 4-hydroxy-TEMPO (25 wt.%) and DTMBP (75 wt.%) corresponding to 6.8% polymer growth after 4 h.
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