Rheology and Processing of Polymer Materials

A special issue of Polymers (ISSN 2073-4360). This special issue belongs to the section "Polymer Processing and Engineering".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 15 June 2024 | Viewed by 15726

Special Issue Editor

School of Materials and Chemistry (SMC), University of Shanghai for Science and Technology, Shanghai, China
Interests: toughening; polymer composite; polymer processing; reversible crosslinking; rubber; polymer crystallization; rheological behavior; structure-property relationships; conductive polymer; biodegradable polymers

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Rheology is the science of studying the flow and deformation of materials and it is also the basic science of material processing and preparation. It is recognized as a fundamental research method for understanding the structure and properties of materials and helps guide polymer processing. Almost all polymer materials must undergo processing before they can be applied. Polymer processing can be attributed to two aspects: material modification and product molding. How to finely control the processing process to achieve multi-scale and multi-level structure is the main direction of modern processing technology for polymers.

This Special Issue will cover but will not be limited to the blending, copolymerization, chemical modification, molding and processes of polymer materials, which includes research on rheological behavior, molecular structure, thermal analysis, crystallization behavior, mechanical properties, phase morphology, interface interaction, etc., through establishing the multi-scale structure–morphology–property relationship of polymer composite materials, studying the basic scientific issues and guiding the development and application of high-performance new materials.

Dr. Biwei Qiu
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Polymers is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2700 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • rheology
  • crystallization
  • polymer composite
  • polymer processing
  • mechanical properties
  • toughness

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

15 pages, 680 KiB  
Article
Non-Stick Length of Polymer–Polymer Interfaces under Small-Amplitude Oscillatory Shear Measurement
by Yasuya Nakayama
Polymers 2024, 16(1), 77; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym16010077 - 26 Dec 2023
Viewed by 660
Abstract
Interfaces in soft materials often exhibit deviation from non-slip/stick response and play a determining role in the rheological response of the overall system. We discuss detection techniques for the excess interface rheology using small-amplitude oscillatory shear (SAOS) measurements. A stacked bilayer of different [...] Read more.
Interfaces in soft materials often exhibit deviation from non-slip/stick response and play a determining role in the rheological response of the overall system. We discuss detection techniques for the excess interface rheology using small-amplitude oscillatory shear (SAOS) measurements. A stacked bilayer of different polymers is sheared parallel to the interface and the dynamic shear response is measured. Deviation of the bilayer shear modulus from the superposition of the shear moduli of the component layers is analysed. Furthermore, we introduce a frequency-dependent non-stick length based on the bilayer SAOS response to characterize the excess interface rheology. We observe an approximate stick response in the interface in bilayers composed of the chemically same monomer as well as an apparent slip in the interface between immiscible polymers. The results suggest that the proposed non-stick length in SAOS is capable of detecting the apparent interfacial slip. The non-stick length in SAOS is readily applicable to other complex interfaces of different soft materials and offers a convenient tool to characterize the excess interface rheology. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Rheology and Processing of Polymer Materials)
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23 pages, 7351 KiB  
Article
Compounding, Rheology and Numerical Simulation of Highly Filled Graphite Compounds for Potential Fuel Cell Applications
by Alptekin Celik, Fabian Willems, Mustafa Tüzün, Svetlana Marinova, Johannes Heyn, Markus Fiedler and Christian Bonten
Polymers 2023, 15(12), 2589; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15122589 - 6 Jun 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1355
Abstract
Highly filled plastics may offer a suitable solution within the production process for bipolar plates. However, the compounding of conductive additives and the homogeneous mixing of the plastic melt, as well as the accurate prediction of the material behavior, pose a major challenge [...] Read more.
Highly filled plastics may offer a suitable solution within the production process for bipolar plates. However, the compounding of conductive additives and the homogeneous mixing of the plastic melt, as well as the accurate prediction of the material behavior, pose a major challenge for polymer engineers. To support the engineering design process of compounding by twin-screw extruders, this present study offers a method to evaluate the achievable mixing quality based on numerical flow simulations. For this purpose, graphite compounds with a filling content of up to 87 wt.-% were successfully produced and characterized rheologically. Based on a particle tracking method, improved element configurations were found for twin-screw compounding. Furthermore, a method to characterize the wall slip ratios of the compounded material system with different filler content is presented, since highly filled material systems often tend to wall slip during processing, which could have a very large influence on accurate prediction. Numerical simulations of the high capillary rheometer were conducted to predict the pressure loss in the capillary. The simulation results show a good agreement and were experimentally validated. In contrast to the expectation, higher filler grades showed only a lower wall slip than compounds with a low graphite content. Despite occurring wall slip effects, the developed flow simulation for the design of slit dies can provide a good prediction for both low and high filling ratios of the graphite compounds. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Rheology and Processing of Polymer Materials)
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14 pages, 3833 KiB  
Article
Environmentally Friendly and Broad–Spectrum Antibacterial Poly(hexamethylene guanidine)–Modified Polypropylene and Its Antifouling Application
by Biwei Qiu, Meng Wang, Wenwen Yu, Shouhu Li, Wenyang Zhang, Shuting Wang and Jiangao Shi
Polymers 2023, 15(6), 1521; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15061521 - 19 Mar 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1683
Abstract
Biological fouling is one of the main reasons that limits the application of traditional polypropylene (PP) fishing nets in aquaculture. Here, a new environmentally friendly and broad–spectrum antibacterial agent called cationic poly(hexamethylene guanidine) (PHMG) was grafted onto PP molecular chains via permanent chemical [...] Read more.
Biological fouling is one of the main reasons that limits the application of traditional polypropylene (PP) fishing nets in aquaculture. Here, a new environmentally friendly and broad–spectrum antibacterial agent called cationic poly(hexamethylene guanidine) (PHMG) was grafted onto PP molecular chains via permanent chemical bonding to inhibit the biological fouling. The antibacterial monofilaments were obtained by blending different contents of PP–g–PHMG with PP by melt spinning. FTIR results found PHMG to be stably present in the mixed monofilaments after high–temperature melt spinning molding. The crystallinity, relaxation behavior, mechanical properties, water absorptivity, and antibacterial and antifouling efficiencies of the PP–g–PHMG/PP blends were strongly dependent on PP–g–PHMG. The crystallinity increased with increasing PP–g–PHMG content. Adding PP–g–PHMG improved the breaking strength, knotting strength, and elongation at the break for all ratios of PP–g–PHMG/PP blends. However, the water absorption caused by PHMG is low, ranging between 2.48% and 3.45% for the PP–g–PHMG/PP monofilaments. The monofilaments showed excellent nonleaching antimicrobial activities against Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli. The electrostatic adsorption of the negatively charged bacteria and the destruction of their cell membrane allowed the growth inhibition to reach 99.69% with a PP–g–PHMG content of 40%. The marine fish farming experiment also showed a long–term antifouling effect. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Rheology and Processing of Polymer Materials)
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12 pages, 28057 KiB  
Article
Dispersion Homogeneity of Silicon Anode Slurries with Various Binders for Li-Ion Battery Anode Coating
by Bogyoung Kim, Yeeun Song, Byungwook Youn and Doojin Lee
Polymers 2023, 15(5), 1152; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15051152 - 24 Feb 2023
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 5446
Abstract
We aimed to determine the relationship between surface chemistry and the rheological properties of silicon anode slurries in lithium-ion batteries. To accomplish this, we investigated the use of various binders such as PAA, CMC/SBR, and chitosan as a means to control particle aggregation [...] Read more.
We aimed to determine the relationship between surface chemistry and the rheological properties of silicon anode slurries in lithium-ion batteries. To accomplish this, we investigated the use of various binders such as PAA, CMC/SBR, and chitosan as a means to control particle aggregation and improve the flowability and homogeneity of the slurry. Additionally, we utilized zeta potential analysis to examine the electrostatic stability of the silicon particles in the presence of different binders, and the results indicated that the conformations of the binders on the silicon particles can be influenced by both neutralization and the pH conditions. Furthermore, we found that the zeta potential values served as a useful metric for evaluating binder adsorption and particle dispersion in the solution. We also conducted three-interval thixotropic tests (3ITTs) to examine the structural deformation and recovery characteristics of the slurry, and the results demonstrated that these properties vary depending on the strain intervals, pH conditions, and chosen binder. Overall, this study emphasized the importance of taking into account surface chemistry, neutralization, and pH conditions when assessing the rheological properties of the slurry and coating quality for lithium-ion batteries. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Rheology and Processing of Polymer Materials)
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22 pages, 8978 KiB  
Article
Peroxide-Based Crosslinking of Solid Silicone Rubber, Part I: Insights into the Influence of Dicumylperoxide Concentration on the Curing Kinetics and Thermodynamics Determined by a Rheological Approach
by Maurício Azevedo, Anna-Maria Monks, Roman C. Kerschbaumer, Sandra Schlögl and Clemens Holzer
Polymers 2022, 14(20), 4404; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym14204404 - 18 Oct 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2998
Abstract
Predicting the curing behaviour of industrially employed elastomeric compounds under typical processing conditions in a reliable and scientifically driven way is important for rubber processing simulation routines, such as injection moulding. Herein, a rubber process analyser was employed to study the crosslinking kinetics [...] Read more.
Predicting the curing behaviour of industrially employed elastomeric compounds under typical processing conditions in a reliable and scientifically driven way is important for rubber processing simulation routines, such as injection moulding. Herein, a rubber process analyser was employed to study the crosslinking kinetics of solid silicone rubber based on the concentration of dicumylperoxide. A model was proposed to describe the optimal cure time variation with peroxide concentration and temperature, based on the analysis of processing parameters applying kinetic and thermodynamic judgments. Additionally, the conversion rate was described with the aid of a phenomenological model, and the effect of dicumylperoxide concentration on the final crosslink state was investigated using kinetic and thermodynamic explanations. Optimal curing time was affected both by temperature and dicumylperoxide concentration. However, the effects were less pronounced for high temperatures (>170 C) and high concentrations (>0.70 phr). A limit on the crosslink state was detected, meaning that the dicumylperoxide capacity to crosslink the silicone network is restricted by the curing mechanism. Curing restrictions were presumed to be primarily thermodynamic, based on the proton abstraction mechanism that drives the crosslinking reaction. In addition to providing more realistic crosslinking models for rubber injection moulding simulation routines, the results of this study may also explain the chemical behaviour of organic peroxides widely used for silicone crosslinking. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Rheology and Processing of Polymer Materials)
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16 pages, 3883 KiB  
Article
Rheological Properties and Melt Spinning Application of Controlled-Rheology Polypropylenes via Pilot-Scale Reactive Extrusion
by Ho Suk Ji, Geunyeop Park and Hyun Wook Jung
Polymers 2022, 14(15), 3226; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym14153226 - 8 Aug 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2756
Abstract
Based on pilot-scale twin-screw reactive extrusion, the structural and rheological properties of controlled-rheology polypropylenes (CR-PPs) are investigated, where the effects of peroxide content and extrusion conditions such as screw configuration, extrusion temperature, and screw speed are prioritized. The active chain cleavage reaction by [...] Read more.
Based on pilot-scale twin-screw reactive extrusion, the structural and rheological properties of controlled-rheology polypropylenes (CR-PPs) are investigated, where the effects of peroxide content and extrusion conditions such as screw configuration, extrusion temperature, and screw speed are prioritized. The active chain cleavage reaction by a small peroxide content of less than 600 ppm inside the extruder gradually increases the melt index and narrows the molecular weight distribution of CR-PPs, thereby affording favorable properties that are applicable to the fiber spinning process. The mechanical properties of CR-PPs are slightly degraded owing to the generation of unsaturated chain ends during the reactive extrusion, which suppresses crystal growth. Under all extrusion conditions, the chain scission and thermal degradation of polypropylene samples occur actively in the harsh twin-screw extruder compared with those in the mild twin-screw extruder. Finally, it is confirmed that CR-PPs can be suitably applied to the melt-spinning process for staple fiber production, thereby guaranteeing a more stable spinning process window against draw resonance instability. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Rheology and Processing of Polymer Materials)
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