Polímeros: Ciência e Tecnologia
Polímeros: Ciência e Tecnologia
Original Article

Cationic polymerization of styrene using iron-containing ionic liquid catalysts in an aqueous dispersed medium

Gabriel Victor Simões Dutra; Weslany Silvério Neto; Pedro Henrique Hermes de Araújo; Claudia Sayer; Brenno Amaro da Silveira Neto; Fabricio Machado

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This work aims to study the cationic miniemulsion polymerization of styrene catalyzed by iron-containing imidazolium-based ionic liquids. The polystyrenes had very high number-average molar mass around 1300 kg mol-1 at 85 °C, molar-mass dispersity close to 2.0 and glass transition temperature higher than 102 °C with average particle diameter that remained practically unchanged during the reaction, indicating that the monomer droplets correspond to the polymerization locus. First-order kinetics up to a limit conversion, along with the increase in molar mass as the temperature decreases, styrene polymerization at low temperatures and catalyst inability to polymerize monomers that react exclusively via free radical and/or anionic polymerization, indicate the cationic nature of polymerization. 1H-NMR and 13C-NMR spectra suggested the formation of polystyrene, allowing for tacticity distribution quantification: 10% isotactic, 20% atactic and 70% syndiotactic configurations. TEM micrographs confirmed the formation of spherical polymer nanoparticles and the presence of catalysts in the polymer matrix.



high molar mass, ionic liquid catalysts, cationic polymerization, miniemulsion polymerization, styrene


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