Date of Award
Master of Science
Materials Science and Engineering
Michael R. Kessler
Polymers derived from bio-renewable resources are finding an increase in global demand. In addition, polymers with distinctive functionalities are required in certain advanced fields, such as aerospace and civil engineering. In an attempt to meet both these needs, the goal of this work aims to develop a range of bio-based thermosetting matrix polymers for potential applications in multifunctional composites. Ring-opening metathesis polymerization (ROMP), which recently has been explored as a powerful method in polymer chemistry, was employed as a unique pathway to polymerize agricultural oil-based reactants.
Specifically, a novel norbornyl-functionalized castor oil alcohol (NCA) was investigated to polymerize different cross-linking agents using ROMP. The effects of incorporating dicyclopentadiene (DCPD) and a norbornene-based crosslinker (CL) were systematically evaluated with respect to curing behavior and thermal mechanical properties of the polymers. Isothermal differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) was used to investigate the conversion during cure. Dynamic DSC scans at multiple heating rates revealed conversion-dependent activation energy by Ozawa-Flynn-Wall analysis. The glass transition temperature, storage modulus, and loss modulus for NCA/DCPD and NCA/CL copolymers with different cross-linking agent loading were compared using dynamic mechanical analysis. Cross-link density was examined to explain the very different dynamic mechanical behavior. Mechanical stress-strain curves were developed through tensile test, and thermal stability of the cross-linked polymers was evaluated by thermogravimetric analysis to further investigate the structure-property relationships in these systems.
Ding, Rui, "ROMP-based thermosetting polymers from modified castor oil with various cross-linking agents" (2012). Graduate Theses and Dissertations. 12934.