NMR studies of radical polymerization processes

Klumperman, Bert (2012-12)

Thesis (DSc)--Stellenbosch University, 2012.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Examples of the use of NMR spectroscopy in the study of radical polymerization processes have been described. The studies presented have made a significant contribution to the understanding of the fundamental mechanistic processes in these polymerization systems. It is pointed out that NMR in conventional radical polymerization is of limited use due to the concurrent occurrence of all elementary reactions (initiation, propagation and termination). Conversely, for living radical polymerization, NMR has great value. In that case, the elementary reactions are somewhat more restricted to specific times of the polymerization process. This allows for example the detailed study of the early stages of chain growth in Reversible Addition-­‐Fragmentation Chain Transfer (RAFT) mediated polymerization. Two different studies are described. The first is related to the early stages of RAFT-­‐mediated polymerization. A process for which we coined the name initialization was studied via in situ 1H NMR spectroscopy. It is shown that in many cases, there is a selective reaction that converts the original RAFT agent into its single monomer adduct. A few different examples and their mechanistic interpretation are discussed. It is also shown that NMR spectroscopy can be a valuable tool for the assessment of a RAFT agent in conjunction with a specific monomer and polymerization conditions. In the second study, 15N NMR, 31P NMR and 1H NMR are used for two different types of experiments. The first is a conventional radical copolymerization in which the growing chains are trapped by a 15N labeled nitroxide to yield a stable product. In the second experiment, a similar copolymerization is conducted under nitroxide-­‐mediated conditions. The nitroxide of choice contains phosphorous, which enables the quantification of the terminal monomer in the dormant chains. Each of the experiments individually provides interesting information on conventional radical copolymerization and nitroxide-­‐mediated copolymerization, respectively. Combination of the experimental data reveals an interesting discrepancy in the ratio of terminal monomer units in active chains and dormant chains. Although not unexpected, this result is interesting and useful from a mechanistic as well as a synthetic point of view. In terms of future perspectives, it is expected that the advanced analytical techniques as described here will remain crucial in polymer science. Present developments in radical polymerization, such as investigations into monomer sequence control, rely on accurate knowledge of kinetic and mechanistic details of elementary reactions. It is expected that such detailed studies will be a main challenge for the next decade of polymer research.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Voorbeelde van die gebruik van KMR-­‐spektroskopie in die studie van radikaalpolimerisasies word beskryf. Hierdie studies het ʼn beduidende bydrae gelewer tot die verstaan van die fundamentele meganistiese prosesse in hierdie polimerisasiesisteme. Dit het daarop gewys dat KMR beperkte gebruike het in konvensionele radikaalpolimerisasies as gevolg van die gelyktydige voorkoms van alle basiese reaksies (afsetting, voortsetting en beëindiging). Aan die anderkant het KMR groot waarde vir lewende radikaalpolimerisasie. In hierdie geval is die elementêre reaksies ietwat meer beperk tot spesifieke tye van die polimerisasieproses. Gedetailleerde studies kan byvoorbeeld van die vroeë stadiums van die kettinggroei in Omkeerbare Addisie-­‐Fragmentasie-­‐ KettingOordrag (OAFO)-­‐bemiddelde polimerisasie gedoen word. Twee verskillende studies is beskryf. Die eerste het betrekking op die vroeë stadiums van die OAFO-­‐bemiddelde polimerisasie. 'n Proses wat “inisialisering” genoem is, is bestudeer deur middel van in situ 1H KMR-­‐spektroskopie. Dit is bewys dat daar in baie gevalle 'n selektiewe reaksie is wat die oorspronklike OAFO-­‐agent in sy enkelmonomeeradduk verander voor polimerisasie. 'n Paar ander voorbeelde en hul meganistiese interpretasie is bespreek. Dit is ook bewys dat KMR-­‐spektroskopie 'n waardevolle hulpmiddel kan wees vir die assessering van 'n OAFO-­‐agent in samewerking met 'n spesifieke monomeer en polimerisasie toestande. In die tweede studie is 15N KMR, 31P KMR en 1H KMR gebruik vir twee verskillende tipes van die eksperiment. Die eerste is 'n konvensionele radikaalkopolimerisasie waarin die groeiende kettings vasgevang word deur 'n 15N-­‐gemerkte nitroksied om 'n stabiele produk te lewer. In die tweede eksperiment is 'n soortgelyke kopolimerisasie gedoen onder nitroksied-­‐ bemiddelde toestande. Die gekose nitroksied bevat fosfor wat die kwantifisering van die terminale monomeer in die dormante kettings moontlik maak. Elkeen van die individuele eksperimente lewer interessante inligting oor konvensionele radikale kopolimerisasie en nitroksied-­‐bemiddelde kopolimerisasie, onderskeidelik. ʼn Kombinasie van die eksperimentele data toon 'n interessante verskil aan in die verhouding van die terminale monomeereenhede in die aktiewe en sluimerende kettings. Alhoewel dit nie onverwags is nie, is die resultate interessant en van waarde vanuit 'n meganistiese-­‐ sowel as 'n sintetiese oogpunt. In terme van toekomstige perspektiewe word daar verwag dat gevorderde analitiese tegnieke soos hier beskryf, belangrik sal bly in polimeerwetenskap. Huidige ontwikkelinge in radikaalpolimerisasie, soos ondersoeke na die beheer van monomeervolgorde, maak staat op akkurate kennis van kinetiese en meganistiese besonderhede van die basiese reaksies. Daar word verwag dat sulke gedetailleerde studies ʼn uitdaging sal bied vir die volgende dekade van polimeernavorsing.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/71596
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