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Fire and Forget! One‐Shot Synthesis and Characterization of Block‐Like Statistical Terpolymers via Living Anionic Polymerization

Hutchings, Lian R., Brooks, Paul P., Shaw, Peter, Ross‐Gardner, Paul
Journal of polymer science 2019 v.57 no.3 pp. 382-394
composite polymers, copolymerization, glass transition temperature, industry, styrene
Diphenylethylene (DPE) is a monomer which has attracted significant interest from academia and industry both in terms of copolymerization kinetics and for the potential to extend and tune the range of glass transition temperatures accessible for DPE‐containing copolymers. DPE can undergo (co)polymerization with a variety of other monomers by living anionic polymerization but is incapable of forming a homopolymer due to steric hindrance. DPE, being a sterically bulky monomer, results in dramatic increases in the glass transition temperature (Tg) of resulting copolymers, with a perfectly alternating copolymer of styrene and DPE having a Tg of ~180 °C. Herein we report for the first time, the outcome of the statistical terpolymerization of butadiene, styrene, and DPE—a one‐pot, one‐shot, commercially scalable reaction using monomers of wide industrial importance. This extremely facile approach produces copolymers with a block‐like structure, which undergo microphase separation, possess a high Tg glassy “block” and are virtually indistinguishable from analogous block terpolymers made by the traditional sequential addition of monomers approach. © 2018 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J. Polym. Sci., Part A: Polym. Chem. 2019, 57, 382–394