Swelling-assisted Modification of Poly(ethylene terephthalate) by Methacrylic Acid
Journal of Polymer Science: Part A, Polymer Chemistry
When a poly(ethylene terephthalate), PET, film is heated in an aqueous solution of methacrylic acid in the presence of hydrogen peroxide as an initiator, it is found that the weight of the film is increased. The amount of methacrylic acid that may be added onto the film is dependent upon the concentration of the monomer, the initiator, and the temperature at which the reaction occurs. Pretreatment of the film with 1,1,2,2,tetrachloroethane causes swelling and the amount of add‐on is increased as the swelling level increases. Methacrylic‐acid‐modified PET films hydrolyze at room temperature in aqueous sodium hydroxide; the rate of hydrolysis is dependent upon the amount of add‐on and the concentration of the base. This procedure leads to a chemically induced blend of polymethacrylic acid and poly(ethylene terephthalate), and grafting of the monomer onto the polymer film does not occur.