Document Type: Original research
Faculty of processing, Iran Polymer and Petrochemical Institute, 14977-13115, Tehran, Iran
In this work, the grafting of maleic anhydride onto two types of linear low density polyethylene with hexene-1 comonomer (LLDPE-H1) and butene-1 comonomer (LLDPE-B1), in the presence of styrene monomer (St) and dicumyl peroxide initiator (DCP) has been studied. The combined influences of MAH, St and DCP on the grafting efficiency via a melt reactive mixing process have been investigated using response surface methodology and the central cubic design has been employed for experimental design and data analysis. IR spectroscopy, contact angle measurements and adhesion test have been used to evaluate the extent of grafting reaction. The results showed that LLDPE-H1 with a 2.2% maximum grafting content showed more grafting content than the LLDPE-B1 (1.86%). This effect could be attributed to the type of comonomer in LLDPE-H1 which made it more prone to chain scission than LLDPE-B1, and a higher level of grafting was achieved. The gel content measurement showed that lower cross-linked structure was formed during the grafting process in the LLDP-H1 than that in the LLDPE-B1. The optimum conditions of maximum grafting and minimum gel content were statically investigated. The optimum percentage of grafting for LLDPE-H1 was 1.82% and it was 1.74% for LLDPE-B1, with the minimum gel content of 6.5% and 9%, respectively. It was found that the amount of grafted percentage was sensitive to the concentrations of the MAH, DCP, and St, while the extent of the gel content was more sensitive to the percentage of DCP.