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Living radical polymerization of hydroxyethyl methacrylate and its block copolymerization with poly(dimethyl siloxane) macroazoinitiator

Vargün, Elif
Hydrophilic poly(2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate), PHEMA, and hydrophobic poly(dimethyl siloxane), PDMS, segments containing copolymers have been widely used as a biomaterial. These amphiphilic copolymers also used as an emulsifying agent in polymer solutions and compatibilizer in polymer blends. In this case, solution polymerizations of HEMA by radiation, ATRP and RAFT methods were studied. The thermal degradation mechanism of PHEMA, which was prepared in aqueous solution by gamma radiation technique, was studied in detail. The DSC, TGA and Mass Spectroscopy analyses revealed that the degradation is linkage and depolymerization with a combination of monomer fragmentation. The ATRP of HEMA was performed with ethyl-2-bromoisobutyrate (EBriB) initiator and CuCl/bipyridine catalyst in MEK/1-propanol solvent mixture. Cu(II) complexes and PHEMA obtained via ATRP were characterized by UV-vis, FTIR and 1H-NMR analysis. The RAFT polymerization of HEMA with different [RAFT]/[AIBN] ratios were also investigated in three solvents (methyl ethylketone, ethyl acetate and toluene). The controlled polymerization of HEMA with the ratio of [RAFT]/ [AIBN]=18 at 80 oC in MEK and ethyl acetate, shows the first-order kinetic up to the nearly 40 % conversion Macroazoinitiator PDMS-MAI was synthesized from bifunctional PDMS and then copolymerized with MMA, EMA, HEMA and TMS-HEMA monomers Different characterization methods such as FTIR, 1H-NMR, solid state NMR, GPC, XPS, SEM, DSC, etc. have been used for the characterization of block copolymers. P(DMS-b-TMSHEMA) was converted to the P(DMS-b-HEMA) block copolymer by deprotection of TMS groups. The phase separated morphology was observed for the P(DMS-b-HEMA) copolymer, which was different from P(DMS-b-MMA) and P(DMS-b-EMA) copolymers.