Polymerization reactions and processes. Homogeneous and heterogeneous (emulsion) kinetics of free radical polymerization. Product characterization in terms of distributions of molecular weight, chain composition and chain sequences. Design of homo- and co-polymerization processes for specific product characteristics. Post treatment of polymer colloids. Kinetics and design of aggregation processes.
Introduce the students to the design of polymerization reactors for the production of polymers with molecular characteristics suitably tuned for specific applications. This includes the post-treatment of polymer latexes and the analysis of their colloidal behavior.
The aim of the course is to provide the tools needed for the understanding of the fundamental processes and the design of the industrial units involved in the production of polymeric materials and in the post-treatment of polymer colloids. In particular, the following topics are discussed: Physico-chemical characterization of polymers and description of the polymerization processes. Kinetics of free-radical polymerization and use of population balance models. Production of homo- and co-polymers with controlled characteristics in terms of molecular weight distribution and chain composition distribution. Living polymerizations. Design of polymerization reactors and the thermal runaway problem. Kinetics and control of emulsion polymerization. The radical segregation problem. Surfactants and colloidal stability. Aggregation kinetics and aggregate structure in conditions of diffusion and reaction limited aggregation. The role of shear conditions on aggregation and breackage kinetics and on the aggregate structure. Modeling and design of colloid aggregation processes.
Skripts are available on the 'Polymerization Reaction and Colloid Engineering' web page of the Morbidelli-group, vide the given link for details.
R.J. Hunter, Foundations of Colloid Science, Oxford University Press, 2nd edition, 2001 D. Ramkrishna, Population Balances, Academic Press, 2000