Polymer and Materials Science
Wiley InterScience Backfile Collection 1832-2000
Chemistry and Pharmacology
Blends of polyethylene and polystyrene have been prepared to study the effect of the morphology on their crystallization characteristics since the polymers are known to phase separate. The polymer component present in least amount formed a dispersed phase of discrete spherical particles whose number and size altered with blend composition. However, close to 50% composition cylindrical rods of polyethylene dispersed in polystyrene were observed. With polyethylene in excess the kinetics of crystallization were insensitive to the morphology, but with polyethylene present as the dispersed phase they became dependent on the size and number of the spheres, and in particular on the nucleation density. When the number of spherical particles exceeded that of heterogeneous nuclei, larger supercoolings, and so presumably homogeneous nucleation, were required for crystallization to develop further. The degree of crystallization of the blends then became dependent on the temperature of crystallization rather than on time, and the isothermal crystallization appearing to be instantaneous.
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