Abstract

The relationships between the properties and microstructures of two series of perfectly alternating bisphenol A-polycarbonate-polydimethylsiloxane block copolymers were studied. In the first series, the polycarbonate (PC) block length was kept constant while the block length of polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) was varied. The tensile properties of these block copolymers were found to be a function of composition. Dynamic mechanical properties measured as a function of temperature revealed the two-phase nature of these materials. Transmission electron micrographs showed that all samples had a sponge-like morphology independent of composition. The rheological maximum viscosity for the sample containing PC and PDMS blocks of equal molecular weight and extrudate swells increased with PC content. Takayamagi's mechanical coupling model was used to predict the maximum loss tangent at the glass transition temperature of PDMS using the known properties of pure components. The predictions agreed fairly well with the experimental results. In a second series of block copolymers, the block molecular weights of both PC and PDMS were varied to keep the composition constant. The tensile strength of these samples was found to increase with block molecular weights, except for the sample having the highest block molecular weights. The lower tensile strength of this material was attributed to its lamellar type morphology. Cold crystallization of PDMS blocks was found for samples having high PDMS block molecular weight (greater than 8000 g/mole). The Tg of PC blocks followed the Fox-Flory equation with a higher K value than expected. The PDMS content in PC domains was calculated to range from 11% for material of low block molecular weights to about 1.3% for high block molecular weight material.

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