Photoinduced Polymerization of Eugenol-Derived Methacrylates (open access)

Biobased monomers have been used to replace their petroleum counterparts in the synthesis of polymers that are aimed at different applications. However, environmentally friendly polymerization processes are also essential to guarantee greener materials. Thus, photoinduced polymerization, which is low-energy consuming and solvent-free, rises as a suitable option. In this work, eugenol-, isoeugenol-, and dihydroeugenol-derived methacrylates are employed in radical
photopolymerization to produce biobased polymers. The polymerization is monitored in the absence and presence of a photoinitiator and under air or protected from air, using Real-Time Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy. The polymerization rate of the methacrylate double bonds was affected by the presence and reactivity of the allyl and propenyl groups in the eugenol- and isoeugenol-derived methacrylates, respectively. These groups are involved in radical addition, degradative chain transfer,
and termination reactions, yielding crosslinked polymers. The materials, in the form of films, are characterized by differential scanning calorimetry, thermogravimetric, and contact angle analyses.

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