Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg

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Superelastic polymers

General Information

<p align="justify">Superelastic polymers are thermoplastic elastomers based on novel molecular architectures. They are characterised by very high elongation at break (partly more than 1500%) with simultaneously very low residual strains compared to commercially available polymers. In contrast to conventional, chemically crosslinked elastomers the superelastic polymers can be thermoplastically processed, due to their physical crosslinks. Furthermore, they exhibit high deformation energies as well as excellent mechanical damping. All these special mechanical characteristics can be used to open-up new fields of application such as in the area of acoustic membranes and medical technology. More recently, it has been considered to use the electrostrictive properties of super-elastic polyisoprene-based polymers for applications in the field of electrostrictive actuators and sensors. Within this key topic, the relationship between molecular structure, process parameters, the morphology and the elastomeric material behaviour of super-elastic polymers are investigated and optimized with regard potential applications.</p>

Hysteresis-behaviour of a superelastic multigraft-block copolymer (Click to enlarge image)

Hysteresis-behaviour of a superelastic multigraft-block copolymer (Click to enlarge image)

Hysteresis-behaviour of a superelastic multigraft-block copolymer (Click to enlarge figure)

Research and development

  • Influence of the molecular architecture (number and functionality of the junction points) on morphology and mechanics
  • Technological influences on the morphology and the mechanical property-profile
  • Modelling of the mechanical behaviour

Selected Publications

R. Schlegel, D. Wilkin, Y. Duan, R. Weidisch, G. Heinrich, D. Uhrig,  J.W. Mays, H. Iatrou, N. Hadjichristidis: Stress softening of  multigraft copolymers.    Polymer 2009, 50 (26), 6297-6304.

M.  Thunga, R. Schlegel, U. Staudinger, Y. Duan, R. Weidisch, G. Heinrich,  J. Mays, N. Hadjichristidis: Thermoplastic elastomers on the basis of  multigraft and block-double-graft copolymers and electron  beam irradiation.    Kautschuk Gummi Kunststoffe, 2008, 11, 597-605.

Y.  Duan, E. Rettler, K. Schneider, R. Schlegel, M. Thunga, R. Weidisch, H.  W. Siesler, M. Stamm, J. W. Mays, N. Hadjichristidis: Deformation  Behavior of Sphere-Forming Trifunctional Multigraft Copolymer   . Macromolecules  2008, 41, 4565-4568.

U. Staudinger, R. Schlegel, R.  Weidisch, J. Fritzsche, M. Klüppel, G. Heinrich, Jimmy W. Mays, D.  Uhrig, N. Hadjichristidis: Interpretation of hysteresis behaviour of  PI–PS multigraft copolymers by adapting to the dynamic flocculation  model.    European Polymer Journal, Volume 44, Issue 11, November  2008, Pages 3790-3796.