Modeling of Free Radical Polymerization of Azobenzene-based Linear Polymers


Modeling of free radical polymerizations of the liquid-crystalline monomer 6-[4-(4-heptyloxyphenylazo)phenoxy]hexylacrylate using the PREDICI software package is reported. The model accounts for all elemental reactions that were identified to be important for radical polymerizations of acrylate-type monomers. On the basis of butyl acrylate kinetic data a remarkable agreement between number average molar masses from modelling (Mn,sim) and from experiments (Mn,exp) is observed: Mn,sim = 17800 g·mol−1 and Mn,exp = 17400 g·mol−1. Similarly, dispersity values of 1.8 and 1.6 were determined via modelling and experiments, respectively. It is shown that the assumption of butyl acrylate kinetics provides a reasonable approximation even for acrylate-based monomers having mesogenic substituents.
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