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Characterisation of selected polymers toolbox

A broad selection of analytical and rheological techniques was used to characterise a variety of polymers. The result contains a round-robin comparison of the results of the various techniques. It provides new insights into the value and discriminating power of each technique. The results were summarised in a toolbox, which serves as input for further evaluation and calculation of the performance of these polymers. It was found that GPC analysis for molecular mass distrubtion determination can lead to large differences between partners, if not handled according to the same protocol.

Rheological tests were better reproducable between labs. The combined use of creep and creep recovery and oscillatory shear and capillary rheometry provides a good tool to determine the entire shear relaxation spectrum and viscosity. Uniaxial extension was found to be a good test to distinguish non-linear viscoelastic effects. The result has introduced new tools to various partners. It has enabled determining differences between polymers that were hard to find with previous methods. It has stimulated the discussion on well-defined protocols.

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