Joseph Stanzione - Synthesis and Characterization of Ionic Polymer Networks in a Room Temperature Ionic Liquid

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      Ionic liquid gels (ILGs) were generated via a free radical   copolymerization of 2-acrylamido-2-methyl-1-propanesulfonic acid   (AMPS) and N,N′-methylenebis(acrylamide) (MBA) using   1-ethyl-3-methylimidazolium ethylsulfate [EMIM][EtSO4]   as a room temperature ionic liquid (RTIL) solvent medium.    The AMPS and MBA solubility window in [EMIM][EtSO4] at   65 °C, which was also the cure temperature of the ILGs with   potassium persulfate (PPS) as the free radical initiator, was   determined.  In-situ attenuated total reflectance-Fourier   transform infrared (ATR-FTIR) spectroscopy showed near complete   conversion of carbon-carbon double bonds (C=C) of the   monomers to a cross-linked polymer network.  Scanning   electron microscopy (SEM) showed that a few ILG formulations   contained possible phase separated regions.  The glass   transition temperature of the resultant ILG formulations   (Tg,ILG), elastic modulus in compression   (EC), and conductivity (σ) were determined   via dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA), quasi-static mechanical   analysis, and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy,   respectively.  Utilizing gravimetric analysis in excess RTIL   and the calculation of the apparent molecular weight between   cross-links (MC) via EC  results, the polymer-solvent interaction parameter (χ)   was determined via a modified version of the Bray and Merrill   equation.

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