A general kinetic model for the photothermal oxidation of polypropylene
Article dans une revue avec comité de lecture
A general kinetic model for the photothermal oxidation of polypropylene has been derived from the basic auto-oxidation mechanistic scheme in which the main sources of radicals are the thermolysis and photolysis of the most unstable species, i.e hydroperoxides. Thermolysis is a uni- or bi-molecular reaction whose rate constant obeys an Arrhenius law. In contrast, photolysis is exclusively a unimolecular reaction and its rate constant is independent of temperature. According to the quantum theory, this latter is proportional to the energy absorbed by photosensitive species and thus, accounts for the impact of UV-light intensity and wavelength on the global oxidation kinetics. The validity of this model has been checked on iPP films homogeneously oxidized in air over a wide range of temperatures and UV-light sources. It gives access to the concentration changes of: (i) primary (hydroperoxides) and secondary (carbonyls) oxidation products, (ii) double bonds, (iii) chain scissions and crosslinking nodes, but also to the subsequent changes in molecular masses. These calculations are in full agreement with the photolysis results reported by Carlsson and Wiles in the 70s [1–3]. However, the model seems to be only valid for UV-light energies equivalent to about 10 suns as upper boundary, presumably because of multiphotonic excitations or chromophores photosensitization (i.e. termolecular photo-physical reactions), both enhanced at high irradiances.
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