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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: GR/M73705/01
Title: CONTROLLED PHOTO POLYMERISATION USING A THIN FILM SPINNING DISC REACTOR
Principal Investigator: Jachuck, Dr R
Other Investigators:
Clark, Professor JH Scott, Professor K MacQuarrie, Dr D
MacQuarrie, Dr D
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Department: Chemical Engineering & Advanced Material
Organisation: Newcastle University
Scheme: Standard Research (Pre-FEC)
Starts: 01 September 1999 Ends: 31 October 2002 Value (£): 208,782
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Materials Characterisation Materials Processing
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Manufacturing Chemicals
No relevance to Underpinning Sectors
Related Grants:
Panel History:  
Summary on Grant Application Form
The proposed project will study and investigate the potential use of a thin film spinning disc reactor for controlled continuous radical and cationic polymerisation using photo initiators. Ultra violet (UV) light (360-400 nm) will be utilised as the energy source for activating the initiator. We aim to study the continuous controlled photo polymerisation of styrene by using a Spinning Disc Reactor which continuously generates thin highly sheared films. Styrene is chosen as a candidate for free radical polymerisation as kinetic data is readily available for bench marking purposes and a bulk (4) polymerisation method will be used as it is considered to be environmentally benign. For photo polymerisation it is essential that the monomer and the initiator are present in the form of a thin film for uniform penetration of UV. This cannot be achieved with conventional polymer reactors. Using a spinning disc polymeriser the following benefits for UV initiation will arise: Faster reaction rates and hence significantly reduced processing times leading to energy savings.. Reaction times will be in seconds rather than hours. Cleaner process as it requires no solvents, emulsifiers and additives can be performed and higher selectivity can be achieved. Improved product quality as tighter molecular weight distributions (MWDs) can be achieved.The production of free-radicals may be stopped merely by shutting off the light, and restarted by turning it on again. This would allow better control of the chain length and chain arrangement.
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Further Information:  
Organisation Website: http://www.ncl.ac.uk