Theoretical and experimental study of foaming process with chain extended recycled PET

I. Coccorullo, L. Di Maio, S. Montesano, L. Incarnato
2009 eXPRESS Polymer Letters  
The theoretical and experimental study of a thermoplastic polymer foaming process is presented. Industrial scraps of PET were used for the production of foamed sheets. The process was performed by making use of a chemical blowing agent (CBA) in the extrusion process. Due to the low intrinsic viscosity of the recycled PET, a chain extender was also used in order to increase the molecular weight of the polymer matrix. Pyromellitic dianhydride (PMDA) and Hydrocerol CT 534 were chosen as chain
more » ... hosen as chain extender and CBA, respectively. The reactive extrusion and foaming were performed in a two step process. Rheological characterization was carried out on PET samples previously treated with PMDA, as well as the morphological study was performed to define the cellular structure of the foams produced. Moreover, in order to predict the morphology of the foam, a non isothermal model was developed by taking into account both mass transfer phenomenon and viscous forces effect. Model results were compared with experimental data obtained analyzing the foamed samples. The model was validated in relation to working conditions, chemical blowing agent percentage and initial rheological properties of recycled polymer. A pretty good agreement between experimental and calculated data was achieved.
doi:10.3144/expresspolymlett.2009.12 fatcat:hz7fkoy6qrh4pmnrezmi76ttfy