Physical Behavior of Triblock Copolymer Thermoplastic Elastomers Containing Sustainable Rosin-Derived Polymethacrylate End Blocks

Wenyue Ding, Shu Wang, Kejian Yao, Mitra S. Ganewatta, Chuanbing Tang, Megan L. Robertson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


A rosin-derived polymethacrylate, poly(dehydroabietic ethyl methacrylate) (PDAEMA), was evaluated as a sustainable end block in triblock copolymer-based thermoplastic elastomers. Triblock copolymers containing glassy PDAEMA end blocks and a rubbery poly(n-butyl acrylate) (PnBA) midblock were synthesized through atom transfer radical polymerization. The volume fraction of PDAEMA in the triblock copolymer was varied at constant midblock molecular weight. At lower PDAEMA content, the triblock copolymers exhibited microphase separated morphologies lacking long-range order, which transitioned to a well-defined cylindrical morphology as the PDAEMA content was increased. Observed thermal properties were consistent with the presence of distinct PDAEMA and PnBA domains. The order-disorder transition temperature increased with increasing PDAEMA content in the block copolymer, and the Flory-Huggins interaction parameter of PDAEMA/PnBA was strongly temperature-dependent yet small in value. The triblock copolymers exhibited elastomeric behavior at room temperature and accessible order-disorder transitions, appropriate for thermoplastic elastomer applications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)11470-11480
Number of pages11
JournalACS Sustainable Chemistry and Engineering
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 4 2017

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We appreciate the assistance of Dr. Charles Anderson and Dr. Scott Smith for access and training in the University of Houston Department of Chemistry Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Facility. We thank Dr. Ramanan Krishnamoorti and Ammar Aboalsaud for access to and training on the TGA instrument. The Rigaku SAXS instrument is funded by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. DMR-1040446. This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant Nos. DMR-1351788 and DMR-1252611.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 American Chemical Society.


  • Entanglement
  • Microphase separation
  • Polymethacrylate
  • Renewable resource polymers
  • Rosin
  • Sustainability
  • Thermoplastic elastomers


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