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Lecture 1-01 1. INTRODUCTION TO POLYMERIC MATERIALS 1.1. Introduction, Polymer Structure and Terminology Readings: Chapter 1-3 in Textbook: Principles of Polymer Systems, F. Rodriguez,  Taylor and Francis. and  Learning objectives: Define polymer. Be familiar with polymer structure and terminology. Be familiar with general properties of polymers. Explain the difference between thermoplastic, thermosetting and  elastomeric polymers. Greek word Poly = many;  Mer = unit     Polymer = many units The term  polymer  denotes a molecule made up by the repetition of some  simpler unit, the  monomer . The repeating structure is usually based on a  carbon backbone. Polymers are found in nature as proteins, cellulose, silk or synthesized like  polyethylene, polystyrene and nylon. Some natural polymers can also be  produced synthetically such as natural rubber (polyisoprene). There are polymers that contain only carbon and hydrogen (for example,  polypropylene, polybutylene, polystyrene, and polymethylpentene). Even though the basic makeup of many polymers is carbon and hydrogen,  other elements can also be involved. Oxygen, chlorine, fluorine, nitrogen,  silicon, phosphorous, and sulfur are other elements that are found in the  molecular makeup of polymers. Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) contains chlorine.  Nylon contains nitrogen and oxygen. Teflon contains fluorine. Polyesters and  polycarbonates contain oxygen. Vulcanized rubber and thiokol contain sulfur. e.g., monomer monomer 1
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Polyethylene (PE) Poly(vinyl chloride) (PVC) There are also some polymers that, instead of having carbon backbones,  have silicon or phosphorous backbones. These are considered inorganic  polymers. One of the most famous silicon-based polymers is Silly Putty TM . Single polymer molecules typically have molecular weights between 10,000  and 1,000,000 g/mol, that can be more than 2,000 repeating units depending  on the polymer structure! e.g., typical  molecular weight     300,000     21,000 C atoms/mol typical chain length     2700 nm,         typical diameter     0.3 nm Notation The repeating structure results in large chainlike molecules. In notation, the  repeating unit or monomer is included with the number of repeating units per  polymer chain,  n . e.g.,
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This note was uploaded on 08/23/2010 for the course BENG 11 taught by Professor Junma during the Three '10 term at University of Adelaide.

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