Presented at the 8th International Conference on Polyolefin Characterization (ICPC), 2023, Valencia, Spain.
By Alba Cárdenas, Pilar del Hierro, Olivier Boyron, Alberto Ortín. Polymer Char, Valencia, Spain.
The determination of the solution viscosity of polymeric materials is very important to the industry, both to research and manufacturing, since it can be used to estimate molar mass, thus providing valuable information relating to the physical properties of polymers. The relative viscosity of a dilute polymer solution to that of the pure solvent itself is measured and, from this, the intrinsic viscosity of the polymer can be calculated. Due to the popularity of dilute solution viscosity measurements and the availability of those methods in many manufacturing laboratories, this method has been traditionally used to specify and to control the production grades. New fully automated instrumentation for determining solution viscosity has been developed, based on a two-capillary serial viscometer, optimized for each application. This automated approach adds safety and increases efficiency, therefore becoming a practical and convenient alternative to manual or semi-automated methods.
Determination of intrinsic viscosity is relevant to different industries including polyolefins (PE, PP, UHMWPE) and PET), either as quality control of products, process control in production plants, processing industry or specific degradation studies.