Letter | Published:

Mutual diffusion in a miscible polymer blend

Nature volume 321, pages 161162 (08 May 1986) | Download Citation

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Abstract

Self-diffusion in polymer melts has been extensively studied and is reasonably well understood in terms of the reptation model1–4; the related phenomenon of mutual diffusion in miscible blends of chemically different polymers has received little attention, despite its practical relevance and implications for physical processes, such as phase separation kinetics. In such blends, attractive interactions between the monomers, when summed over a polymer chain, may lead to large enthalpic driving forces favouring the mixing; this in turn results in a mutual diffusion rate which is rapid compared with the entropically driven self-diffusion5, and which is strongly composition-dependent6. We have measured mutual diffusion as a function of composition in one such binary blend, polyvinyl chloride (PVC)/polycaprolactone (PCL), and report here that the mutual diffusion coefficient is strongly enhanced in the middle of the composition range. This result is qualitatively, though not quantitatively, in accord with the results of some recent theoretical treatments5–8.

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Author information

Author notes

    • J. Klein

    Permanent address and address for correspondence: Department of Polymer Research, Weizmann Institute, Rehovot 76100, Israel.

Affiliations

  1. Cavendish Laboratory, University of Cambridge, Madingley Rd, Cambridge CB3 0HE, UK

    • R. A. L. Jones
    • , J. Klein
    •  & A. M. Donald

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DOI

https://doi.org/10.1038/321161a0

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