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Sequential curing of amine-acrylate-methacrylate mixtures based on selective aza-Michael addition followed by radical photopolymerization

Abstract

Dual curing systems find various uses in industry with the process flexibility they provide which allows tailoring properties at different curing stages in accordance with application requirements. A safe and efficient dual curing scheme is proposed here for a set of mixtures containing different proportions of acrylates and methacrylates. The first curing stage is a stoichiometric aza-Michael addition between acrylates and an amine, followed by photo-initiated radical homopolymerization of methacrylates and remaining acrylates. An analysis of aza-Michael reaction kinetics confirmed that amines react selectively with acrylates, leaving methacrylates unreacted after the first curing stage. It was found that acrylate-rich mixtures achieve complete global conversion at the end of the scheme. However, the highest crosslinking density and thermal resistance was observed in a methacrylate-rich formulation. The resulting materials show a wide range of viscoelastic properties at both curing stages that can be tailored to a variety of industrial application needs.Postprint (author's final draft

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