FIELD OF THE INVENTION
Novel copolymers of maleic anhydride, maleic acid, dichloromaleic anhydride or dichloromaleic acid and fluorinated olefins are prepared by free radical polymerization in a nonaqueous medium in the presence of a solvent such as a perfluorinated alkyl carboxylic acid, or liquid or supercritical carbon dioxide or hexafluoropropylene.
Fluorinated polymers are important items of commerce, being particularly noted, for instance, for their thermal and chemical resistance, and their often unusual surface properties. However, sometimes these unusual properties, as for example low adhesion to substrates, are often themselves also problems in the use of these polymers, so fluorinated (co)polymers with modified properties are constantly being sought.
Although it is known that certain functional groups, especially polar functional groups, can modify the properties of fluoropolymers, incorporation of these groups into fluoropolymers without sacrificing other desirable properties is often difficult for a variety of reasons. For example the required monomers may not copolymerize with fluorinated monomers or may cause other undesirable effects in a copolymerization, or incorporation of a monomer containing a polar group may adversely affect the chemical and/or thermal stability of the resulting polymer. While it is known that maleic anhydride or maleic acid are desirable comonomers for such polymerizations, practical methods for the incorporation of these monomers into fluoropolymers have been lacking, and therefore preparation and use of such polymers has languished.
Polymers containing relatively high proportions of fluorinated olefins, especially highly fluorinated olefins, have generally been grafted with MAN (or MAN copolymers) rather than being formed by copolymerizing with the MAN, see for instance M. Miller, et al., J. Appl. Polym. Sci., vol. 14, p. 257-266 (1970), German Patent Application 4,210,594, U.S. Pat. Nos. 5,576,106, 4,506,035, Australian Patent 550,961, and European Patent Applications 761,757 and 650,987. Many of these references also describe uses for such grafted polymers which are also applicable to the polymers herein.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
This invention concerns a first polymer, comprising, repeat units derived from:
(a) at least 1 mole percent hexafluoropropylene;
(b) at least 1 mole percent total of one or more of tetrafluoroethylene, vinyl fluoride, trifluoroethylene, chlorotrifluoroethylene, ethylene, and vinylidene fluoride; and
(c) 0.03 to about 5 mole percent total of one or more of maleic anhydride, maleic acid, dichloromaleic anhydride or dichloromaleic acid.
This invention also concerns a second polymer, comprising, repeat units derived from:
(a) at least 1 mole percent tetrafluoroethylene or chlorotrifluoroethylene;
(b) at least one mole percent of ethylene, a compound of the formula F2
is alkyl or halogen substituted alkyl containing 1 to 10 carbon atoms and optionally containing one or more ether oxygen atoms between perfluoroalkylene or perfluoroalkyl segments, perfluoro(2-methylene-4-methyl-1,3-dioxolane), F2
wherein p is 1 or 2, and a compound of the formula
wherein R8 and R9 are each independently fluorine or perfluoroalkyl containing 1 to 4 carbon atoms; and
(c) 0.03 to about 10 mole percent of one or more of maleic anhydride, maleic acid, dichloromaleic anhydride or dichloromaleic acid.
This invention also concerns a third polymer, comprising, repeat units derived from:
(a) at least 1 mole percent vinyl fluoride, vinylidene fluoride, or chlorotrifluoroethylene; and
(b) 0.03 to about 10 mole percent of one or more of maleic anhydride, maleic acid, dichloromaleic anhydride or dichloromaleic acid.
Also disclosed herein is a process for the production of maleic anhydride, maleic acid, dichloromaleic anhydride or dichloromaleic acid copolymers with fluoroolefins by free radical polymerization in an essentially nonaqueous polymerization system, wherein the improvement comprises, using as a solvent one or more of: a compound of the formula R6CO2H wherein R6 is perfluoroalkyl containing 1 to 6 carbon atoms, liquid or supercritical carbon dioxide, or liquid or supercritical hexafluoropropylene.
Further disclosed is a coated substrate coated with the compositions disclosed herein, a composite structure comprising the coated substrate plus an additional substrate adhered to the coated substrate and a melt blend of thermoplastic with the compositions disclosed herein.
DETAILS OF THE INVENTION
The process described herein for incorporating maleic acid (MAC), maleic anhydride (MAN), dichloromaleic anhydride (DCMAN) or dichloromaleic acid (DCMAC) (or collectively MA) in polymers derived from fluorinated olefins is similar to prior art processes for free radically polymerizing such fluorinated olefins in nonaqueous systems. Preferred monomers of MA are MAC and MAN.
By a fluorinated olefin is meant a compound in which at least one of the vinylic hydrogen atoms is replaced by a fluorine atom. Thus useful fluorinated olefins include tetrafluoroethylene (TFE), chlorotrifluoroethylene (CTFE), hexafluoropropylene (HFP), vinylidene fluoride (VF2), vinyl fluoride (VF), trifluorovinyl methyl ether, perfluoro(methyl vinyl ether) (PMVE), perfluoro(ethyl vinyl ether) (PEVE), and perfluoro(propyl vinyl ether) (PPVE), but does not include olefins such as 3,3,3-trifluoropropene and vinyl trifluoromethyl ether.
Herein, fumaric acid may be substituted, in the same required and preferred proportions, in any composition or process in which MAC is used.
By “repeat units derived from” herein is meant that the repeat units specified (and the monomers they are derived from) were incorporated into the fluoropolymer by addition polymerization, and not, for instance, by grafting. Grafting of compounds such as MAN onto already existing polymers results polymers which have a different structure. Generally the MAN moiety which is grafted onto the fluoropolymer is a side chain on the polymer, not part of the main polymer chain.
The free radically polymerized (co)polymerization of such monomers in nonaqueous systems is known, see for instance U.S. Pat. No. 5,637,663, W. Gerhartz, et al., Ed., Ullmann's Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry, Vol. A11, VCH Verlagsgesellschaft mbH, Weinheim, 1988, p. 393-429, and H. Mark, et al., Ed., Encyclopedia of Polymer Science and Engineering, Vol. 16, John Wiley & Sons, New York, 1989, p. 577-648, all of which are hereby included by reference. Conditions in such polymerization systems need not be changed significantly to incorporate MA into the polymer being made, just inclusion of the one (or more) of the solvents listed above and of course one or more of MAN, MAC, DCMAN or DCMAC. By a nonaqueous system is meant that a separate predominantly aqueous phase is not present in significant quantities in the polymerization process, and preferably is not present at all. Since MAC and DCMAC are soluble in water, they do not readily copolymerize with fluorinated monomers when an aqueous phase is present. Also, when water is present MAN or DCMAN is readily converted to MAC or DCMAC, respectively. Conversely, if the polymerization is carried out at higher temperatures, MAC or DCMAC may be dehydrated to MAN or DCMAC, respectively.
By a solvent in this polymerization process is meant a material which dissolves to a significant extent in the same phase the MAN and/or MAC and/or DCMAN and/or DCMAC, the other monomers, and the initiator(s). Production of the desired MA copolymer under these conditions is evidence that these solubility conditions have been met. Of course the solvent should preferably not significantly interfere with the polymerization, such as by causing excessive chain transfer or premature termination of the polymerization. It need not dissolve the product polymer to any significant extent. Thus the nonaqueous polymerization may be a true solution polymerization in which all of the components and the product polymer are soluble in the process medium, or it may be a suspension, slurry or dispersion polymerization in which some or all of the starting materials, and especially the product polymer, are not very soluble in the polymerization medium. It is preferred that R6 is perfluoro-n-alkyl and more preferred that it is trifluoromethyl. At polymerization temperatures>100° C., and when hexafluoropropylene is acceptable as a comonomer [if it copolymerizes with the other monomer(s)], it is preferred that the solvent is supercritical hexafluoropropylene, or a combination of supercritical hexafluoropropylene and trifluoroacetic acid, more preferably about 1 volume percent trifluoroacetic acid.
As mentioned above conventional conditions may be used in the free radical catalyzed preparation of the MA copolymers. For instance, useful initiators include NF3, bis(4-t-butylcyclohexyl)peroxydicarbonate, perfluoropropionyl peroxide, isobutyryl peroxide, and CF3CF2CF2OCF(CF3)(C═O)OO(C═O)(CF3)CFOCF2CF2CF3. These may be utilized at their “normal” use temperatures. The process may be run in any conventional manner, such as batch, semi-batch or continuously. For polymers with high HFP contents, especially those which are copolymers with TFE and/or VF2 and are amorphous, the procedure described in U.S. Pat. No. 5,637,663 may be used. Here of course the HFP acts not only as a solvent for the MA, but also is one of the monomers that is polymerized. Indeed if HFP is utilized as the solvent, it will often also act as a monomer incorporated into the polymer. The MA may be added as melt to any of the solvents during the process.
Sufficient MA should be added to the polymerization medium to assure the desired amount of MA in the resulting polymer. The amounts needed for any particular polymer incorporation will vary depending on the polymerization conditions and the monomers (and their proportions) being polymerized, but as is generally known, an increase of MA in the polymerization medium will usually result in an increase in the amount of MA incorporated into the polymer. It is preferred that the first polymer contain about 0.1 to about 2 mole percent of MA derived repeat units. It is preferred that the second polymer contain about 0.03 to about 5 mole percent of MA derived repeat units, more preferably about 0.1 to about 2 mole percent of MA derived repeat units.
It is known in the art that many polymers containing MA derived repeat units can be reversibly changed from MAN to MAC units or DCMAN to DCMAC units. The anhydride can be converted to the diacid by exposure to water, although with polymers that are highly water repellent this may take some time. Conversely, the diacid may be converted to the anhydride by heating especially in the absence of water. Either the anhydride or diacid may be converted to a monobasic or dibasic salt by reaction with appropriate amount of base such as a metallic or ammonium hydroxide. Of course only some of the MAC or DCMAC groups may be converted to the monobasic salt, or some may be in the form of the monobasic salt and some in the form of the dibasic salt. The salts may be converted back to a diacid by reaction with an appropriate amount of acid, the acid preferably being a stronger acid than the carboxyl groups of the polymeric MAC or DCMAC.
During the polymerization process, MA may be added intermittently or only during part of the process or the amount of MA may be varied, so that the amount of MA in the polymer is not necessarily uniform, and in some cases some of the polymer will not contain MA at all. In this way a polymer fraction containing MA which may act as an adhesive (see below) for the bulk polymer is produced.
The first polymer herein must contain repeat units derived from HFP and one or more of TFE, VF2, trifluoroethylene (TF3), ethylene (E) and vinyl fluoride (VF). In such a polymer, it is preferred that the polymer contain at least about 20 mole percent, more preferably at least about 30 mole percent of repeat units derived from HFP. The HFP repeat unit is —CF(CF3)CF2—. It is also preferred that this polymer be amorphous. By amorphous is meant there is no melting transition with the heat of fusion greater than 1 J/g above 35° C., when measured by Differential Scanning Calorimetry. It is also preferred when repeat units derived from TFE or VF2 is present that each be about at least 10 mole percent of the repeat units present. The repeat unit derived from TFE is —CF2CF2—, the repeat unit derived from VF2 is —CF2CH2—, the repeat unit derived from E is —CH2CH2—, the repeat unit derived from TF3 is —CFHCF2—, the repeat unit derived from CTFE is —CF2CFCl—, and the repeat unit derived from VF is —CFHCH2—. In another preferred form, the first polymer additionally comprises one or more other repeat units derived from one or more of 3,3,3-trifluoropropene, 2,3,3,3-tetrafluoropropene, 4-bromo-3,3,4,4-tetrafluoro- 1 -butene, CH2═CHO(C═O)R2 wherein R2 is perfluoro-n-alkyl containing 1 to 8 carbon atoms, CH2═CHR3 wherein R3 is perfluoro-n-alkyl containing 1 to 8 carbon atoms, CH2═CH(C═O)OR4 wherein R4 is CnFxHy wherein x+y=2n+1 and n is 1 to 8, chlorotrifluoroethylene, CF2═CFR5 wherein R5 is perfluoroalkyl optionally containing one or more of one or more ether groups, one cyano group, or one sulfonyl fluoride group, perfluoro(2-methylene-4-methyl-1,3-dioxolane), perfluoro(1,3-dioxole), a perfluoro(2,2-alkyl substitued-1,3-dioxole), 4,5-difluoro-2,2-bis(trifluoromethyl)-1,3-dioxole or FSO2CF2CF2OCF(CF3)CF2OCF═CF2, F2C═CF(CF2)pOCF═CF2 wherein p is 1 or 2, and F2C═CFOR7 wherein R7 is alkyl or halogen substituted alkyl containing 1 to 10 carbon atoms, and optionally containing one or more ether oxygen atoms between carbon atoms.
The presence of repeat units in the first polymer derived from one or more of the “other” monomers is preferably no more than about 10 mole percent each, and also preferably no more than about 2 mole percent each, and also more preferably the total amount of other monomers is less than about 15 mole percent.
Preferred first polymers (molar percents): HFP (30-70)/TFE (30-70)/MA (0.1-2); HFP (30-70)/TFE (1-50)VF2 (1-50)/MA (0.1-2); HFP (40-70)/VF2 (30-60)/MA (0.1-2).
The second polymer contains at least 1 mole percent of repeat units derived from TFE, preferably at least about 40 mole percent of such repeat units. It also contains at least one mole percent, preferably at least about 40 mole percent, of repeat units derived from ethylene (—CH2CH2—), or a preferably at about 1 to about 5 mole percent of a repeat unit derived from a compound of the formula F2C═CFOR1 wherein the polymer is a thermoplastic, or at least 30 mole percent wherein the polymer is an elastomer. It is preferred that either ethylene or F2C═CFOR1 (not both) be present in the polymer. In preferred polymers containing F2C═CFOR1, R1 is alkyl, more preferably n-alkyl, or perfluoroalkyl, more preferably perfluoro-n-alkyl, and especially preferably trifluoromethyl, perfluoroethyl or perfluoropropyl.
Specific preferred second polymers are (mole percents in parentheses): TFE (30-98.95)/perfluoro(alkyl vinyl ether) (1-69)/MA (0.03-10); TFE (30-69)/perfluoro(propyl vinyl ether (1-9)/MA (0.03-5); TFE (30-68.95)/ethylene (30-70)/MA (0.1-10); and TFE (5-50)/4,5-difluoro-2,2-bis(trifluoromethyl)-1,3-dioxolane (40-95)/MA (0.05-5).
Additional repeat units which may be present in the second polymer are one or more of vinyl fluoride, trifluoroethylene, 3,3,3-trifluoropropene, 2,3,3,3-tetrafluoropropene, 4-bromo-3,3,4,4-tetrafluoro-1-butene, CH2═CHO(C═O)R2 wherein R2 is perfluoro-n-alkyl containing 1 to 8 carbon atoms, CH2═CHR3 wherein R3 is perfluoro-n-alkyl containing 1 to 8 carbon atoms, CH2═CH(C═O)OR4 wherein R4 is CnFxHy wherein x+y=2n+1 and n is 1 to 8, chlorotrifluoroethylene, CF2═CFR5 wherein R5 is perfluoroalkyl optionally containing one or more ether groups, one cyano group, or one sulfonyl group, or CF2═CFOCF2CF(CF3)OCF2CF2SO2F.
In the third polymer herein repeat units derived from other monomers may also be present. Preferred comonomers include vinyl fluoride, trifluoroethylene, 3,3,3-trifluoropropene, 2,3,3,3-tetrafluoropropene, 4-bromo-3,3,4,4-tetrafluoro-1-butene, CH2═CHO(C═O)R2 wherein R2 is perfluoro-n-alkyl containing 1 to 8 carbon atoms, CH2═CHR3 wherein R3 is perfluoro-n-alkyl containing 1 to 8 carbon atoms, CH2═CH(C═O)OR4 wherein R4 is CnFxHy wherein x+y=2n+1 and n is 1 to 8, chlorotrifluoroethylene, CF2═CFR5 wherein R5 is perfluoroalkyl optionally containing one or more ether groups, one cyano group, or one sulfonyl group, CF2═CFOCF2CF(CF3)OCF2CF2SO2F, perfluoro(2-methylene-4-methyl-1,3-dioxolane), perfluoro(1,3-dioxole), a perfluoro(2,2-alkyl substitued-1,3-dioxole), 4,5-difluoro-2,2-bis(trifluoromethyl)-1,3-dioxole, or F2C═CF(CF2)pOCF═CF2 wherein p is 1 or 2, and F2C═CFOR7 wherein R7 is alkyl or halogen substituted alkyl containing 1 to 10 carbon atoms, and optionally containing one or more ether oxygen atoms between carbon atoms.
Specific preferred third polymers are MAC or MAN (0.1-1 0)/VF (90-99.9); MAC or MAN (0.1-10)/VF2 (90-99.9).
In any of the above polymers, when the repeat units are “derived” from maleic acid, they may actually be made from maleic anhydride and hydrolyzed, or if the repeat units are “derived” from maleic anhydride they may actually be made from maleic acid and dehydrated, and similarly for dichloromaleic anhydride and acid.
The polymers containing MA (or their salts) are useful in many applications. They may act as adhesives between two different fluoropolymers, or probably more important, between a fluoropolymer and another substance, such as another polymeric material, for example a thermoplastic. In order to accomplish this, a layer of the MA copolymer may be coated onto the fluoropolymer or other substrate and the fluoropolymer and other substrate surfaces brought together. If another thermoplastic is the substrate, it preferably contains functional groups which may react with anhydride and/or carboxyl groups, thereby forming a stronger adhesive bond. Blends of polymers containing and not containing MA may be made during polymer synthesis, see above. Alternately, the MA copolymer may be (melt) mixed into the fluoropolymer which will then adhere better to another substance, or coextruded as a layer between two other polymer layers to be bonded. A blend of the MA copolymer and another fluoropolymer or other thermoplastic may alter the surface characteristics of the fluoropolymer. For example, the fluoropolymer may be more easily wetted. In such a situation the fluoropolymer may be more easily marked, as by ink, therefore rendering useful as a labeling material. The MA containing polymers may be used in blends as compatibilizing agents between fluoropolymers and other types of polymers. Other uses include polymers for coatings, or polymers that may be crosslinked, especially elastomers.
The use of the MA containing polymers as adhesives, compatibilizing agent and for other uses can be accomplished as is known in the art for other kinds of polymers which accomplish the same end using similar methods. For instance, melt mixing of compatibilizing polymers into polymers or polymers blends using equipment such as screw extruders is well known. Similarly multilayer film extrusion, including the use of so-called adhesive or tie layers is also well known.
In the Examples, all pressures are gauge pressures, unless otherwise noted.
In the Examples, the following abbreviations are used:
DSC—Differential Scanning Calorimetry
Mn—number average molecular weight
Mw—weight average molecular weight
PEVE—perfluoro(ethyl vinyl ether)
PMVE—perfluoro(methyl vinyl ether)
PPVE—perfluoro(propyl vinyl ether)
Tg—glass transition temperature (taken as the midpoint of the transition)
Tm—melting point (taken as the peak of the melting endotherm)
In the polymers exemplified below, maleic anhydride concentrations were most often estimated by IR spectroscopy. A solution of 0.1 g succinic anhydride in 10 ml of ethanol in a 0.102 mm CaF2 cell gave absorptivities of 1765 cm2/g at 1867 cm−1 and 10,894 cm2/g at 1790 cm−1. Assuming that copolymerized maleic anhydride has the same absorptivity as ethanolic succinic anhydride, maleic anhydride concentrations can be estimated. When cold pressed as thin films, the TFE/PPVE/MA terpolymers showed peaks at 1896 and 1819 cm−1, the TFE/PDD/MA terpolymers at 1897 and 1822 cm−1, and the TFE/E/MA terpolymers at 1857 and 1782 cm−1. In the case of TFE/PPVE/MA, an internal IR band at 2363 cm−1 was used to measure film thickness while in the case of TFE/PDD/MA and TFE/E/MA film thickness was measured with a micrometer. At the 0.15 mm to 0.25 mm thicknesses achieved with 69 MPa to 180 MPa of pressure on 0.1 to 0.2 g of sample in a 13 mm die, the stronger anhydride band at 1782-1822 cm−1 was generally off scale leaving the weaker anhydride band at 1857 to 1897 cm−1 to be used for MA concentration calculations. In the case of the TFE/PPVE/MA copolymers, the spectrum of a Teflon® PFA control sample was subtracted prior calculation.