Bio-based poly(vinyl ether)s and their application as alkyd-type surface coatings
Novel bio-based poly(vinyl ether) copolymers derived from soybean oil and menthol were produced by cationic polymerization and investigated for application as alkyd-type surface coatings. Compared to conventional alkyd resins, which are produced by high temperature melt condensation polymerization, the bio-based poly(vinyl ether)s were thought to provide several advantages. These advantages include milder, more energy efficient polymer synthesis, elimination of issues associated with gelation during polymer synthesis, production of polymers with well-defined composition and relatively narrow molecular weight distribution, and elimination of film formation and physical property issues associated with entrained monomers, dimers, trimers, etc. As expected, incorporation of the tri-substituted cycloaliphatic groups derived from menthol pendent to the poly(vinyl ether) polymer backbone significantly increased the glass transition temperature and mechanical properties of crosslinked networks produced by autoxidation. Overall, the results of the study suggest a high potential for these novel copolymers with high bio-based content to be used for alkyd-type coatings.