Stalled phase transition model of high-elastic polymer

VV Atrazhev and SF Burlatsky and DV Dmitriev and VI Sultanov, JOURNAL OF STATISTICAL MECHANICS-THEORY AND EXPERIMENT, P02004 (2013).

DOI: 10.1088/1742-5468/2013/02/P02004

The microscopic model of semi-crystalline polymer in a high-elastic state is proposed. The model is based on the assumption that, below the melting temperature, the semi-crystalline polymer comprises crystal nuclei connected by stretched chain segments (SCS) with a random configuration of monomers. The key factor that stalls the phase transition below the melting temperature is the tension of the SCS. External stress applied to the polymer also shifts the equilibrium and causes unfolding of the nuclei, which enables large reversible deformation of the polymer without loss of integrity. The simple 1D model predicts a plateau in the stress strain curve of the high-elastic polymer above the yield stress, which agrees with experimental observations. The model prediction for the temperature dependence of polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) yield stress in the high-elastic state is in satisfactory agreement with experiment.

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