Polymer decomposition

Thermal stability of polymers
T R Crompton
Smithers RAPRA
2012 | 226pp | £95 (PB)
ISBN 9781847355140
Reviewed by Baljinder Kandola

This book reviews the literature on the thermal stability of various polymers using a number of analytical techniques and hence provides a very good initial reference for scientists working with polymers. All the important polymers, namely carbon–hydrogen based, rubber, oxygen–, halogen–, nitrogen–, sulfur–, silicon–, phosphorus– and trace metal–containing, are covered in chapters one to nine respectively.

While the breadth of the subject is demonstrated by the compilation of major works in the area, the references are relatively old – the majority of them are up to 2000, with very few from 2001–2004 and none beyond that.

The majority of the chapters are well written, starting with the mechanism of decomposition of different polymer types, followed by the results from various analytical techniques presented in tables and figures. However sometimes, in particular in chapters one and two, analytical techniques are introduced without discussing their relevance to the thermal stability of polymers. This makes it difficult for non-experts to understand the significance of the results. In some cases, results from the literature are presented without providing details of the samples, or examples of polymers plus additives are presented without explaining the effect that additives can have on the thermal stability of pure polymers, which makes it difficult to follow.

Perhaps at the beginning a brief introduction to the various techniques and a discussion that compares their validity, relevance to the subject area, limitations and reproducibility would be beneficial, especially to those who are new to this area. It would have also been beneficial if the author had discussed methods to improve the thermal stability of polymers. On another note, in some equations, signs for free radicals and some bonds are missing.

To summarise, despite the shortcomings mentioned above, the book is a very valuable compilation of the literature on thermal stability of a wide range of polymers, which would be useful for polymer manufacturers and end users, as well as scientists working in this area.

Purchase this book from Amazon.co.uk.

Related Content

Plant-inspired plastics take shape

21 April 2015 Research

news image

Polymer that responds to multiple stimuli could bring shape-shifting plastics a step closer

Temperature responsive polymer stops overheating problem

21 August 2013 Research

news image

Work by scientists in China could prevent supercapacitor self-destruction

Most Commented

Antimony recovery lights up lamp waste recycling

2 October 2015 Research

news image

Green method produces fertiliser as a byproduct

Environmentally-friendly quantum dots make their mark

5 October 2015 Research

news image

Indium phosphide nanoparticles offer non-toxic alternative to cadium for richer, more colourful display screens