1932

Abstract

The production of thermoset polymers is increasing globally owing to their advantageous properties, particularly when applied as composite materials. Though these materials are traditionally used in more durable, longer-lasting applications, ultimately, they become waste at the end of their usable lifetimes. Current recycling practices are not applicable to traditional thermoset waste, owing to their network structures and lack of processability. Recently, researchers have been developing thermoset polymers with the right functionalities to be chemically degraded under relatively benign conditions postuse, providing a route to future management of thermoset waste. This review presents thermosets containing hydrolytically or solvolytically cleavable bonds, such as esters and acetals. Hydrolysis and solvolysis mechanisms are discussed, and various factors that influence the degradation rates are examined. Degradable thermosets with impressive mechanical, thermal, and adhesion behavior are discussed, illustrating that the design of material end-of-life need not limit material performance.

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2020-06-07
2024-05-27
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