The synthesis of copolymers with a narrow chemical composition distribution (CCD) often requires a technological solution to overcome composition drift. Among the possible solutions, polymerization in a continuous stirred tank reactor (CSTR) is one of the most elegant. During steady state operation, the CCD is only determined by the statistical nature of the copolymerization without any broadening as typically observed in batch reactions. In this contribution, the mathematical description of the copolymerization of styrene and maleic anhydride in a CSTR is provided and experimental data are used to estimate reactivity ratios as well as to describe the copolymer composition as a function of steady state conversion.
- Maleic anhydride
- Radical copolymerization