October 19, 2021, 05:16:52 AM
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Topic: Polymer that degrades rapidly in NaOH  (Read 162 times)

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Offline TimG123

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Polymer that degrades rapidly in NaOH
« on: October 08, 2021, 09:38:57 AM »
I'm attempting to design a filter paper that can be used to filter particulates (0.5 micrometers) from an aqueous solution around pH 8.0.

I also need the filter to degrade rapidly (1 minute or less) in an alkaline solution (0.2 Molar NaOH), while at room temperature. I can gently swirl the solution, but I cannot heat it, or sonicate it. It is highly preferable that catalysts or accelerators are not required.

Does anyone know of an existing filter, or just a polymer that meets these criteria?

The best polymer I could find was Poly Lactic Acid (PLA). It looks like chunks of PLA will degrade pretty quickly in concentrated NaoH, but it requires addition of heat and/or sonication and/or methanol. Since the PLA I use would be spun into thin filaments for the filter, it would probably degrade much faster in NaoH than chunks of PLA (which required heat/sonication/methanol), but I haven’t done any testing yet. I’m wondering if anyone has any insight or suggestions.

Is it possible to modify a PLA polymer to make it more susceptible to NaOH?
Is there a better polymer than PLA?

Offline wildfyr

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Re: Polymer that degrades rapidly in NaOH
« Reply #1 on: October 11, 2021, 06:56:42 PM »
Hmmm.... minutes to degrade in aqueous solution? I think maybe consider solubility. Perhaps a polymer that is sparingly soluble in water under neutral conditions but very soluble in basic conditions. Some copolymer of polyacrylic acid perhaps?

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