The effect of allyl ethers on the free radical polymerization of styrene has been studied with respect to chain transfer, copolymerization, and conversion. The studies have been performed in an inert atmosphere or in air. Six different allyl ethers have been used as model substances in order to show the effect of structural differences of the ethers on the polymerization. Contrary to what was expected, no chain transfer through hydrogen abstraction was found. Nor did any copolymerization occur. When the polymerization was performed in air, the allyl ethers had a retarding effect on the polymerization rate, due to oxidation of the allyl ethers. The oxidation rate of the allyl ethers was found to be related to their structure, where the functionality and presence of intramolecular hydrogen bonding are the main factors.
1991. Vol. 29, 9-14 p.