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Shape memory effect of poly(L‐lactide)‐ based polyurethanes with different hard segments

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A series of biodegradable polylactide‐based polyurethanes (PLAUs) were synthesized using PLA diol (M n = 3200) as soft segment, 4,4′‐diphenylmethane diisocyanate (MDI), 2,4‐toluene diisocyanate (TDI), and isophorone diisocyanate (IPDI) as hard segment, and 1,4‐butanediol as chain extender. The structures and properties of these PLAUs were studied using infrared spectroscopy, differential scanning calorimetry, tensile testing, and thermomechanical analysis. Among them, the MDI‐based PLAU has the highest T g, maximum tensile strength, and restoration force, the TDI‐based PLAU has the lowest T g, and the IPDI‐based PLAU has the highest tensile modulus and elongation at break. They are all amorphous. The shape recovery of the three PLAUs is almost complete in a tensile elongation of 150% or a twofold compression. They can keep their temporary shape easily at room temperature (20 °C). More importantly, they can deform and recover at a temperature below their T g values. Therefore, by selecting the appropriate hard segment and adjusting the ratio of hard to soft segments, they can meet different practical demands for shape memory medical devices. Copyright © 2007 Society of Chemical Industry
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Keywords: glass transition temperature; poly(L‐lactide); polyurethane; shape memory

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 July 2007

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