Breathable TPU Membranes

Patent Title: POROUS THERMOPLASTIC MEMBRANES

 Number/Link: WO2017/178482

Applicant/Assignee:  BASF

Publication date: 19-october-2017

Gist”: Semi-permeable membranes are made by phase inversion of all-hardblock TPU solutions

Why it is interesting: ‘Breathable” membranes show a high resistance to liquid water permeation (LEP) combined with a high water vapour permeability (WDD). According to this invention breathable polyurethane membranes can be prepared by dissolving an all-hardblock thermoplastic polyurethane in a polar, aprotic solvent (like N-methyl pyrrolidone) together with a water soluble compound, casting a film and coagulating the film with water. In the examples diisocyanates (MDI, TDI and HDI) are stoichiometrically reacted with chain extenders (MEG, BDO and HDO).  The resulting materials were schredded and dissolved in NMP together with some glycerol. 150 μm thick films were cast on glass and coagulated in water, resulting in membranes with an average pore size ranging between 4 and 500 nm.  The membranes are said to be useful to make breathable fabrics for outdoor wear e.g. (“Gore Tex” (TM) – type materials)

N-methyl-2-pyrrolidone

 

 

 

 

Hydrolysable Ureas

Patent Title: DYNAMIC UREA BONDS WITH FAST HYDROLYTIC KINETICS FOR POLYMERS

Number/Link: WO2017/155958

Applicant/Assignee: Univ. Illinois

Publication Date: 14 September 2017

“Gist”: Hindered urea bonds with fast hydrolysis kinetics are prepared from aromatic-sbstituted diamines and diisocyanates

Why it is interesting: Polyurethanes containing thermally reversible hindered urea bonds (HUBs) have been discussed before in this blog. In the current case the HUBs are prepared from aromatic (e.g aryl-) substituted amines and are said to show fast, pH-independent, hydrolysis kinetics. The HUBs can be built into linear or crosslinked polyurethanes or other polymers like polyamides, polycarbonates etc.  The resulting materials are useful for medical applications like drug delivery, water-degradable packaging, self-healing materials and the like.

HUB hysdrolysis

Hydrolysis reaction of phenyl-N-tetrabutyl-N-ethyl urea

 

Rigid Thermoplastic Polyurethanes

Patent Title: ISOCYANATE-MODIFIED RIGID THERMOPLASTIC POLYMER COMPOSITIONS

 Number/Link: WO2017/146948  WO2017/146949

Applicant/Assignee: Eastman Chemical

Publication date: 31 august 2017

Gist”: A “rigid”, high Tg polyester diol is extended with 4,4′ MDI

Why it is interesting: Rigid, high modulus TPUs have been known for a long time – see e.g. Upjohn’s classic patent on ‘Isoplast’ from 1981. These materials are high hardblock TPUs made from diisocyanates, chain extenders with only a small amount of high molecular weight diol as an impact modifier. According to the current invention however, rigid TPUs can be made using less than 40% (w/w) of diisocyanate, a high Tg polyester diol and optionally some chain extender.  The polyester is prepared from ‘rigid’ diols like isosorbide or 1,4-cyclohexanedimethanol together with a ‘rigid’ diacid like terephthalic acid, such that the diol has a MW of more than 400 Dalton and a Tg of more than 40°C. The diisocyanate is pref. 4,4-MDI. The rigid TPUs have a Tg of more than 145°C and a tensile modulus of 1 GPa or higher. They are said to be less moisture sensitive than conventional rigid TPUs.

1,4-cyclohexanedimethanol

TPU Aerosol

Title: POLYURETHANE AEROSOL COMPOSITIONS, ARTICLES, AND RELATED METHODS

Number/Link: US20170198150

Applicant/Assignee: 3M

Publication Date: 13-july-2017  (priority PCT)

“Gist”: Aqueous dispersion of a hydrazide-extended  TPU can be sprayed as aerosol to make protective films

Why it is interesting: An aqueous thermoplastic polyurethane dispersion is prepared from a non-yellowing diisocyanate, e.g. bis(4-isocyanatocyclohexyl), a diol (e.g. PPG2000), a difunctional hydrazine or hydrazide chain extender (e.g. 1,3-diaminourea) and a water solubilizing compound (e.g. dimethylolpropionic acid).  Together with a propellant the, composition is shelf-stable and can be aerosol-sprayed to form clear, non-yellowing protective films.

3M’s aerosol-sprayed protective film.

TPU Shrink Wrap

Title: TPU SHRINK MATERIAL

Number/Link: WO2017/108920

Applicant/Assignee: BASF

Publication Date: 29-jun-2017

“Gist”: Shape memory TPU is used as shrink wrap

Why it is interesting: A thermoplastic polyurethane with a shape-memory is prepared from a diisocyanate, a chain extender and a polyol comprising an ‘aromatic polyester block’, especially a polyethylenetherephthalate block. The composition is chosen such that the TPU has a melting point between 160 and 230ºC and another phase transition between 30 and 80ºC (the “switching temperature”). Films of this material are then stretched at a temperature higher than the switching temperature but below melt temperature and then cooled in stretched state. The stretched films are said to be useful as shrink wrap, especially for foodstuffs. No examples are given.
A surprising application for TPU but hardly a surprising TPU invention i.m.o.

Shrink-wrapped Helicopters (Wikipedia)