A thermogravimetric study of the decomposition rate of chlorinated polyethylenes under ignition conditions

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Decomposition and combustion of three chlorinated polyethylenes (C1PE-25%, C1PE-36% and C1PE-42%) and a high density polyethylene (HDPE) under medium heating rates (11.5-67.5°C (s-1) in an oxidant gas flow was investigated using a Du Pont 951 thermogravimetric analyzer (TGA). The decomposition rate constants prior to ignition and during combustion were obtained using an Avrami-Erofee'v type equation, [- In(1 - C)] 1 n= kt + A where n was chosen equal to four. The results showed that the rate constant was sensitive to the isothermal furnace temperature only if a small sample mass (about 2.40 mg) was used. Increasing O2 concentration in the gas flow greatly promoted the decomposition rate prior to ignition, but was less significant in the combustion stage. The rate of decomposition for HDPE was much higher than that of the chlorinated polyethylenes, indicating the effectiveness of substituted chlorine in suppressing the decomposition rate of the polymers. On the other hand, increasing the chlorine content from 36 to 42% did not reduce the decomposition rate further under our conditions. © 1988.

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Thermochimica Acta