Mechanical recycling is an easy and economic way to re-use plastic waste as secondary materials, but, in general, their properties are worse with respect to the reclaimed materials and the virgin polymer. The aim of this work was to study the effect of concentration and reaction kinetics of two additives, an ethylene-co-glycidyl methacrylate (Lotader) and a hydroxylamine derivative (CGX), in the re-building of a degraded polyethylene. CGX is a nitroxyl radical generator able to form branching in polyolefins while the epoxy groups of Lotader can react with the functional groups present in the recycled polyethylene. The results indicate that the CGX has a higher reaction rate than Lotader, probably due to its lower molecular weight and the different reaction path. As for the effect of concentration, as expected, a higher amount of additive accelerates and increases re-building, especially when CGX is used. The melt strength increases with the additive content and the mechanical properties show a significant reduction at the highest concentrations of both additives due to excessive cross-linking.
Scaffaro, R., Dintcheva, N., La Mantia, F. (2006). On the effectiveness of different additives and concentrations on the re-building of the molecular structure of degraded polyethylene. POLYMER DEGRADATION AND STABILITY, 91(12), 3110-3116 [10.1016/j.polymdegradstab.2006.07.022].