Synthesis, curing and physical behaviour of maleimide-terminated poly(ether ketones)

G. D. Lyle, J. S. Senger, D. H. Chen, S. Kilic, S. D. Wu, D. K. Mohanty, J. E. McGrath

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37 Scopus citations


Maleimide-terminated amorphous poly(arylene ether sulphones) and poly(arylene ether ketones) of controlled M ̄n (2000-10000 or higher) were synthesized by nucleophilic aromatic substitution, step polymerization and bisphenol A phenolate with activated aromatic halides in the presence of m-aminophenol or 2,2′-(4-aminophenyl-4-hydroxyphenyl)propane. The amine-terminated oligomers of predictable molecular weight were then converted to maleimides. This 'two-step' method was accomplished by reacting the terminal amine with maleic anhydride in a co-solvent of N-methylpyrrolidone N-cyclohexyl pyrrolidone ( 80 20). A second 'one-step' oligomer synthesis method employed either m-maleimidophenol or 2,2′-(4-maleimido-4′-hydroxyphenyl)propane as the 'monofunctional' end-capper. The oligomers were thermally crosslinked through a free-radical reaction of the maleimide end-groups. Curing at 250°C for 1 h produced networks which were 98% chloroform-insoluble. The influence of oligomer molecular weight on the thermal and mechanical properties of the solvent-resistant networks was investigated by differential scanning calorimetry, dynamic mechanical thermal analysis, flexural modulus and fracture toughness, KIC. Very substantial increases in toughness were observed relative to simple bismaleimides and were a function of the molecular weight between crosslinks ( M ̄c) and the β-relaxation of the matrix.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)978-985
Number of pages8
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1989


  • bismaleimides
  • fracture toughness
  • functional oligomers
  • poly(ether ketones)
  • thermosets


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