This paper is devoted to a molecular description of the deformation of amorphous isotropic poly(ethylene terephthalate) (PET) films at temperatures slightly above the glass transition temperature under constant load. The deformation is qualitatively described by chain relaxation phenomena occurring before stress-induced crystallization, which are followed by the equilibration of a rubber-like network. The junction points include both trapped entanglements and crystalline units. The structure of this network is characterized by the number of segments between crosslinks. This parameter is calculated by comparing the predictions of the rubber elasticity theory (without Gaussian approximation) with the experimentally observed draw ratios under given conditions of temperatures and loads. It is shown that light loads induce soft networks leading to high draw ratios. The predictions of the molecular orientation derived from this treatment are in good agreement with birefringence data on a large variety of samples.
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Molecular description of constant-load stretching of amorphous poly(ethylene terephthalate) films / G. Lorentz and J. F. Tassin // Polymer. – 1994. – Vol 35. – P. 3200-3205.
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