pH-sensitive cellulose fibre-supported hydrogels were prepared by ozone-induced graft polymerization of acrylic acid using cotton linters and wood pulp fibre substrates. An average amount of grafting of 60% was achieved on to the ozonized wood pulp fibres after only 1 min of graft polymerization. Grafted polyacrylic acid completely covered the cellulose fibre surfaces, as determined with electron spectroscopy for chemical analysis (ESCA) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The X-ray mapping of neutralized grafted fibres showed that polyacrylic acid was present not only at the surface but was also homogeneously distributed within the pores of the fibres. Exposure of the grafted fibres to alkali and subsequent drying resulted in a irreversible deformation of the fibre-supported hydrogel. A fibre-supported hydrogel which exhibited a reversible swelling and deswelling was prepared by an addition of a bifunctional monomer, ethyleneglycol dimethacrylate (EDMA), to the monomer solution used for grafting. Such muscle-like expanding and contraction was also stimulated by pH changes in the environment.
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ELSEVIER Cellulose fibre-supported pH-sensitive hydrogels / J. 0. Karlsson, P. Gatenholm // Polymer. – 1999. – N 40. – P. 379–387.