Poly (acrylonitrile-Co-1-vinylimidazole): A new melt processable carbon fiber precursor

Wenjin Deng, Alexander Lobovsky, Scott T. Iacono, Tianyu Wu, Neetu Tomar, Stephen M. Budy, Timothy Long, Wesley P. Hoffman, Dennis W. Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Scopus citations


Acrylonitrile/1-vinylimidazole (AN/VIM) copolymers containing various mol% of VIM were synthesized by free radical solution polymerization. The copolymers were characterized by Attenuated Total Reflectance-Fourier Transform Infrared (ATR-FTIR) spectroscopy, 1H NMR spectroscopy, gel permeation chromatography (GPC) and differential scanning calorimetry (DSC). Char yields of the copolymers were 40-48% as determined by thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) while gel fractions were found to be 90-99% depending upon the composition, temperature and time. The complex viscosity of the precursor copolymers was measured as a function of composition and temperature. 82/18 mol% of AN/VIM copolymer based carbon fiber precursor was successfully processed by solvent-free melt spinning at 192 °C and the melt-spun fiber was characterized by DSC, ATR-IR, and X-ray Diffraction (XRD).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)622-628
Number of pages7
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 3 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Carbon fiber precursor
  • Melt processable
  • Thermal cross-linking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Organic Chemistry
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Materials Chemistry


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