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 Edward Long, Wesley P. Hoffman, Dennis W. Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Citations (Scopus)


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
Pages (from-to)622-628
Number of pages7
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Feb 3
Externally publishedYes


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

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Organic Chemistry
  • Polymers and Plastics


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