Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research, Vol.59, No.4, 1730-1735, 2020
Pilot Plant Study on the Polymerization of Isobutene Using Silica-Supported Methylaluminoxane
Pilot plant scale studies on the polymerization of isobutene in n-hexane, induced by silica-supported methylaluminoxane and 2-bromobutane, were conducted in a stirred 7.5 L kettle reactor. Experimentation involved batch style reaction for both single and multiple/sequential runs. Conversion to the polymer was quantitative in all instances, and polymer molecular weights (MWs) are quite favorable for the reaction temperatures employed. Additionally, polymerization was well-behaved, giving rise to a consistent product from one run to another and tests show that the system is potentially suitable for continuous production methods. Due to the heterogeneous nature of the initiator system, high-purity polyisobutene was obtained by simple filtration of the reaction mixture followed by volatilization of solvent.