Macromolecules, Vol.54, No.1, 214-224, 2021
Self-Optimization of the Shape-Memory Effect during Programming Cycle Tests
Thermoresponsive shape-memory polymers (TSMPs) are materials that can memorize temporary shapes and can restore to their permanent shapes upon stimulus. This ability is driven by reversible deformation (epsilon(re)); however, the deformation of TSMPs inevitably involves unfavorable irreversible deformation (epsilon(ir)). Consequently, avoiding the epsilon(ir) through macromolecular chemistry or/and physical blending has been the currently efficient methodology for designing or fabricating TSMPs. Herein, we report another methodology, programming cycle tests (PCT), which can select and remove unfavorable epsilon(ir), thus taking the shape-memory performance to its limits. Moreover, PCT is a physical process that only involves a series of successive thermomechanical cycles. Therefore, this study provides a simple and efficient methodology for designing and fabricating TSMPs.