Microwave-Assisted Synthesis of Polyesters and Polyamides by Ring-Opening Polymerization

  • Martin Fimberger
  • Frank WiesbrockEmail author
Part of the Advances in Polymer Science book series (POLYMER, volume 274)


Microwave-assisted heating has been described as an efficient heating technique that can enhance the reaction rate for many reactions. Consequently, it is a key strategy for ring-opening polymerizations, which are often limited by low polymerization rates. This review summarizes recent efforts in the field of microwave-assisted polyester and polyamide syntheses from cyclic monomers and dimers, with a broad focus on poly(lactic acid)s and poly(ε-caprolactone)s. Homo- and copolymerizations as well as graft polymerizations are discussed. Both the polymerizations themselves as well as the preparation of composites/materials are addressed. Special attention is directed towards the discussion of non-thermal microwave effects.


Microwave-assisted polymerization Non-thermal microwave effects Polyamide Polyester Ring-opening polymerization 



(d/l)-lactic acid


Conventional heating




Molar mass dispersity




Dimethyl sulfoxide




Differential scanning calorimetry


Glycolic acid


Infrared (spectroscopy)


Liquid chromatography under critical conditions


Matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization


Mass-average molecular weight


Number-average molecular weight


Methoxylated poly(ethylene glycol)


Viscosity-average molecular weight






Poly((d/l)-lactic acid)


Poly(acrylic acid)






Poly(ethylene glycol)


Poly(ethylene terephthalate)


Poly(glycolic acid)


Poly(hydroxy alkanoate)


Poly(lactic-co-glycolic) acid




Poly(trimethylene carbonate)


Poly(vinyl alcohol)


Ring-opening polymerization


Simulated body fluid


Size exclusion chromatography


Scanning electron microscopy




Transmission electron microscopy


Glass-transition temperature


Thermogravimetric analysis




Melting temperature


Trimethylene carbonate


Time of flight (spectroscopy)




X-ray diffraction


β-Tricalcium phosphate



The research work was performed within the K-Project “PolyComp” and at the Polymer Competence Center Leoben GmbH (PCCL, Austria) within the framework of the COMET-program of the Federal Ministry for Transport, Innovation and Technology and the Federal Ministry for Economy, Family and Youth, with contributions by the Graz University of Technology and Infineon Technologies Austria AG. Funding of the K-Project “PolyComp” is provided by the Austrian Government and the State Government of Styria; the PCCL is funded by the Austrian Government and the State Governments of Styria, Lower Austria, and Upper Austria.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Polymer Competence Center LeobenLeobenAustria
  2. 2.Graz University of Technology, Institute for Chemistry and Technology of MaterialsNAWI GrazGrazAustria

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