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Sodium Polyacrylate

Chem 12 project
by

Ines Hamam

on 7 November 2012

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Transcript of Sodium Polyacrylate

Sodium Polyacrylate History Reaction Mechanism Conclusion Introduction Sodium polyacrylate is a polymer made up of one repeating formula, linked together in a long flexible chain.

It is a substance commonly used in manufacturing industries and it is most notably known for being used in the making of diapers. Until the 1970s, cellulosic or fiber-based products were used for water absorption.

In the early 1960s, the USDA conducted research to develop a super absorbent polymer.

Robert Niles Bashaw, Bobby Leroy Atkins, and Billy Gene Harper are considered the first inventors of sodium polyacrylate.

Synthesised for the Dow Chemical Company in 1966; oldest patent record. Properties Physical Properties When dry: White powder When wet: Gel like substance Dissolution of polyacrylate Chemical Formula: [-CH2-CH(COONa)-]n - Density:1.22g/cm3 - Non-toxic Applications Thickening agent Sequestering agent Fuel Tanks Astronaut suit Special effect Toys Coating Agriculture Fake snows It only began to be used commercially In the early 1970s when Victor Mills applied their usage in the creation of disposable diapers.

BY 1957, Mills was 60 and had been working for P&G for 31 years

P&G had recently acquired Charmin Paper Company

Victor Mills is the man who gave the world Pampers. 1966 •Sodium polyacrylate is a polymer made of a long chain of acrylic acid.

Sodium polyacrylate is synthesized mainly through the process of emulsion polymerization. Emulsion An emulsion is mixture of two or more liquids that are normally immiscible


One liquid is dispersed and held inside of another liquid by a substance called the emulsifier (surfactant). Polymerization 1. A surfactant is dissolved in water and forms micelles.

2. The monomer and the free radical initiator are added.

3. The initiator travels into the micelles and reacts with the monomer molecules polyacrylic acid + sodium hydroxide ---> sodium polyacrylate + water + O + H O 2 2 1.5 acrylic acid acrlyic acid monomer unit propene + oxygen ----> acrylic acid + water Controversies Sodium atoms are
linked to oxygen atoms The link breaks when
it dissolves in water :The polymer is folded
in a dense coil Powder state When it dissolves in water, sodium detaches from polymer and the chain becomes negatively charged and unfolded. Gel state: Other Properties - Absorbs as much as 300 times its mass in tap water and 800 times for distilled water. Na Polymer Applications FDA Approval
GRAS (Generally Recognized As Safe. Health

Sodium polyacrylate in diapers is a contributing factor of staph infections.

It is able to absorb all of the oils and moisture from the skin.

This is expected considering that babies wear them constantly for years. Environment
They account for an estimated 2% of the garbage generated in the U.S. Every baby uses 8-10 diapers per day.

Also, if the chemical enters sewer or drainage systems it will swell up and cause serious clogging.



Since it has only been used in the past couple decades, the full affect of sodium polyacrylate are have yet to be fully known. It is a synthetic substance.

Its distinguished properties make it commercially valuable

Concerns about its effects on human health and the environment. Sodium polyacrylate in its gel form Nappy rash caused by wet skin was a real problem, and the task of washing cloth nappies was causing a considerable workload for hospital laundry services.

Today Sodium Polyacryate is now used in many commercial products Sodium polyacarylate is man-made substance first invented in 1966 but started to be used in industries in 1970s.

It is a known as SAP (Super absorbent polymer) due to its special ability to absorb up to 800 times its mass in water.

Polymer is synthesized from its monomer, acrylic acid, through the process of emulsion polymerization.

It has a variety of industrial uses.

Since it has been used for a short period of time, we should be cautious of its potential harm.
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