Polymers problems and solutions

Question 1: What is a polymer?

Solution: A polymer is a large molecule, or macromolecule, composed of many repeated subunits, known as monomers.

Question 2: What is a monomer?

Solution: A monomer is a molecule that can bind chemically to other molecules to form a polymer.

Question 3: What is polymerization?

Solution: Polymerization is the process of combining many small molecules known as monomers into a covalently bonded chain or network.

Question 4: Differentiate between addition polymerization and condensation polymerization.

Solution: In addition polymerization, monomers add together to form a polymer without the loss of any other atoms. In condensation polymerization, monomers join together to form a polymer along with the elimination of a small molecule, such as water.

Question 5: What are natural polymers? Give examples.

Solution: Natural polymers are those found in nature, often within organisms. Examples include DNA, proteins, cellulose, and natural rubber.

Question 6: What are synthetic polymers? Give examples.

Solution: Synthetic polymers are those made by humans in industrial settings. Examples include plastics like polyethylene, polypropylene, and PVC.

Question 7: What are biopolymers?

Solution: Biopolymers are polymers produced by living organisms. They include proteins, nucleic acids, and polysaccharides.

Question 8: What is a copolymer?

Solution: A copolymer is a polymer derived from two (or more) monomeric species.

Question 9: What is meant by the degree of polymerization?

Solution: The degree of polymerization is the number of monomeric units in a polymer.

Question 10: What are elastomers?

Solution: Elastomers are a type of polymer that exhibits viscoelasticity, meaning they can regain their original shape after being stretched or deformed.

Question 11: What are thermoplastic and thermosetting polymers?

Solution: Thermoplastic polymers soften when heated and harden when cooled, a process that is reversible and can be repeated. Thermosetting polymers harden when heated and remain hard even upon subsequent heating.

Question 12: What is cross-linking in polymers?

Solution: Cross-linking is the process of chemically joining two or more polymer chains together, resulting in a three-dimensional network of chains. This can enhance the properties of the polymer, such as its strength and stability.

Question 13: What are the properties of polymers?

Solution: Properties of polymers include a broad range of physical attributes, including resistance to chemicals, thermal and electrical insulation properties, toughness, elasticity, and translucency or transparency.

Question 14: What is plastic?

Solution: Plastic is a material consisting of any wide range of synthetic or semi-synthetic polymers that can be molded into solid objects of diverse shapes.

Question 15: What are biodegradable polymers?

Solution: Biodegradable polymers are polymers that can be broken down by the action of microorganisms, typically into carbon dioxide, water, and biomass.

Question 16: What is vulcanization?

Solution: Vulcanization is a chemical process for converting natural rubber or related polymers into more durable materials via the addition of sulfur or other equivalent curatives.

Question 17: What is the molecular weight of polymers?

Solution: The molecular weight of a polymer is the mass of one molecule of that polymer, summed over all the atoms in a representative sample of the polymer.

Question 18: What is the significance of crystallinity in polymers?

Solution: Crystallinity in polymers is the degree of structural order in a polymer. It significantly affects the physical properties of the polymer such as density, transparency, and chemical resistance.

Question 19: What are composite materials?

Solution: Composite materials are materials made from two or more constituent materials with significantly different physical or chemical properties, that when combined, produce a material with characteristics different from the individual components.

Question 20: What are the uses of polymers?

Solution: Polymers have a wide range of applications that include, but are not limited to, packaging, clothing, transportation, construction, electronics, aerospace, and biomedical applications.

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