Evonik’s methacrylate monomers are widely used in polymer composites as reactive diluents, crosslinkers, and raw materials for polymer synthesis. Basic methacrylates such as VISIOMER® MMA are widely utilized as co-monomers with styrene in unsaturated polyesters resins (UPR) for enhanced weather resistance of gelcoats and laminate resins. VISIOMER® GMAA is used in the synthesis of vinylester (VE) resin backbones and also as a co-monomer with acrylonitrile in the production of the carbon fiber precursor, polyacrylonitrile (PAN).
The usage of styrene as a reactive diluent for UPR and VE resins has recently come under increased environmental and regulatory scrutiny. Evonik provides a wide variety of low volatility and low odor monomers for the partial or full replacement of styrene. Crosslinkers such as VISIOMER® 1,4-BDDMA can be used to improve the mechanical properties of styrene based systems. Alternatively, these type crosslinkers can be used in conjunction with other methacrylate monomers, such as VISIOMER® HPMA 98, to create low odor styrene free resins. The required blending of monomers to replace styrene allows for optimization of specific desired properties like flexural strength or UV resistance.