Gamma irradiation was investigated as a triggering stimulus for the activation of poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) microcapsules. PMMA was exposed to varying doses of irradiation and analyzed by differential scanning calorimetry, size-exclusion chromatography, and nuclear magnetic resonance. It was found that the glass transition temperature (Tg) of the polymer decreases at low irradiation doses. Additionally, Tg can be physically adjusted by adding a plasticizer, and both kinds of microcapsules were successfully prepared with non-plasticized and plasticized PMMA shell. Finally, impermeable microcapsules were shown to become permeable after irradiation and release an encapsulated cross-linker, which enables the remotely controlled formation of polydimethylsiloxanes in traditionally unavailable places. Therefore, the activation method has significant implications for industrial application.
- Controlled release
- Gamma irradiation