Umeda R.E., Schiavon M.I.R.B., Munhoz A.L., Maciel Filho R., Wolf Maciel M.R., 2022, Simulation of Hydrolytic Ring Opening Polymerization of Nylon 12 from Laurolactam, Chemical Engineering Transactions, 92, 613-618.
The pandemic caused by COVID-19 resulted in a significant shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) and additive manufacturing (AM) has been used to produce masks and face shields quickly and with quality. A widely used input is Nylon 12, a polyamide with excellent mechanical properties, low toxicity, better adapting to PPE by AM compared to other polyamides. It is frequently obtained from ring opening polymerization (ROP) route from laurolactam and can be derived from both petroleum and renewable sources. There is a great challenge toward few studies related to the production of Nylon 12 and mainly laurolactam monomer derived from renewable sources. This work aims to simulate the production of Nylon 12 by hydrolytic ROP in the Aspen Polymer Plus® simulator. A sensitivity analysis was carried out investigating the variation of the conversion, number average molecular weight, and number average degree polymerization, providing a better understanding of the process. Based on the results, it is concluded that the simulation is viable, since it was observed a formation of a polymer with high conversion and molecular weight according to experimental data.