Date of Award

Spring 5-10-2019

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)



First Advisor

Dr. Ram Gupta

Second Advisor

Dr. Khamis Siam

Third Advisor

Dr. Pawan Kahol

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Anuradha Ghosh


A novel bio-based polyol was synthesized using corn oil and 2-mercaptoethanol via thiol-ene reaction as an alternative to petroleum-based polyol for the synthesis of polyurethane foams. The polyol was analyzed using wet chemical techniques to obtain a hydroxyl number and the viscosity of the polyol. Infrared spectroscopy and gel permeation chromatography were used to confirm the structural properties of the foams. Flame-retardant polyurethane foams were prepared by the addition of different concentrations of dimethyl methyl phosphonate (DMMP) in the final foam composition. The effect of DMMP on the thermo-mechanical properties of the polyurethane foams was analyzed. The TGA analysis showed improved stability of the final char with the addition of DMMP in the foams. All the foams maintained a well-defined cellular structure and over 95% of closed cell content. The horizontal burning test showed reduced burning time and weight loss from 115 s and 38 wt% for the neat foams to 3.5 s and 5.5 wt% for DMMP containing foams (1.94 wt% P). The combustion test using a cone calorimeter showed a considerable reduction in heat release rate and total heat release. Thus, our study shows that corn oil-based polyol can be used to produce renewable polyol for industrially producible rigid polyurethane foams. The addition of a small amount of DMMP could result in a significant reduction in flame retardant properties of the polyurethane foams.



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