Polymer Journal #2

Specific Goal: To design a polymer who acts as a phone case and allows it to stick to flat surfaces. It should be easily attached and removed, also, it should be very durable even when exposed to air for a long period of time.

Targeted Audience: Millennials

Problems that will be solved by this polymer: When you put your phone on the table, it can be easily pushed off by mistake. But with this sticky phone case, it will prevent these kinds of accidents. Also, this phone case allows the phone to stick onto walls, this will be a huge convenience: people get to watch tv shows without holding the phone, or even follow tutorials (like a rubix cube video) without having to hold the phone with one hand.

(an example that is too sticky for our goal)

I think gloop works best for our design out of the three basic polymers. First of all, it can stick onto flat surfaces, and is not too sticky to cause a problem. Super slime doesn’t stick at all, and stretch-tastic slime is just a pain to remove. Second of all, gloop is the hardest of the three slimes. this is very important trait for a phone case, since no one wants to hold a soft and gross case. Finally, gloop has a better grip comparing the the others; the stretch tastic slime is just disgusting and it gets all over the place, and there’s a layer of sticky liquid on the super slime, which we don’t want that on our phones.

(gloop)

Polymer Journal #1

  1. What are polymers and how are they made? 

A polymer is a substance that is composed of many simple molecules bonded together called monomers (in other words, it’s when many molecules of a simple compound joined together). A single polymer molecule might consist of hundreds to millions of monomers and may have a linear, branched, or network structure. The amount of monomers in a polymer determines the so called degree of polymerization. When there’s a large amount of monomers in a polymer, it tends to have a high degree of polymerization and it’s called a high polymer.  

There are two ways a polymer can be created: 

  • Condensation polymerization reaction – A polymer is created, but also a small molecule is eliminated or lost.  
  • Addition polymerization – When two or more molecules joins together to form a single product. 

PVA Borax Polymer 

PVA solution can be made into a slime by adding borax. PVA is already a polymer, and in this case, it is providing back bone for the atoms that will be joined. When they are mixed, the chains of atoms becomes linked together. As a result, the new substance becomes more solid.  

 

Synthetic Materials

2. Synthetic materials are artificial materials made from different substances through polymerization. Synthetic materials are manmade and are not produced in the wild.

Two examples of synthetic material are rayon and polyester:

  • Polyester derives coal, air, water, and petroleum. The fibers of polyester are made during a chemical reaction between acid and alcohol. In the reaction, multiple molecules combine to form a larger molecule which will stand as the basis for polyester. The molecules are extremely strong and stable, making polyester non-absorbent and stretch resistant.
  • Rayon is comprised wood pulp or cotton. The chemical reaction for rayon to form is when cellulose, an organic compound found in wood pulp or cotton is extracted to form white sheets of pure cellulose. The sheets are then put in to sodium hydroxide. The sheets are then shredded and dried out to crumbs and are left in metal containers for a couple of days. It is then mixed with liquid carbon disulfide to make viscose solution which is then spun to yarn. 

3. Citations

“Unsafe Slime? How Bad Is Borax, Really?” The Chronicle Flask, 28 Dec. 2018, chronicleflask.com/2017/08/07/slime-safety/.

“Rayon.” How Products Are Made, www.madehow.com/Volume-1/Rayon.html.

“Polyester.” How Products Are Made, www.madehow.com/Volume-2/Polyester.html.

Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., kids.britannica.com/students/article/polymer/276496.

Where is the solar system should NASA focus on future missions?

NASA’s future research should focus on saturn’s rings.

Researched showed that a liquid ocean exists under the icy surface of Enceladus (a tiny encrusted ocean world that orbits saturn’s moon). Scientists found heavy presence of hydrogen beside the seafloor which means there might be chemical reactions that will support life. “Future missions to explore oceans beyond earth will answer many of these questions.” said Seewald.

Like he said, this research will help us uncover the unknown of our solar system, and solve problems that seems impossible. For example, hydrogen proves to us that life beyond earth might exist, and it is possible for us to find a place that supports life to settle.