Catalysts aged for different time periods (0, 5, 15, 40, 80 and 160 days) and different temperatures (10, 25 and 40 °C) were tested in the cis-1,4 polymerization of 1,3-butadiene. The catalytic activity and polymer characteristics (molecular weight and microstructure) were evaluated. The results showed that the catalyst ageing did not affect the polymer microstructure. The cis-1,4 content remained at 98%, trans-1,4 at 1,4% and vinyl units at 0,6%. However, the catalysts aged for 40 days produced polybutadienes with higher molecular weight. Also observed was a tendency to an increased polymerization conversion by the catalysts aged at 25 °C.
High-cis polybutadiene; Ziegler-Natta catalyst; neodymium; catalyst ageing