Term of Award

Summer 2021

Degree Name

Master of Science, Applied Physical Science

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (open access)

Copyright Statement / License for Reuse

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.


Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry

Committee Chair

Rafael L. Quirino

Committee Member 1

Shainaz Landge

Committee Member 2

Ji Wu


Most current research in the area of sustainable and environmentally friendly materials relate to the use of renewable sources for the fabrication of bio-based polymers and composites. Using plant-based derivatives is a common strategy. Pine sap can be distilled into turpentines (light fraction) and pine rosin (heavy fraction). Pine rosin is obtained as a brittle solid and its major component is abietic acid. This project aims at investigating a synthetic approach for the synthesis of a pine rosin-based polymer that can be potentially used for manufacturing a collection device for pine sap. The synthetic strategy consisted in the preparation of tung oil abietate in two steps. The first step leads to tung oil diglyceride from the transesterification of tung oil with glycerol. Confirmation of the formulated tung oil diglyceride was given by analyzing the compound with Fourier Transmission Infrared and Raman Spectroscopy, Gas Chromatography, Nuclear Magnetic Resonance analysis, Thermal Gravimetric Analysis and Differential Scanning Calorimetry analysis. The second step converts tung oil diglyceride into tung oil abietate via an acid-catalyzed esterification with pine rosin. Confirmation of the tung oil abietate went through Fourier Transmission Infrared and Raman Spectroscopy, Nuclear Magnetic Resonance analysis, Thermal Gravimetric Analysis and Differential Scanning Calorimetry analysis. By developing a monomer that combined the two compounds, it was believed that pine rosin could be developed into a functional polymer. The approach investigated involves the bulk free radical co-polymerization of pine rosin with n-butyl methacrylate and divinylbenzene. Di-tert-butyl peroxide was used as the free radical initiator. Through observation alone the tung oil abietate polymer appeared almost black and hard to the touch. Using a thermal analysis to confirm formation of the polymer, the Thermal Gravimetric Analyzer and Differential Scanning Calorimetry instrument were used. Both instruments gave positive results that the polymer was cured completely using 140 ℃ at an 18hr interval.

OCLC Number


Research Data and Supplementary Material