Traditional polyetherimides (PEIs) are synthesized from an aromatic diamine and an aromatic dianhydride (e.g. 3,4'-oxydianiline and 4,4'-oxydiphtalic anhydride) leading to the imide linkage and outstanding chemical, thermal and mechanical properties yet with a complete absence of self-healing functionality. In this work we have replaced the traditional aromatic diamine by an aliphatic dimer diamine made from renewable resources. Such an approach led to the synthesis of a whole family of self-healing polymers capable of healing at room temperature or at elevated temperatures and ranging from relatively soft elastomers to rigid polymers depending on the composition. Here we report preliminary data showing the effect of the offset from the theoretical stoichiometric ratio on the general performance and healing behaviour of a room temperature healing polyetherimide. The systems with a slight excess of branched linear diamine and a post treatment of 12 hours at 150 °C showed the highest stress-strain properties (8 MPa and 500% elongation at break at 80 mm/min in tensile mode) with a recovery of properties close to 50% after 24 hours of pressure-less healing at room temperature. Lower initial properties yet higher healing efficiencies are obtained for shorter post annealing treatments.
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