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Both oxidation and methoxymethylation of the surfaces of a series of MDI (methylene diphenyl isocyanate) and TDI (toluene diisocyanate) polyether and polyester soft segment 1–4 butanediol polyurethanes result in increased thermal stability as measured by TG. Explosive loss of mass above the hard segment melting temperature suggests that the diffusion of the dissociated diisocyanate moiety is hindered at lower temperatures. Thus suppression of the depolycondensation reaction by chemical blockage of the surface may result in a material with an increased service life at use temperatures as thermal stability of a polyurethane may depend upon the low diffusivity of its diisocyanate comonomer. The effect of vacuum, oxygen and water vapor on the kinetics of mass-loss of several of the polyurethanes is presented.

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