Introduction to polymers
Introduction to polymers

This free course is available to start right now. Review the full course description and key learning outcomes and create an account and enrol if you want a free statement of participation.

Free course

Introduction to polymers

2.3 Chain configuration

The structure of repeat units is fixed by the chemical bonds between adjacent atoms. The shape or shapes thus created is known as the configuration, and for chains will be the chain configuration. Like children's plastic building blocks, however, there can be many different configurations for a given set of atoms of a particular type. The different structures which have identical chemical formulae are known as isomers, and such isomers can have quite different properties. Isomerism becomes an important structural feature as the complexity of molecules increases, and is thus very important for long polymer chains. There are various types of isomerism of especial interest for polymers, all essentially based on the nature of the carbon bond and the way carbon bonds are oriented in space.

T838_1

For further information, take a look at our frequently asked questions which may give you the support you need.

Have a question?
Free Courses

OpenLearn has over 800 free courses across all our subjects designed by our academic experts. From 1 to 100 hours, introductory to advanced, you can start learning at any time and all for free.