As the RAFT agents used are typically quite hydrophobic, an acetone transport technique was developed to assist the transport of the RAFT agent into the latex particles [1].

  • start with a polystyrene seed latex (dead polymer)
  • water is added (to final dilution of latex)
  • acetone is added (20% w/w on total water)
  • RAFT agent added (as crystals)
  • mixture stirred for 24 to 72 hours
  • acetone assists RAFT agent transport into latex particles; particles contain RAFT agent
  • rotary evaporator used to strip acetone from latex (1.5 × mass of acetone removed)
  • seed latex topped up with water
  • monomer added to mixture with stirring
  • particles swell over time, so there are no monomer droplets left
  • seed now ready for use in reactions


  1. Successful use of RAFT techniques in seeded emulsion polymerization of styrene: living character, RAFT agent transport and rate of polymerization. SW Prescott, MJ Ballard, E Rizzardo and RG Gilbert. Macromolecules, 35(14), 5417–5425, 2002.

Last edited: Tuesday September 9, 2008

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