Vol. 22, No. 4
Books and Publications
Macromolecular Symposia, Vol. 147: Mechanical Behavior of Polymeric
Symposium Editor, Jaroslav Kahovec; Editor-in-Chief, Hartwig Hocker;
Editors, W. Guth, B. Jung, I. Meisel, and S. Spiegel. Published by WILEY-VCH,
December 1999, pp. 1-267. ISBN 3-527- 29907-6 (ISSN 1022-1360).
Lecturers and participants
at the 18th Discussion Conference held in Prague, Czech Republic.
Volume 147 of Macromolecular Symposia contains main and special lectures
delivered at the 18th Discussion Conference, organized as the 56th meeting
in the series of Prague Meetings on Macromolecules (PMM), held in Prague,
Czech Republic 20-23 July 1998, as usual under the auspices of IUPAC
at the Institute of Macromolecular Chemistry, Academy of Sciences of
the Czech Republic (see symposium report by Prof. Dr. G. H. Michler
published in Chemistry International
in July 1999, Vol. 21, No. 4, pp. 110-111).
> View Contents and Preface
The topic of the meeting and of this resultant volume, mechanical behavior
of polymeric materials, is an area that has an interesting long history
and tradition. From the very beginning, this field has been a meeting
place of experts from polymer synthesis, processing, and applications.
Indeed, mechanical characteristics are decisive for reliable functions
of polymers in virtually all application fieldsstarting from materials
for industrial structure parts through medical applications up to contemporary
media for data storage. In all these fields, mechanical failure can
cause extensive damage and heavy losses. Consequently, mechanical parameters
serve for optimization of technological processes, quality control,
and right design of dependable parts.
Mechanical behavior of polymeric materials depends on their structure.
The structure, in turn, must be considered at various levels: molecular,
supermolecular, crystalline, phase, up to microscopic cracks. Together
with the development of mechanical testing methods, a considerable body
of knowledge has subsequently been accumulated on interrelations between
the parameters of individual levels of hierarchical structure and macroscopic
mechanical behavior. This information allowed formulation of structure
models on one hand and application of mechanical methods for the characterization
of structure and structural dynamics on the other. The understanding
of structureproperty relationships finally allowed the development
of high-performance polymeric materials with dramatically enhanced strength,
toughness, durability, and reliability in comparison to classic polymers.
Quite logically, the study of mechanical behavior became an important
and respected branch of polymer physics.
The meeting that led to Volume 147 of Macromolecular Symposia attracted
127 participants from 24 countries. There were 10 main lectures, 10
special lectures, and 74 poster communications. Two panel discussions
were devoted to mechanical behavior of high-performance polymers (led
by A. Hiltner, United States) and strength and toughness of oriented
polymer systems, composites, and blends (led by H. H. Kausch, Switzerland).
All the contributions and discussions provided a gauge of the contemporary
understanding of structural micromechanisms responsible for macroscopic
molecular behavior. In particular, it is clear now that the assessment
of complex hierarchical structure is important for the formulation of
a realistic structure model of mechani-cal behavior. As expressed by
Prof. Eric Baer, only very few experts in mechanical behavior of polymers
did not come to Prague in the summer of 1998. The participants created
not only an excellent professional forum, but also very agreeable company.
We wish to express our gratitude to all participants and sponsors for
supporting the meeting, to the organizing committee for their very good
job, and to the contributors for their carefully prepared papers.
Drs.-Ing. Miroslav Raab and Jaroslav
Institute of Macromolecular Chemistry Academy of Sciences of the Czech