; Tang, Yujing
; Men, Yongfeng] CAS, SKLPPC, CIAC, Changchun 130022, Peoples R China
; [Rieger, Jens] BASF SE, D-67056 Ludwigshafen, Germany
; [Enderle, Hans-Friedrich
; Lilge, Dieter] Basell Polyolefine GmbH, R&D, D-65926 Frankfurt, Germany
; [Roth, Stephan V.
; Gehrke, Rainer] HASYLAB DESY, D-22607 Hamburg, Germany
; [Wu, Zhonghua
; Li, Zhihong] CAS, Inst High Energy Phys, BSRF, Beijing 100039, Peoples R China
; [Li, Xiuhong] CAS, Shanghai Inst Appl Phys, SSRF, Shanghai 201800, Peoples R China
The morphological development of melt-drawn transparent high-density polyethylene during heating was investigated employing in-situ synchrotron small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) technique. The results confirm that at lower temperatures only meridional scattering peaks aligned perpendicular to the extensional flow direction can be observed, indicating a highly oriented lamellar crystallite structure; whereas at higher temperatures an equatorial streak additional to the layer-like meridional scattering pattern develops, reflecting the presence of shish-kebab-like objects in the specimen under investigation. Upon heating, the average thickness of the kebab crystals remains essentially unaffected below 110 degrees C, and subsequently the selective melting of the less stable kebabs proceeds yielding thicker layered lamellar crystals. When the temperature is raised to 131 degrees C, the shish-like formation and the thermally stable kebab crystals melt simultaneously. In addition, the microstructure of the melt-drawn specimen subjected to annealing at elevated temperatures was probed at room temperature. As opposed to the SAXS patterns registered at high temperatures, the SAXS diagram measured after annealing shows no equatorial streak, suggesting that the cylindrical structures could be re-formed. This observation can be explained by assuming that the plate-like kebab crystals with their normal parallel to the stretching direction grow and impinge during cooling to room temperature due to secondary crystallization, which can be verified by in-situ SAXS experiments during annealing and subsequent cooling. (C) 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.