Before synthetic Polymers like polyethene and Perspex hit the market, naturally occurring Polymers like cotton, starch, and rubber were widely used materials. By chemically altering naturally existing Polymers, several economically significant Polymers are created. Two notable instances are the creation of nitrocellulose by the interaction of nitric acid and cellulose, and the vulcanization of rubber caused by heating natural rubber in the presence of sulphur.
There are several ways to alter Polymers, including oxidation, cross-linking, and end-capping. A Polymers architecture and structure, which are related to how branch points cause a departure from a basic linear chain, are key microstructural characteristics. A branched polymer molecule consists of a primary chain and one or more side chains or branches that are substitutes. Star Polymers, comb Polymers, polymer brushes, dendronized Polymers, ladder Polymers, and dendrimers are examples of branched Polymers.
There are also topologically planar repeat-based two-dimensional Polymers (2DP) in existence. Numerous physical characteristics of a polymer, such as solution viscosity, melt viscosity, solubility in different solvents, glass-transition temperature, and the size of individual polymer coils in solution, are influenced by the architecture of the polymer. For the production of a polymeric material with a diversity of architectures, a number of approaches, such as live polymerization, may be used.