1070-4272/02/7502-0333 $27.00 C 2002 MAIK [Nauka/Interperiodica]
Russian Journal of Applied Chemistry, Vol. 75, No. 2, 2002, pp. 333!334. Translated from Zhurnal Prikladnoi Khimii, Vol. 75, No. 2, 2002,
Original Russian Text Copyright + 2002 by Zaikov, Gumargalieva, Artsis.
XXII Danube Region Colloquium
on Natural and Artificial Degradation of Polymers
The XXII Danube Region Colloquium on Natu-
ral and Artificial Degradation of Polymers was held
from September 17 to 18, 2001, at the Federal Insti-
tute for Materials Research and Testing in Berlin
(Germany). The Organizing Committee Chairman
was Dr. P. Trubiroha. The Colloquium was sponsored
by several German research centers. The Colloquium
title is of purely historical origin: in the early 1960s,
scientists from Austria, Germany, and Hungary or-
ganized the first colloquium and named it for the
Danube River running across these countries. Now
this is an all-Europe conference; however, the origi-
nal title remained.
Among the conference participants were more than
500 scientists from nine European Countries (Austria,
Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, the Netherlands,
Russia, Slovak Republic, Sweden, and Switzerland),
representing 30 research centers. In all, there were
given 25 lectures devoted to thermal, thermooxidative,
photooxidative, biological, hydrolytic, and mechani-
cally induced polymer degradation.
The subject of the report delivered by D. Kockott
(Germany) was comparison of natural and artificial
aging from the standpoint of using accelerated aging
methods for prediction of useful life and shelf-life of
polymer articles. J. Boxhammer (Germany) examined
in his report accelerated photodegradation of polymers
as a way to develop new methods for express evalua-
tion of the photostability of polymer articles in use.
The problem of fast test calibration for express evalua-
tion of polymer stability was examined in the report
presented by a group of authors [G. Pausch (Germany),
R. Raymond, and P. Brennan (the United States)].
Much attention was given by the participants to a
report by P. Trubiroha on the kinetic features and
mechanism of polymer photodegradation and a search
for methods for photostabilization of polymer articles.
J. Boxhammer’s second contribution concerned the
use of various simulated-climate chambers for ac-
celeration of polymer degradation and correlation of
the data obtained with natural polymer degradation.
The same problems were examined in the report by
T. Raabe (Germany).
The effects of temperature and humidity on poly-
mer photodegradation were considered by U. Schultz
(Germany) who demonstrated that these factors con-
siderably accelerate photodegradation. In the report
presented by I. Jakubowicz (Sweden), special empha-
sis was placed on degradation and stabilization of
polyvinyl chloride (PVC).
The problems of accelerated degradation of poly-
mers used in the automobile industry were considered
by T. Franz (Switzerland).
A series of the conference contributions were
devoted to polymer biodegradation. Specifically,
K.Z. Gumargalieva, G.E. Zaikov, and S.A. Semenov
considered the interaction of fungi with polymer, par-
ticularly PVC, surface; and the report by I. Stephan
(Germany) focused on preparation of biofilms through
adhesion of microorganisms to the surface of various
The participants showed considerable interest in
the results reported by a group of authors [J. Pospisil,
S. Nespurek, Z. Horak, Z. Krulis (Czech Republic),
and W.D. Habicher (Germany)] on the effects of
polymer matrix and testing conditions on the behavior
and useful life of stabilizers for polymers.
A series of contributions were devoted to the prob-
lems of environmental protection and interaction of
polymers with polluted atmosphere. T.F. Reichert and
U. Pohsner (Germany) reported the effect of the type
of air pollution on selection of polymers sufficiently
resistant against a given type of pollution. U. Schultz
considered the part played by acid rains in polymer
photodegradation, and V. Wachtendorf reported the
development of new polymeric coatings stable in
polluted environment (tests were performed in the
US). P. Truberoha, U. Schultz, and V. Wachtendorf
reported the effect of acid rains on degradation of
polymer films for agricultural use. The effects of
various additives on accelerated degradation of poly-
mers were analyzed by M. Zah (Germany).
W. Bachleitner and L. Kranner (Austria) focused
in their report on natural and accelerated degradation
of polycarbonate, and G. Kalinka, on the study of de-