Fast and accurate monitoring of monomer concentration during copolymerization reactions is of much interest. It is known that near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) can be used to monitor polymerization reactions. Here, a free radical solution copolymerization reaction between methyl methacrylate and<i> N,N</i>-dimethylacrylamide is considered. NIR spectra were measured in-line with a transflectance probe. The spectra of both involved monomers are very similar, making monitoring with NIRS challenging. It is shown that the NIRS calibration can be set up with only a few (5) off-line measured mixtures. Several validation methods for such a NIRS calibration model are discussed and tested. NIRS is used to follow conversion of the two monomers in a copolymerization reaction on-line.
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