Universiteit Leiden

nl en


Van Marum Colloquium: Large-Scale Polymer Synthesis by Reversible Deactivation Radical Polymerizations with Molecular Oxygen Reduction Reaction

Wednesday 10 July 2024
Gorlaeus Building
Einsteinweg 55
2333 CC Leiden


This lecture focuses on advanced methods in polymer chemistry, particularly integrating Cu-mediated Atom Transfer Radical Polymerization (ATRP) with Oxygen Reduction Reaction (ORR) to achieve large-scale, oxygen-tolerant polymer synthesis. ATRP is a key technique for advanced polymer synthesis. Integrating ORR with ATRP is a significant advancement, particularly in aqueous environments, by converting oxygen into hydrogen peroxide and subsequently into benign by-products like water, carbon dioxide, and sodium acetate. Water, being the greenest and least expensive solvent, is one of the most suitable for polymer synthesis. ORR enables the scalability of ATRP processes to large scales without the need for deoxygenation, including applications up to 15 liters in homogenous conditions or 10 L in emulsion. 

A comparative analysis of electrochemically mediated ATRP and photoinduced ATRP is provided, emphasizing its energy efficiency albeit a more elaborated setup. Moreover, the integration of ATRP with Reversible Addition-Fragmentation Chain-Transfer (RAFT) polymerization and ORR is introduced in emulsion. This dual radical taming approach leverages the strengths of both ATRP and Degenerative Transfer (DT), with ORR again allowing polymerization in the presence of oxygen. The combined ATRP/DT process offers mechanistic advantages compared to only ATRP or RAFT in emulsion and can operate in conditions in which both separately are not successful. A forward-looking perspective is provided on the common areas for growth in ATRP and ORR.

This website uses cookies.  More information.