Open Symposia

Triggers and Switches for Polymerization and Depolymerization

Nominally co-sponsored with POLY.

Nature’s ability of regulating the synthesis and degradation of macromolecules in response to changes in the environment has inspired many recent advancements in the field of polymer chemistry. This symposium will focus on the recent developments of strategies to allow spatiotemporal control of polymerization and depolymerization in response to internal and external triggers.

Jia Niu, Boston College
Jeff Byers, Boston College

PMSE/POLY Poster Session

Organizers Lisa S. Baugh, ExxonMobil Research & Engineering

Clay/Polymers Composites: Nanoclays and Other Natural Nanoproducts

Clay-polymer composites are an important research field. Loading polymers with clay particles essentially increases the composite strength and provides functionality (self-healing, flame retardancy, anticorrosion and antibacterial properties). However, only recently were such composites prepared with the control of nanoscale organization. This progress was related to different nanoassembly methods, such as a layer-by-layer assembly, silane mono and multilayers, and others. A design of organized clay – polymeric nanocomposites demands well defined clay nanoparticles. For this, new methods of clay purification, surfaces modification and composite processing were developed. Clay nanoparticles were prepared as sheets of ca 1 nm thickness and a few hundred nanometers wide (such as kaolin, montmorillonite, laponite and bentonite). Recently, a development was reached for elongated clay particles formed through multilayer rolling of alumosilicate sheets. They are tubule halloysite and imogolite having diameters from 2 to 100 nm and length around 1 mkm, fibrous sepiolite, and others. Clay nanotubes may be loaded with agents for anticorrosion, oxidation or antifouling protection, and other chemically active compounds allowing for functional composites. Our symposium will focus on nanoscale organization of clay / polymer composites based on different clay nanoparticles taking into account their shapes and sizes. Nanoarchitectural approach in design of smart natural composites through “green” chemistry approach will be “motto” of our symposium. Clay-polymer materials are important nano- micro composites with possibility for industrial scaling up. Other natural nanoparticle composites will be included in our program; they are cellulose nanocrystals, graphene and silica.
Global nanoclay reinforcement market was estimated at over $ 900 million. Rising demand of these materials on account of their excellent characteristics including toughness, stiffness, dimensional stability, thermal resistance, chemical resistance, enhanced barrier properties and flexibility at high temperatures is expected. We plan 5 sections and a round table discussion to mix different expertise.

Synthesis, Characterization and Application of Polymer Brushes

After almost 30 years since the definition of polymer “brush” assemblies, this crossdisciplinary area of research is now mature for its translation into technology. Thanks to the increasing efforts by polymer chemists, materials scientists and theoreticians, polymer brush-based coatings are nowadays applied to precisely adjust the interfacial physicochemical properties of materials across the lenghtscales, in a variety of formulations, ranging from tissue engineering supports to composites.

Edmondo M. Benetti, ETH Zürich
Prof. Harm-Anton Klok, EPFL Lausanne
Krzysztof Matyjaszewski, Department of Chemistry, Carnegie Mellon University