(404c) High Performance Degradable Polymers from Renewable Resources | AIChE

(404c) High Performance Degradable Polymers from Renewable Resources


Hillmyer, M. A., University of Minnesota
Synthetic polymers can be used in the manufacture of commercial products as deceptively simple as plastic bottles or as specialized as medical implants and composites for aircraft. Although these versatile materials are essential to our society, their manufacture and disposal can be damaging to the environment. In this talk I will discuss my efforts to develop high performance sustainable polymers for a wide variety of applications. First, I will briefly describe the invention of an efficient and scalable semisynthetic method for the production of a renewable and biodegradable aliphatic polyester, poly(β-methyl-δ- valerolactone) (PMVL). Next, I will explore the use of PMVL as precursor for the preparation of tough plastics, elastomers, pressure sensitive adhesives, and chemically recylcable polyurethane foams. Finally, I will discuss how changes to aliphatic polyester structure relate to several key physical parameters that influence material performance and explain how this knowledge of polymer structure-property relationships can be used to design advanced sustainable polymers tailor-made for specific applications.