(46d) A New Synthetic Approach to Epoxide Polymerization
AIChE Annual Meeting
Sunday, November 13, 2016 - 4:30pm to 4:45pm
Polyethers are important in established and developmental technologies, fulfilling such diverse roles as biocompatible materials in drug delivery schemes, stabilizing polymers in nancomposites, and as solvent and heat resistant components in automotive applications. Historically, polyethers have been synthesized via an array of methods such as coordination-insertion or anionic ring opening polymerization. However, contemporary techniques have difficulty achieving precise control over one or many properties such as molecular weight, molecular weight distribution, or stereochemistry. Here we present a new, facile scheme to produce polyethers using a pseudo-ionic method that allows us to precisely tune a number of physical, chemical, and structural properties. We find that a chemically disparate set of monomers are compatible with our process making it remarkably generalizable. Furthermore, we show that average molecular weight can be easily tuned across a wide range while maintaining control over moleceular weight distribution. Finally, we demonstrate control over both the end groups and the stereo chemistry of the synthesized polyethers. Therefore, we have demonstrated a new polymerization platform for polyethers which provides a significant degree of control over the physical, chemical, and structural properties of the polymer.