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Polymerisation in Flow and Solid State.

BROCKEN, LAURENS (2016) Polymerisation in Flow and Solid State. Doctoral thesis, Durham University.

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The aim of this thesis was to develop and facilitate new approaches to polymer synthesis. The chosen tools for this task were flow chemistry and topochemical polymerisation. Flow chemistry has proven its strength in the past and is a technique suitable for performing synthesis at scale.

Three areas were explored in this thesis. In the first results chapter the free radical polymerisation of aqueous solution of acrylic acid (7) has been studied using a continuous flow reactor to quickly screen reaction parameters such as temperature, residence time, monomer- and initiator concentration. The experimental data sets produced established a theoretical basis for conducting scale up processes to efficiently produce larger quantities of poly(acrylic acid) (8) delivered with good control over the molecular weight and dispersity. The data sets were used to study the ability to synthesise polymers on demand.

The developed methodology to synthesise aqueous soluble polymers in flow, possessing a variety of molecular weights and dispersities have been achieved. However, full conversion was hard to achieve without increasing the dispersity and purification was therefore necessary. The second results chapter studied the direct purification to obtain purified polymer under one hour. This opened up a new way to synthesise and isolate polymers.

Performing a free radical polymerisation in flow does not result in the control over tacticity of the polymerisation. The third results chapter studied the synthesis of polymers via topochemical polymerisation and the advantages it can add to general polymer synthesis.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Philosophy
Keywords:free radical polymerisation, flow chemistry, flow polymerisation, poly(acrylic acid), polymer purification, ultrafiltration, topochemical polymerisation
Faculty and Department:Faculty of Science > Chemistry, Department of
Thesis Date:2016
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:20 Dec 2016 09:43

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