GCSP research stipend | Fall 2022

Investigation of Chemically Recyclable Thiol-ene Crosslinked Photopolymers

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Traditional hydrocarbon-based plastics are unable to be chemically recycled. The purpose of this research is to develop similar materials that do not pose the same environmental hazard as conventional plastics. Photo-induced crosslinked materials may be produced via the reaction of multifunctional enes with thiol-terminal oligomers containing a dynamic disulfide backbone (thioplast). These networks may then be degraded via thiol-disulfide exchange using triethylamine catalyst and excess thioplast, resulting in complete degradation back into oligomers. The introduction of an additional terminal thiol end monomer (2,2′-(Ethylenedioxy)diethanethiol) (EDDET) enhances the network’s material properties and degradation characteristics.

Student researcher

Connor Williamson

Connor E. Williamson

Chemical engineering

Hometown: Scottsdale, Arizona, United States

Graduation date: Spring 2024