Professor Zhang Daohong and Associate Professor Jiang Yu, leading their team from Chemical Materials School of SCMZU, have made new research progress in the precise regulation of hyperbranched polymer microstructure. Their research findings were published in German Applied Chemistry entitled “One-Pot Structure-Controlled Synthesis of Hyperbranched Polymers by a ‘Latent’ Inimer Strategy Based on Diels-Alder Chemistry”, with Yang Neng, a postgraduate in Chemical Materials School and Associate Prof. Jiang Yu being the first authors, and Prof. Zhang Daohong and Assoicate Prof. Jiang Ju the corresponding authors.
Hyperbranched polymer, as a kind of polymer with highly branched topology, has vast application prospect in the fields of drug carriers, nanomaterials and molecular sensing because of its excellent solubility, low viscosity and large number of end radicel. The microstructure of hyperbranched polymers has a significant impact on their performance and properties, so the precise regulation of microstructure has always been a great challenge in the field of hyperbranched polymers.
Prof. Zhang and Associate Prof. Jiang’s team have successively realized radicel regulation, chemical composition and skeleton structure regulation of hyperbranched polymers. In order to overcome the difficulty to accurately regulate the topological structure, the team studied and developed a new method based on Diels-Alder (D-A) dynamic chemistry. With the help of the controllability of D-A dynamic covalent bond, this method can accurately control the topological structure of hyperbranched polymerization products from two aspects of reaction temperature and stereochemical structure of raw materials.
In addition, the research team used programmable temperature strategy to construct polymers with complex topologies, based on which it is expected to expand the application of different types of dynamic chemical bonds with milder reaction to regulate the topological structure of hyperbranched polymers.
The hyperbranched polymer team led by Prof. Zhang was selected as a member of Hubei Provincial Natural Science Innovation Group, National Ethnic Affairs Commission Innovation Team and Hubei Provincial Entrepreneurship and Innovation Strategy Team. The team members have presided over 10 National Natural Science Foundation projects, 30 provincial key projects and enterprise entrusted projects in the field of hyperbranched polymers, and have been granted more than 70 international and national invention patents. The team has cooperated with enterprises to build the largest thousand-ton annual hyperbranched polymer production demonstration line in China, providing hyperbranched polymer research products for more than 200 universities and research institutes, and high-performance energy-saving processing additives and key technologies for engineering plastic processing enterprises at home and abroad. In recent years, the team has achieved a lot in the fields of hyperbranched polymer synthesis and structure regulation, and the recycling of hyperbranched epoxy resin and its composite materials, which has promoted the rapid and healthy development of related fields.
Edited by Liu Hong
Reviewed by Pan Wenjun