Polymer Chemistry and Physical Chemistry (part 1 : Polymer Chemistry)

lchm2261a  2020-2021  Louvain-la-Neuve

Polymer Chemistry and Physical Chemistry (part 1 : Polymer Chemistry)
Due to the COVID-19 crisis, the information below is subject to change, in particular that concerning the teaching mode (presential, distance or in a comodal or hybrid format).
3 credits
22.5 h + 7.5 h
Fustin Charles-André; Gohy Jean-François;
Main themes
This course provides an introduction to advanced methods of polymerisation. The course is made of projects. All topics are not necessarily covered each year. After recalling the basics of chain polymerization methods, the different current synthetic strategies will be studied (anionic, cationic, standard radical, controlled radical and coordinative polymerization methods). The scope and limitations of each method will be systematically discussed. Mechanistic and kinetic features will be then studied for each polymerization method. Special emphasis will be finally placed on the control of macromolecular architectures.

At the end of this learning unit, the student is able to :

1 The course aims at providing a deep knowledge of chain growth polymerisation methods. At the end of the course, the students will master the state-of-the-art in chain growth polymerisation methods, the links between controlled and living polymerisation methods and the molecular characteristics of the resulting chains (molar mass, chain dispersity, architecture), and the technological gridlocks facing chain growth polymerisation. Additionally, the students will be able to use the above-mentioned concepts in order to propose relevant synthetic methods for specific cases.
The contribution of this Teaching Unit to the development and command of the skills and learning outcomes of the programme(s) can be accessed at the end of this sheet, in the section entitled 'Programmes/courses offering this Teaching Unit'.
  1. Introduction: Living and controlled chain polymerizations
  2. Atom-transfer radical polymerizations (ATRP)
  3. Nitroxide-madiated radical polymerizations (NMP)
  4. Reversible addition-fragmentation chain-transfer polymerization (RAFT)
  5. Anionic polymerizations
  6. Living ring-opening polymerizations (LROP)
  7. Organocatalytic ring-opening polymerizations
  8. Control of macromolecular architectures
  9. Mechanistic transformations
  10. Supramolecular polymerizations
Teaching methods

Due to the COVID-19 crisis, the information in this section is particularly likely to change.

Part A "Chain polymerization methods"
The chemistry part is based on a self-learning system. Scientific reviews, dealing with the main polymerization methods, will be provided and will be analyzed in small groups. Each student will work on three projects (polymerization methods). The self-learning will be conducted for two to three weeks during which the students and teachers will meet to discuss the reviews and prepare a presentation summarizing the reviews (see schedule). The students will then present orally their project before the whole class, followed by questions. This self-learning process will be evaluated by the teachers.
Part B "Physical chemistry of polymers in solution"
The physical chemistry part is made of a small number of classes in flipped classroom co-modal format, in which the students resolve small problems and discuss concepts with the teacher, based on a prior reading of a section of the lecture notes and/or on watching podcasts. Before each class, the students have to answer a few questions on their preparative reading (quizzes); their answers are used by the teacher to identify misconceptions and tune the content of the classes. A small interrogation at the end of each class contributes to the continuous evaluation of the students. In case of sanitary issues, case studies could be proposed, consisting of a problem inspired by real cases and requiring to analyze virtual data, using among others the characterization techniques described in the lecture notes. In such a case, the case studies would replace part of the classes.
Evaluation methods

Due to the COVID-19 crisis, the information in this section is particularly likely to change.

50% of the final mark is attributed to the work performed during the year (continuous evaluation) and 50% for the written exam. The written exam consists of solving cases similar to those studied during the course.
Other information
Written notes and reference books will be made available for the students. The course could be partly or totally delivered by an invited lecturer.
Online resources
The scientific papers that are the base for the course are available on Moodle
L'ouvrage de référence suivant couvre une partie des concepts du partim B / the following textbook deals with part of the concepts of part B:
Paul C. Hiemenz & Timothy P. Lodge, Polymer Chemistry, 2nd edition, CRC Press:Boca Raton, 2007.
Faculty or entity
Force majeure
Teaching methods
Partim B: the teaching methodology is not dependent of sanitary conditions, contrarily to what was initially written.
Evaluation methods
Partim B: the evaluation of the students will be the one initially planned, irrespective of the sanitary conditions, contrarily to what was initially written.

Programmes / formations proposant cette unité d'enseignement (UE)

Title of the programme
Master [120] in Chemistry

Master [120] in Chemistry and Bioindustries