Vignettes on the Application of in situ Spectroscopic Methods in Polymer Science: Copolymerization Kinetics and Emergent Transport in Polymer Membranes

Friday, June 4, 2021

Dr. Bryan S. Beckingham

Department of Chemical Engineering

Auburn University

Friday, June 4th 2021 at 3:30 PM in Hand 1100

Abstract:  Polymer materials are ubiquitous in our daily lives and lie at the heart of many of today’s advanced technologies. A close inspection of our surroundings at any given time yields a wide variety of polymer materials that make life as we live it possible. Yet, there remains tremendous potential for improving our fundamental understanding of the interplay between polymer chemistry, polymer architecture and the resulting material properties and to thereby facilitate the design of new materials with tailored properties. One important polymer structural motif is copolymerization, or the polymerization of multiple monomers into the same polymer chain as through precise control over the distribution of monomers along the polymer chain, a wide variety of polymer architectures can be achieved with consequently varying and tunable physical properties. In the application of polymer materials towards energy devices the permeation of solutes through hydrated polymer membranes is of critical importance for many applications, including fuel cells and solar-driven electrochemical cells. This talk will highlight our application of in situ ATR FTIR spectroscopy towards understanding both copolymerization kinetics and the permeation of solutes through dense, hydrated membranes.

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