Functional Polymers and Carbons: from fundamentals to applied materials
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Our mission is to design, create and investigate broadly defined functional polymers and carbons, particularly in a colloidal or porous form, via simple chemistry and processing. We aim to understand fundamental knowledge and confront challenges in these materials to build up a better and more sustainable society. The team deals with both basics in polymer science and carbon research, and the forefront topics in materials science and processing to inpsire new solutions to environmental and energy issues. Our current focuses are listed beneath.
1. poly(ionic liquid) chemistry for innovative materials.
Currently, one of our key focuses is the synthesis and materials application of poly(ionic liquid)s (PILs), a class of multifunctional polymers that are produced via polymerization of ionic liquids and/or attachmen of IL species covalently to the polymer chain. PILs carry a traditional profile of macromolecules and simultaneously maintain certain properties of ionic liquids, therefore representing a new concept to build up task-specific functional polyelectrolytes. Our activities on this topic cover new chemical structures. colloidal systems, porous polymers and membrane, fibers and responsive materials.
2. biopolymer-dervied functional materials
Constructing functional materials entirely or partially from renewable biopolymers is an important materials concept towards a sustainable society. From nature cotton and seasand to man-made clothes and filter papers, we invented new methods and processing concepts to make better materials. Right now we are particularly interested in biomaterial-derived soft actuators and carbon materials.
3. Polymer-derived heteroatom-doped porous carbons for energy, sensing and catalytic application
Our interest deals with polymer-derived heteroatom-doped porous carbons with well-defined shape for energy, sensing and catalytic applications. Their distinctive shapes include (nano)particles, hollow nanospheres ("nanobubbles"), forms, fibers, and membranes. These carbons are invovled as electrode or electrocatalyst in several electrochemical processes, including batteries, supercapacitors, and fuel cells.
Our review article "Advanced Heteroatom-doped Porous Carbon Membranes Assisted by Poly(ionic liquid) Design and Engineering." is accepted! Congratulations to Yucheng! Accounts of Materials Research (DOI to be announced soon.)
Our joint paper "Accelerating Crystallization of Open Organic Materials by Poly(ionic liquid)s" is accepted! Congratulations to Jianke! Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2020, DOI: 10.1002/anie.202008415..
Are you interested in working with polymeric materials? Check this new trend-article "The Next 100 Years of Polymer Science" online on July 29th 2020! Macromol. Chem. Phys. 2020, DOI: 10.1002/macp.202000216.
Our review paper "Polymer-derived Heteroatom-doped Porous Carbon Materials " is online! Congratulations to Hong, Miao, and Jianke! Chem. Rev. 2020, ! DOI: 10.1021/acs.chemrev.0c00080..
A collaboration paper "Water can Crosslink a Single Poly(ionic liquid) into Porous Supramolecular Membranes." is online. It is a new concept to produce porous ionic networks by hydrogen bonding provided by water molecules. Congratulations to Hong, Yonglei and Atefeh! Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2020, ! DOI: 10.1002/ange.202002679..
Yucheng's article "Porous carbon membrane-supported atomically dispersed pyrrole-type Fe-N4 as active sites for electrochemical hydrazine oxidation reaction." is online. It is the first report to identifiy Fe-N4 as the real catalytic site for hydrazine fule cells. Congratulations to Yucheng! Small, 2020! DOI: 10.1002/smll.202002203.
Our new review on Microstructural and Dynamical Heterogeneities in Ionic Liquids is online! Congratulations to Yonglei! Chemical Reviews, 2020! DOI: 10.1021/acs.chemrev.9b00693.
Our joint article with Prof. Liangti Qu's group at Tsinghua University on "Biomimetic anti-gravity water transport and remote harvesting powered by sunlight" is online! Global Challenges, 2020! DOI: 10.1002/gch2.202000043.
Our new review on poly(ionic liquid) composites is online! Congratulations to Jianke! Chemical Society Reviews, 2020! DOI: 10.1039/C8CS00938D.