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 well-structured (e.g., 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 inspire new solutions to environmental and energy issues. Our current focuses are listed beneath.
1. poly(ionic liquid) chemistry for materials innovation.
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. biomass-derived functional systems
Constructing functional systems and devices entirely or partially from renewable biomass is an important materials concept towards a sustainable society. From nature trees and cottons to clothes and filter papers, we invented new design methods and processing concepts to make better materials from renewable resources. Right now we are particularly interested in biomaterial-derived soft actuators and energy storage/conversion system.
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, electrolyzers, and fuel cells.
Our ERC-Consolidator project (2022-2027) "Nanoporous Porous poly(ionic liquid)s for CO2 capture and simultaneous conversion under ambient conditions (PARIS)" will start in Winter 2022. We will desgin dual-functional porous polymer spheres for CO2 capture and utilization under ambient conditions!
Our new article on " Poly(ionic liquid) Nanovesicle-Templated Carbon Nanocapsules Functionalized with Uniform Iron Nitride Nanoparticles as Catalytic Sulfur Host for Li?S Batteries" has been accepted! It is a joint publication with our collaborator with Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin. We effectively improve the performance of the Li-S batteries by surpressing the shuttling of polysylfides. ACS. Nano. 2022, jsut accepted. DOI: 10.1021/acsnano.2c01992.
Our new article on " One-pot Construction of Nitrogen-rich Polymeric Ionic Porous Networks for Effective CO2 capture and fixation. " has been accepted! It is a joint publication with our collaborator Prof. GUipeng Yu. We effectively catalyzed the cycloaddition reaction of CO2 and epoxides under mild conditions. Polym. Chem. 2022, 13, 121-129. DOI: 10.1039/d1py01121a.
Our new article on " Janus-interface engineering boosting solar steam towards high efficiency water collection. " is online! It is a joint publication from STINT-funded project on clean water production from solar energy! Energy Environ. Sci. 2021, DOI: 10.1039/D1EE01381E.
Our new article on ""Mix-Then-on-Demand-Complex": In-Situ Cascade Anionization and Complexation of Graphene Oxide for High-Performance Nanofiltration Membranes." is online! Congrats to Xiaoting and Miao! ACA Nano, 2021, DOI: 10.1021/acsnano.0c08308.
Our joint article with Prof. Liangti Qu's group at Tsinghua University on "From Wood to Thin Porous Carbon Membrane: Ancient Materials for Modern Ultrafast Electrochemical Capacitors in Alternating Current Line Filtering" is online! Congrats to Miao! Energy Storage Materials, 2021, 15, 3, 4440–4449 DOI: 10.1016/j.ensm.2020.11.007.
Highlgiht: we are all healthy! image: last group ZOOM seminar in 2020 on Dec. 18.
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 , 2020, DOI: 10.1021/accountsmr.0c00010..
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..
Our new review on poly(ionic liquid) composites is online! Congratulations to Jianke! Chemical Society Reviews, 2020! DOI: 10.1039/C8CS00938D.