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Producing New Recyclable Materials by Combining Monomer Design with Physical Organic Chemistry.

Author(s): Eddie Martin, Molly Jane, Kate Jenson, Sarah Dias

For this goal, a variety of monomer families have been investigated, from phthalaldehydes to dithiolenes, with a focus on Ring-Opening Polymerization (ROP) of low strain cyclic monomers. Chen and coworkers' study, which was especially outstanding, demonstrated totally recyclable systems for -butyrolactone and its annulated derivatives that have characteristics similar to those of common thermoplastics. The Lu group built on the success of lactones by creating hydroxyproline-derived thiolactone monomers that were capable of quick and reversible ROP to produce Polythioesters (PTEs). Thioesters have substantially higher rates of transesterification than their oxoester counterparts, which makes it easier to produce and disassemble low ceiling temperature polymers quickly.

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