News

Start guest professorship Maarten at University of Ghent

This month Maarten joined the Department of Organic and Macromolecular Chemistry at Ghent University as a guest professor. For the next three years, he will spend part of this time in Ghent, to continue the collaborative work he started lasted year during his sabbatical stay in the Polymer Chemistry Research Group of Prof. Filip Du Prez.

Lucas’ recent paper in Adv. Mater. Interfaces accepted

Lucas’ most recent paper has been published in Advanced Materials Interfaces. This work, which Lucas performed partially together with undergraduate student Jelle, presents a facile and effective two-step (grafting-to) strategy to introduce a thermoresponsive polymer as a responsive coating on a surface. To this end, Lucas reacted block copolymers of poly(glycidyl methacrylate) and poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) onto a prefunctionalised poly(dopamine) primer layer. Not only did Lucas study in detail the thermoresponsive properties and degree of hydration of the (block) copolymers as a function of temperature, but he also studied their antifouling performance.

Click here, to read the full paper.

Maarten will give Diligentia lecture

On November 7, Maarten will give a Diligentia lecture for the Koninklijke Maatschappij voor Natuurkunde (Royal Society of Physics) at theater Diligentia in The Hague. This lecture, which is aimed at the general audience (with an interest in physical sciences in a broad sense) will address the development of covalent adaptable networks (‘vitrimers’) as novel type of polymers that can combine mechanical robustness with processability.

For more information, please check out the Koninklijke Maatschappij voor Natuurkunde Diligentia website.

Annemieke will present her work at NWO Chains 2022

Our group is well represented at the upcoming NWO Chains conference, with several contributions to the poster sessions. On top of that, Annemieke will present her work on self-healing (non)-fluorinated antifouling polymer brushes during a lecture on Wednesday September 21. Please find your way to the Functional Polymer Materials session from 14:10-15:10h in Room 65 to hear Annemieke’s results on how to prepare polymer (brush coatings), that are simultaneously anti-(polymer) fouling, self-healing and environmentally benign (i.e., low fluorine content).

Thijmen started as new PhD student

This month Thijmen van Voorthuizen started as PhD student, working on a project that is part of the NWA-ORC (“Research along routes by Consortia”) consortium OBSeRVeD (Odour Based Selective Recognition of Veterinary Diseases), which was successfully obtained with Dr. Louis de Smet from ORC/WUR. Thijmen will work on the development of covalent organic frameworks (COFs) to be used as sensor of odour molecules. Good luck, Thijmen!

Simon’s paper accepted in Comp. Phys. Commun.

Simon’s joint work with Ellen was accepted for publication in Computer Physics Communications. Their paper describes a user-friendly graphical user interface software that can be directly used by materials scientists for Ideal Adsorption Solution Theory (IAST) calculations. Such calculations are highly useful when trying to understand and predict the gas separation performance of (nano)porous materials, as used -for example- for CO2 capture.

You can read the full paper here.

Collaborative paper with Du Prez group accepted in Eur. Pol. J.

The research that Maarten Smulders undertook during his sabbatical leave in the fall of 2021 in the group of Filip Du Prez has been published in the European Polymer Journal. The work, jointly performed with PhD students Filip van Lijsebetten and Stephanie Engelen, describes how epoxy-based coatings can be made recyclable without affecting their barrier properties. To this end, within the epoxy network dynamic-covalent vinylogous urethane groups were introduced to create a vitrimer epoxy coating. Extensive characterisation of the coating, in part performed at the facilities of Flamac, revealed that the coatings maintained their corrosion protection even after exposure to salt water and steam condensation. In addition, upon damaging, the barrier properties could be restored by simple heating. Finally, it was demonstrated the coatings could reversibly adhered to an aluminium surface.

You can read the full paper here.

NWO Circularity Grant awarded

Maarten was awarded an NWO Circularity Grant for a project entitled “Dynamic Branching for Circularity (DYNABRANCH)”. A consortium of WUR, TUE, AVANS Breda and SABIC, lead by Maarten, will take on two PhD students and a postdoc to: 1) achieve chemically modification of engineering plastics with dynamic covalent chemistry to improve their recyclability, and 2) to study the societal acceptance of these new polymers.

More information can be read on the website of NWO.