News

Congrats to Sybren for his paper in Chemical Science

Sybren’s first paper was published in the journal Chemical Science. In his paper, entitled Molecular Control over Vitrimer-like Mechanics – Tuneable Dynamic Motifs based on the Hammett Equation, Sybren demonstrated how the physical-organic Hammett equation can be used to control the material properties of imine-based covalent adaptable networks. His results guide the way to durable and sustainable materials with unique and predictable properties from a bottom-up physical-organic approach.

Sybren’s project is part of the Vidi program of Maarten on 4D control over smart dynamic polymers, financed by NWO.

The full paper can be read here.

Focus session Dynamic Polymers for Advanced Materials at NWO Chains 2020

Together with Matt Baker (MERLN Institute for Technology-Inspired Regenerative Medicine, Maastricht University) Maarten is co-organising a focus session during the next NWO Chains conference. Their focus session is entitled Dynamic Polymers for Advanced Materials, is scheduled for Wednesday December 9, from 14.15-15.35h, and will host a combination of international and national speakers.

While traditional polymeric materials are built from static covalent bonds, the incorporation of dynamic, responsive and reversible bonds into polymeric materials provides enhanced properties for many fields. In particular, very recently the use of dynamic covalent bonds, which combine robustness (due to the covalent nature of the bond) with reversibility, has opened up the routes towards new functional polymers, even beyond the scope attainable through –by now– classical supramolecular bonds. These materials range from recyclable and self-healing materials, to dynamic and stimuli-responsive smart systems, smartly designed dynamic polymers are beginning to impact our lives in applications from manufacturing to biomedical implants. This session will focus on recent developments in the use of dynamic covalent motifs as the reversible units within materials.

Make sure to register for Chains, if you want to attend this focus session.

Collaborative paper with Dankers lab out in Macromolecules

The results of a collaborative project with the group of Patricia Dankers has been published in Macromolecules. In the project the functionalization of a supramolecular biomaterial with zwitterionic poly(sulfobetaine methacrylate) via atom transfer radical polymerization from a macroinitiator additive was achieved. In addition, the polymerization from the macroinitiator additive was successfully translated to functional electrospun scaffolds, showing the potential for this functionalization strategy in supramolecular material systems. The full paper can be read here.

Paper Esther and Andriy out in Langmuir

Esther and Andriy’s joint paper on the design, synthesis and characterisation of so-called bottlebrush coatings, based on a powerful combination of poly(N-(2-hydroxypropyl)methacrylamide) [poly(HPMA)] – known for its antifouling properties – and poly(L-lysine) (PLL) – selected for its ability to strongly adhere to surfaces – has been accepted for publication in Langmuir. Three routes to prepare antifouling coatings were developed by Esther and Andriy, and evaluated in terms of ease of synthesis, scalability, ease of characterization, and a preliminary investigation of their antifouling performance. The full paper can be read here.

Team NanopLESStic wins Holland Chemistry Student Competition

During the annual Dutch Chemistry Conference, Chains, students from our lab (and the BCT lab) at WUR were announced winner of the 2019 Holland Chemistry Student competition, for their work on a nanoplastics filter. On the NWO website you can read more about the project, and you can watch a video from the team.

Congrats to Team NanopLESStic: Dorien, Laura and Ezra. (And thanks to KWR, Royal HaskoningDHV, and Wetsus for their support).

 

Postdoc vacancy

Our group is looking for a postdoc to work on a 1-year project aimed at the development of sound-adsorbing polymer foam-based metamaterials. This project, which was started in 2018 as part of the Top Sector Chemistry Student Competition and which was ultimately the winning project, is now aiming at a more systematic study how foam-like polymer materials containing beads can be prepared, characterised and applied as sound-adsorbing materials. Based on the principle of local resonances and viscous dampening, such ‘metafoams’ are capable of dampening both high and low frequency sound. As a result, metafoams can help to tackle the issue of noise pollution, which has increased in severity over the years as a result of population growth, advances in technology and urbanisation.

More details on the vacancy and on how to apply can be found on our university’s website.

Welcome to Simon

Last month Simon van Hurne started as a PhD student in our lab. He will work together with fellow PhD student Sybren and Maarten on the Vidi project, entitled 4D Control over Smart Dynamic Polymers. In his PhD project Simon will develop new molecules and corresponding materials that will create smart, responsive polymers.

Paper in Advanced Science online

The results of our collaboration with Artur Stefankiewicz (Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznań) have been published online in Advanced Science.

In this work, we looked at the self-assembly of a naphthalene diimide monomer, designed to be soluble in a range of solvents. Depending on solvent and temperature, one of three different assembly states could be accessed.

More details can be read on the website of Advanced Science.

NanopLESStic Team in Holland Chemistry Student Competition 2019 final

A team of three honour students Molecular Life Sciences at Wageningen University made it to the final of the sixth edition of the Holland Chemistry Student Competition, which is organized by NWO together with Holland Chemistry. Ezra Bekkering, Dorien Westert and Laura Akkerman obtained a grant for their idea to prepare a filter that adsorbs nanoplastic from aqueous streams. The internship work will be performed in the labs of Biobased Chemistry & Technology (Dr Elinor Scott) and Organic Chemistry (Dr Smulders and Dr de Smet). KWR, Royal HaskoningDHV and Wetsus have indicated to support this project and are interested in the results. ORC wishes the NanopLESStic team a lot of success with their project and looks forward to the presentation of the results at CHAINS 2019.

More info can be found on the website of NWO (Dutch / English).