Research

 

Synthesis and doping processes in polyheterocycles

Synthesis and doping processes in polyheterocycles

Electroactive Polymers:

  • Switch reversibly between multiple oxidation states
  • Also known as conducting polymers or inherently conducting polymers
  • Variable property control: color/size/permeability/conductivity/reactivity
  • Applications: energy storage, LEDs, electrochromics, sensors, static discharge, etc.
  • Can be p-doped (positive charges formed along the polymer chain) or n-doped (negative charges formed along the polymer chain)
    Comparing fluorescence of several monomers

    Comparing fluorescence of several monomers

    SEM of templated P3HT

    Soft templated
    poly(3-hexylthiophene)

Research Interests:

  • Synthesis of stable n-doping polymers
  • Functionalizing electroactive polymers with biomolecules for use as biosensors (with T. Betancourt)
  • Templating to improve electroactivity
  • Ion mobility in electroactive polymers
  • Nanoparticle coating and reactivity
  • Improving electrochemical capacitor stability and capacity
  • Ionic liquids as dopants in electroactive polymers
  • Design of electroactive polymers for photothermal ablation of tumors (with T. Betancourt)
  • Preparation of high molecular weight, soluble electroactive polymers

Recent BS Chemistry grad David Hebert (left) teaches visiting REU student Tim Carrum (right) about coupling reactions.

Student Learning Opportunities:

  • Synthesis of novel organic molecules, such as functionalized heterocycles
  • Polymer synthesis
  • Purification and characterization of organic small molecules and polymers
  • Morphology studies
  • Electrochemical characterization
  • Device fabrication and testing
  • Nanoparticle coating and characterization

Master’s student Marisa Snapp-Leo electropolymerizes a new monomer.