The common theme for most of our projects is the use of novel controlled radical polymerization methods  such as nitroxide mediated polymerization (NMP), reversible addition fragmentation transfer polymerization (RAFT) and atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) to synthesize polymers with controlled microstructure (eg. block copolymers, stars, gradient copolymers, graft copolymers). Such controlled radical polymerization methods are performed under similar conditions as conventional radical polymerization but produce polymers with much narrower molecular weight distributions which allows for precise control of the segment lengths. Previously, such control could only be attained using ionic polymerization methods which require extensive purification of reagents and protection of functional groups. Further, controlled radical polymerization allows combinations of monomer sequences which may not be necessarily possible with ionic polymerization. Our research projects are thus focused on block copolymer synthesis (mostly by NMP) for applications ranging from stimuli-responsive materials, next-generation coating materials and barrier materials.

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