CHEM 773/7730-01 - Polymer Properties and Polymerization

Semester: Winter 2021

Professor: J. Duhamel | Discipline: Polymer |


  1. Refresher on basic concepts: Homopolymers vs. copolymers, molecular weight distributions and averages, polydispersity, free radical addition polymerization.
  2. Emulsion polymerization: Initiators, surfactants and other components. Polymerization rate and molecular weight control.
  3. Copolymerization equation, monomer reactivity ratios. Types of behaviors: random, alternating, blocky copolymers. Integrated copolymerization equation. Copolymer microstructure. Multicomponent polymerization. Structural effects, Q-e scheme, kinetics.
  4. Anionic polymerization: initiation, propagation, termination. “Living” polymerizations. Solvent and temperature effects, reactivity modifiers, stereochemistry control. Cationic polymerization: initiation, propagation, chain transfer, temperature effects.
  5. Coordination polymerization: Ziegler-Natta catalysts, supported catalysts, stereochemistry control.
  6. Polymer mixtures. Solution thermodynamics, solubility parameter and variations, Flory-Huggins theory. Applications of solution thermodynamics: plasticization, fractionation, polymer mixtures (blends).
  7. Polymer self-associations: Close/open association mechanism, supramolecular polymerization.


Principles of Polymerization (3rd Edition) by G. Odian (Wiley: NY, 1991; QD281.P603 1991), Polymers: Chemistry and Physics of Modern Materials (2nd Edition) by J. M. G. Cowie (Blackie Academic: Glasgow, 1991; QD381.C68x 1991), Elements of Polymer Science and Engineering by A. Rudin (Academic Press: San Diego, 1999; QD381.R8 1999).


One in class mid-term exam (30% or 0%) on Tuesday February 23rd, 2021 at 8:30 am, a 21/2-hour final exam (50% or 80%), and a 20-30 page report (20%) describing how three main topics described in the course could apply to your research.




  • Tue: 8:30 am - 9:50 am in Remote
  • Thu: 8:30 am - 9:50 am in Remote

Office Hours

Room: C2-163; Tel: 35916; E-mail: [email protected], Office hours: Tuesdays 10:30 – 12:00