Dr. Buck Taylor
College of Arts & Sciences
Polymerization reactions, which create a repeating chain of subunits, are crucial in the development and understanding of many essential materials and biological molecules. This research focuses on the mechanism of a polymerization reaction of monomers containing a cycloalkene and alkyne, which rearrange into a diene subunit under the influence of a ruthenium-based catalyst. This research examines why some monomers successfully polymerize while other similar monomers fail. Computational chemistry techniques (density functional theory) are used to study the mechanism and reactivity of each monomer. Our results show that the productive polymerization reaction competes with a side-reaction in which the catalyst reacts only with the alkyne, shutting down polymerization. A general model has been developed from the results to predict the reactivity of monomers based on the molecular geometry.
Computational chemistry; Ruthenium catalysts; Polymerization; Polymers; Biopolymers
Citation: Pilot Scholars Version (Modified MLA Style)
Elkhal, Christopher, "Ruthenium-Catalyzed Ring-Opening/Ring-Closing Metathesis Polymerization" (2019). Honors Projects. 38.