Lecture series in the Doc-School

635.003 Advanced Applied Chemistry

Dr. Armin Pfeil

Molecules - Products - Patents: From Chemistry to Applications

Chemical Anchoring is a specialty application in civil engineering and construction, which relies on high-performing materials obtained by polymerization of monomers and oligomers. The “soul” of the system is the thermosetting resin which has to fulfill many critical requirements, since the material will be produced under varying, sometimes non favorable conditions (very low or high temperatures, dust, humidity…), on the job site. Thus, reliable and robust curing mechanisms are required, demanding sound scientific work from the R&D chemist in charge of developing chemical anchoring systems. Two chemistries are established which can fulfill these requirements: Fast curing unsaturated resins (like vinyl esters, methacrylates – radical polymerization) and slow-curing epoxy-amine systems (polyaddition), both offering particular benefits.
We will explore the state-of-the art chemistry of currently used radically curing systems (monomers, radical initiators and scavengers, structure-property-relationships…) and understand the relation between basic molecular properties and the final products’ properties – we will see that basic textbook chemistry is clearly linked to product behavior and performance. Then we will go for a virtual development of a novel curing system by considering the latest state of the art in adjacent application fields and academic literature – we will learn that by sound understanding of basic chemical principles, the industrial R&D chemist is able to go for a rational design of a novel polymerization system for a new product. At the end we imagine that we will strive for intellectual properties for our invention – we will learn what patents are, why they are beneficial, and how we can protect our invention by a strong patent.