Professor Bob Waymouth, December Dinner Lecture


December Dinner Lecture
Wednesday, December 16


"Designer Polyolefins: Control of Polymer Properties with New Polymerization Catalysts"Prof. Robert M. WaymouthDept. of Chemistry, Stanford University

Wednesday, December 16, 1998
Location: Capriccio Ristorante Italiano
325 Sharon Park Drive (Sharon Heights Shopping Center), Menlo Park, CA
Restaurant phone: (650)- 854-6822

Social Hour: 6:00 pm
Dinner: 7:00 pm
Talk: 8:00 pm
Dinner Choices: Chicken Picata, Calamari Siciliana, Rigatoni Amatriciana, or Capellini Con Pomodoro Fresco (Vegetarian)

Cost: $30

RESERVATIONS: Call or e-mail one or both of the following contact persons. Please indicate a dinner selection and contact information (how we can reach you).

Nayan Ashar
(408) 435-6099
and / or
Russ Beste
(510) 670-8312

RESERVATION DEADLINE: 5 pm, December 15. Note: We must ask you to be liable for the cost of your dinner if you register and do not attend; cancellations may be made up to the registration deadline.

"Designer Polyolefins: Control of Polymer Properties with New Polymerization Catalysts"

Prof. Robert M. WaymouthDept. of Chemistry, Stanford University

The plastics industry is based on technology that converts inexpensive olefin feedstocks into useful materials. Transition metal catalysts that convert olefins such as ethylene and propylene into polymer molecules are critical to this technology. Despite their widespread use, commercial catalysts are still poorly understood. New developments in the use of well-defined transition metal catalysts of known structure are revolutionizing the polyolefin industry. The physical properties of copolymers are determined both by the comonomer content and the sequence distribution of the comonomers.

We have recently initiated studies on the design of metallocene systems for the control of sequence distribution in olefin polymers and copolymers. For propylene homopolymers, control of the stereosequence distribution leads to novel propylene elastomers. By use of catalysts which fluctuate between chiral and achiral forms, a stereoblock polypropylene is formed which has interesting elastomeric properties. The resulting material is elastic rather than plastic and combines many of the useful properties of plastics (ease of processing) and of rubbers (elastic behavior).

We have recently exploited a family of rheoptical techniques to study the physical properties of these novel elastomers. These catalysts and polymers are currently in commercial development in a joint research and development effort between our laboratories and those of Amoco Chemical Company. We have also recently investigated catalysts which copolymerize ethylene and propylene to give highly alternating ethylene/propylene copolymers. Together these results show the potential of metallocenes to prepare copolymers of defined non-random sequence distribution and novel properties.

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