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Biodegradable Photopolymers: From Chemical Depolymerization to Soil Compostability Webinar

February 23 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm EST

Biodegradable photopolymers: from chemical depolymerization to soil compostability
Friday, February 23, 2024 from 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM EST
Speaker: Chen Wang, University of Utah
Webinar Overview:
Photopolymer materials are used in many commodity applications, including adhesives, over-print varnishes, packaging materials, and disposable medical devices such as contact lenses. The vast majority of photopolymer materials directly contribute to landfill waste as they are not recyclable or capable of biodegradation. Several reports have shown that chemical depolymerization of photopolymers can be achieved by incorporating labile bonds in multifunctional (meth)acrylate monomers. However, demonstration of biodegradation such as soil compostability has been scarce. In this webinar, I will discuss the progress of polymer chemistry towards biodegradable photopolymers. I will also discuss a recent work from our group at the University of Utah, where we investigated the soil compostability of thiol-ene based photopolymers. We found that thiol-ene photopolymers containing oligo-caprolactone groups were susceptible to 55-83% biodegradation through biochemical oxygen demand testing with activated sludge. We were able to completely disintegrate these polymers in compost at 58 ºC and 76 ± 1 % humidity through soil disintegration testing.

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February 23
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm EST
Event Category: