chapter  3
Microwave Heating asa Tool for Sustainable Polymer Chemistry
Pages 20

Polymer chemistry covers the broad eld of the preparation, characterization, and manipulation of substances having molecular weights ranging from thousands to millions.1 Polymers or macromolecules have properties that are quite different from those of low-molecular-weight compounds. Descriptors such as degree of polymerization, molar mass distribution, tacticity, degree of branching, and crystallinity, together with thermal properties such as glass transition temperature and melting temperature, are used to fully characterize them. Structural polymers are dened by their mechanical strength together with their thermal and chemical properties and are mainly used as construction materials. Functional polymers can have special electrical, optical, or biological properties and nd their main application in bio-related domains or for the manufacture of microelectronic devices. Polymers can be obtained from natural sources, many naturally occurring substances being macromolecules, for example, starch, cellulose, proteins, nucleic acids, and natural rubber. They can also be

3.1 Introduction ..................................................................................................... 53 3.2 Use of Alternative Solvents ............................................................................. 55

3.2.1 Microwave-Assisted Polymer Synthesis in Water .............................. 55 3.2.2 Microwave-Assisted Polymer Synthesis in Ionic Liquids .................. 57 3.2.3 Microwave-Assisted Polymer Synthesis Using Supercritical CO2 .....60 3.2.4 Microwave-Assisted Polymer Synthesis Using Solvent-Free

Conditions ...........................................................................................60 3.3 Use of Alternative Feedstocks ......................................................................... 62 3.4 Design of Degradable Polymeric Materials ....................................................64 3.5 Recycling Polymers ........................................................................................66 3.6 Conclusions .....................................................................................................68 Acknowledgments ....................................................................................................68 References ................................................................................................................69