RAFT polymerization in homogeneous aqueous media

AB Lowe
BS Sumerlin
MS Donovan
DB Thomas

Abstract

Controlled radical polymerization has been the focus of intense research during the last decade. However, to date; research has focused primarily on polymerizations conducted in homogeneous organic media or bulk with common monomers such as styrene, methyl methacrylate or butyl acrylate. The ability to conduct polymerizations in homogeneous aqueous solution is advantageous from both environmental and commercial viewpoints. In this chapter we will present a summary of our research efforts in the area of aqueous Reversible Addition-Fragmentation chain Transfer (RAFT) polymerization. We will demonstrate the broad versatility of RAFT, showing its applicability to neutral, anionic, cationic, and zwitterionic monomers from a range of monomer classes, including styrenics, acrylamides and (meth)acrylates.