While ionic liquids have been explored in great detail for a number of applications, ranging from solvents to battery electrolytes, their use as polymers or as synthetic reagents is comparatively sparse. The key to their development in these fields are the structure-activity relationships that can be observed and subsequently harnessed upon derivatization. These include their electronic structure, chemical reactivity, and affinity for surfaces, a variety of small molecules, and ions. The polymerization of these ionic species to create poly(ionic liquids), or PILs for short, combines the useful chemical properties of ILs with the improved mechanical and processability of polymers. This opens the door for new applications that would otherwise not be possible for conventional small-molecule ILs.

We harness this vast array of chemical possibility to target three disciplines. In each case, we focus on the design of new IL reagents and polymers that are tailored for performance in their respective fields, and with real-world application at the forefront of our approach. 

One function that has yet to be introduced in to ionic liquids (ILs) is the ability to alkylate other molecules, where the IL can selectively transfer one of its alkyl groups to a nucleophile under mild conditions. [more]
Recently we have exploited theophylline, a compound found in chocolate and tea, for the production of a poly(ionic liquid) (PIL) for the first time. [more]
As collaboration partners in the HELIS (High Energy Lithium Sulphur batteries) consortium and Maxnet Energy organization, we are committed to the development of next-generation energy devices. [more]
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