Catalysis - Enabling Chemistry
During catalysis, minute quantities of a "molecular matchmaker" are enough to trigger a chemical reaction and even to point it in the desired direction. This way, chemistry becomes more sustainable, helping to make use of new raw materials and to shape processes more efficiently, which in turn may reduce energy consumption and emissions of CO2.
Catalysts for CO2-based Polymers
The vision of realizing a new industrial process utilizing CO2 as polymer buidling block was formulated by Thomas E. Müller in early 2008. The general context was discussed in a lecture on occasion of the ACS spring meeting in New Orleans. Since then the topic has received immense attention in the scientific community as well as industry. The choice of the right catalyst in combination with appropriate reaction engineering has since then been the key to develop a new process for the production of CO2-based polyols and the design of tailor-made polymeric materials.