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Title: Green solvents for polymer applications
Author: Zhenova, Anna
ISNI:       0000 0004 8506 6497
Awarding Body: University of York
Current Institution: University of York
Date of Award: 2019
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Discovery and development of green solvents for large-scale industrial applications is critical to the bioeconomy transition, yet academic solvent research focuses on use of solvents for organic synthesis, creating a knowledge gap in other areas. Polymer dissolution comprises at least 72% of solvent use in the EU, but is largely ignored in academic literature. This thesis addresses this disparity by uncovering new polymer-related applications for existing green solvents and identifying new green solvent candidates. Dihydrolevoglucosenone, or Cyrene, is a green solvent currently manufactured at commercial scale. Its abilities in promoting organic reactions are already well-known, but it is unexplored in polymer dissolution. This work investigates the potential of Cyrene in dissolution of synthetic and natural polymers, comparing it with conventional solvent NMP as well as greener solvent alternatives. Additionally, a mixture of renewably-sourced ether oligomers (OMEs) was investigated as an alternative to conventional ether solvents. The mixture was found to work in Suzuki-Miyaura coupling, biocatalytic polymerisation, and dissolution of some polymers, but requires further safety testing before conclusions about its green status can be reached.
Supervisor: Clark, James Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available