This award was sent to presenters who gave good oral presentations in the annual conference of Chemical Society Japan (CSJ) in 2015.
<About awarded research>
Direct incorporation of polar monomers into polyolefin has been pursued to enable straightforward access to diversely functionalized materials. Despite recent advances in ethylene/polar monomer copolymerization using late-transition-metal catalysts, similar trials for propylene have been unsuccessful.
In this research, we developed palladium catalysts bearing imidazo[1,5-a]quinolin-9-olate-1-ylidene (IzQO) ligands, which can polymerize α-olefins while incorporating polar monomers. Known polymerization catalysts bearing N-heterocyclic-carbene (NHC) based ligands decompose rapidly, whereas the present catalyst is durable because of structural confinement, wherein the NHC-plane is coplanar to the metal square plane. Then, the steric environment provided by NHC enables regioselective insertion of α-olefins and polar monomers, yielding polypropylene, propylene/polar monomer copolymers.
It’s an honor to receive such a wonderful prize. I am grateful to Prof. Kyoko Nozaki and all the current, former group members for fruitful discussions.