Campus Box 3290 Chapel Hill, NC 27599-3290, USA

Research Polymer/Materials

Polymer/Materials Research

Many challenging problems in the modern science and technology are related to preparation, properties, and utilization of novel functional materials. The polymer chemistry and the chemical microelectronics programs represent parts of the multidisciplinary effort in this field. The many-pronged approach includes: synthesis and molecular characterization of well-defined block and graft copolymers; preparation of new engineering thermoplastics and liquid crystalline materials; synthesis, modification and processing of polymers in super-critical carbon dioxide; chemical design of hybrid polymers for catalysis and photoredox activity, polymers for microelectronics applications including 193 nm and 157 nm photoresists and low-k dielectrics, and defined microstructures.

Research projects span a wide range of chemical analysis science and include, but are not limited to, biosensors, nanoscopic materials, neurochemistry, microvolume separations and analysis, protein adsorption, supercritical fluids and single-molecule analysis; for examples of currently active research projects please see the list below. The division has strong relationships with a large number of companies in the pharmaceutical, chemical and scientific instrumentation industries, which provide continued support of research fellowships and the Analytical Seminar series.

Recent Research Results

Perovskite Solar Cells

Two-dimensional, 2D, perovskites, with a formula of (RNH3)2MAn-1PbnI3n+1, have shown impressive photovoltaic device efficiency...

Polymer Fluorination

Fluorination of the donor polymer is a widely accepted method to improve the power conversion efficiency of organic...

Better Solar Cells

Researchers from North Carolina State University, in collaboration with the You Group here at...

Representative Publications

Synthetic Control over Orientational Degeneracy of Spacer Cations Enhances Solar Cell Efficiency in Two-Dimensional Perovskites.
Jun Hu, Iain W. H. Oswald, Samuel J. Stuard, Masrur Morshed Nahid, Ninghao Zhou, Olivia F. Williams, Zhenkun Guo, Liang Yan, Huamin Hu, Zheng Chen, Xun Xiao, Yun Lin, Zhibin Yang, Jinsong Huang, Andrew M. Moran, Harald Ade, James R. Neilson, and Wei You.
ACS Appl. Polym. Mater., 2019, 1 (4), pp 804–814

Green-Solvent-Processed Conjugated Polymers for Organic Solar Cells: The Impact of Oligoethylene Glycol Side Chains.
Zheng Chen, Liang Yan, Jeromy James Rech, Jun Hu, Qianqian Zhang, and Wei You.
ACS Appl. Polym. Mater., 2019, 1 (4), pp 804–814

Catalyst-Controlled Stereoselective Cationic Polymerization of Vinyl Ethers.
A. J. Teator, F. A. Leibfarth.
Science 29 Mar 2019, Vol. 363, Issue 6434, pp. 1439-1443

General Post-Annealing Method Enables High-Efficiency Two-Dimensional Perovskite Solar Cells.
Liang Yan, Jun Hu, Zhenkun Guo, Hong Chen, Michael F. Toney, Andrew M. Moran, and Wei You.
ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces, 2018, 10 (39), pp 33187–33197

A Universal Platform for the Electrodeposition of Ligand-Free Metal Nanoparticles from a Water-in-Oil Emulsion System.
Matthew William Glasscott, Andrew David Pendergast, and Jeffrey E. Dick.
ACS Appl. Nano Mater., Just Accepted Manuscript

Chameleon-Like Elastomers with Molecularly Encoded Strain-Adaptive Stiffening and Coloration.
Mohammad Vatankhah-Varnosfaderani, Andrew N. Keith, Yidan Cong, Heyi Liang, Martin Rosenthal, Michael Sztucki, Charles Clair, Sergei Magonov, Dimitri A. Ivanov, Andrey V. Dobrynin, Sergei S. Sheiko.
Science 30 Mar 2018, Vol. 359, Issue 6383, pp. 1509-1513

Mimicking Biological Stress–Strain Behaviour with Synthetic Elastomers.
Mohammad Vatankhah-Varnosfaderani, William F. M. Daniel, Matthew H. Everhart, Ashish A. Pandya, Heyi Liang, Krzysztof Matyjaszewski, Andrey V. Dobrynin & Sergei S. Sheiko.
Nature volume 549, pages 497–501 (28 September 2017)

The Curious Case of Fluorination of Conjugated Polymers for Solar Cells.
Qianqian Zhang, Mary Allison Kelly, Nicole Bauer, and Wei You.
Acc. Chem. Res., 2017, 50 (9), pp 2401–2409

Surpassing 10% Efficiency Benchmark for Nonfullerene Organic Solar Cells by Scalable Coating in Air from Single Nonhalogenated Solvent.
Long Ye, Yuan Xiong, Qianqian Zhang, Sunsun Li, Cheng Wang, Zhang Jiang, Jianhui Hou, Wei You, Harald Ade.
Advanced Materials, Volume 30, Issue 8, February 22, 2018, 1705485