ECR Seminar: Dr Edwin Johnson; University of Sheffield
Monday, 5 December 4:00pm – 5:00pm
This seminar will be delivered in Chemistry Lecture Theatre 4 and Online Zoom. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org for zoom link and password.
Speaker: Dr Edwin Johnson; University of Sheffield
Host: Dr Isaac Gresham
Title: Polymers and Polaritons: facile functionalization of polymer brushes for strong light-matter coupling
Abstact/Biography: Dr. Edwin Johnson is a postdoctoral researcher in the group of Prof. Graham Leggett and Prof. Steven Armes at the University of Sheffield, where he is investigating the use of polymer brushes as interfacial scaffolds for both pigment molecules and photosynthetic proteins. Ed’s journey in the world of polymer chemistry began just north of Sydney at the University of Newcastle, where he completed his PhD.
In this seminar, Ed will discuss a versatile polymer system, PAGEO5MA, that can be easily modified with a number of relevant functional molecules (peptides, dyes etc.), with a special emphasis on their use as scaffolds for exciton (electron-hole pairs) transport. The Armes group is developing a new approach design of molecular photonic materials that combines biologically inspired design principles with the exciting new physics of strong light-matter coupling. In these systems, long-range exciton transport is achieved through the immobilization of pigments within polymer brushes at plasmonic interfaces. The brush functionalisation occurs post-polymerisation through reductive amination chemistry. Ed will discuss the effect of grafting density, polymer molecular weight, pigment size and reaction conditions on the degree of brush functionalisation, as measured by XPS, thereby introducing a framework for the rational design of these systems. Through the deposition of these polymers onto a gold nanowire array, the strong light-matter coupling possible in these systems will be demonstrated.
The ease with which PAGEO5MA can be functionalised with a range of proteins, enzymes, oligonucleotides and fluorescent dyes makes this seminar relevant to anyone interested in functional polymeric materials or surface modification.