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THE WORLD OF “POLYMER SCIENCE”

It is widely known that plastics, colors, some textile fibres, photographic films, packaging materials, toys, instant adhesives, tires, tubes etc. are composed by synthetic polymer. However, only a few people are aware of the recent progress and applications of polymers in technologically advenced fields such as medicine, space, microelectronics.

Polymeric materials have replaced body parts and organs (bones, heart, lungs, artificial arteries etc.), and are being used to the controlled transfer and release of drugs during cancer chemotherapy. Many parts of aircrafts and spacecrafts are constructed by new polymers with high mechanical / thermal resistance and low weight. Microelectronic systems, solid state circuits, computers and laser printers are based on polymers to carry out functionalities which other materials can not carry out.

Professor Nikos Hadjichristidis, of the Chemistry Department of the University of Athens, has received international recognition for his contribution to the “Polymer Science”.

The era of polymeric materials

THE COMPOSITION OF POLYMERIC MATERIALS WITH DEFAULT PROPERTIES

Polymers are macromolecules composed of many repeated small structural units (monomer components) joined together by chemical bonds. They are divided in two big categories: natural and synthetic polymers. Natural polymers are basically structural materials (cellulose, keratin, glycogen, etc.) and functional components (proteins, polysaccharides, DNA, RNA) of living organisms. Synthetic polymers apply in almost all fields of human activity.

The research work of professor Nikos Hadjichristidis in Polymers, in collaboration with other partners and postgraduate students of the Chemistry Department at the University of Athens, mainly focuses on the composition of original (bio) polymeric materials with default structure (linear, star, miktoarm star, ring, comb, ω-functionalized etc.) as well as on the study of the effect of architecture on the properties of polymers. The ultimate goal is the composition of polymeric materials with default properties and their implementation in cutting edge technologies.

Nikos Hadjichristidis, professor of Chemistry Department of University of Athens, is a graduate of the same University. He fulfilled his PhD in Chemistry at the State University of Liege, and his Post Doctoral studies at the University of Liege as well as at the National Research Council of Canada and as Lecturer at the Athens University. He has been a visiting professor at Fudan University in Shanghai, at the University of Sheffield, at the Institute of Technology in Stockholm, at the Technical University of Denmark, at the National University of the South in Argentina, at the University Simon Bolivar in Caracas, at the University of Akron, at the Research Centres ExxonMobil (USA) and REPSOL (Spain) and at the University of Ioannina.

INTERNATIONAL RECOGNITION

The international awards of Nikos Hadjichristidis include the following:

- Chemistry of Thermoplastic Elastomers Award, 2011 (American Chemical Society, Rubber Division)

- Cooperative Research Award in Polymer Science and Engineering, 2010, (American Chemical Society, Division of Polymeric Materials: Science and Engineering)

- International Award of the Society of Polymer Science, 2007 ( The Society of Polymer Science, Japan)

He has also been honored with the Doolittle Award of the American Chemical Society (ACS) in 2003, the Association of Greek Chemists Award in 2000, Sciences Award of Empeirikeion Foundation in 1994 and the Chemistry Award of the Academy of Athens in 1989. He is honorary doctor of the University of Ioannina and Simon Bolivar in Caracas.

NATIONAL AND KAPODISTRIAN UNIVERSITY OF ATHENS

Nikos Hadjichristidis, Professor of Industrial Chemistry (Polymer Science).

Department of Chemistry, National & Kapodistrian University of Athens.

http://pmse.sites.acs.org http://www.rubber.org Laboratory of Industrial Chemistry Laboratory of Industrial Chemistry American Chemical Society