2018 Polymer Chemistry Laboratory I

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Academic unit or major
Undergraduate major in Chemical Science and Engineering
Tokita Masatoshi  Takata Toshikazu  Ando Shinji  Kawauchi Susumu 
Class Format
Media-enhanced courses
Day/Period(Room No.)
Mon5-8(S422)  Tue5-8(S422)  
Course number
Academic year
Offered quarter
Syllabus updated
Lecture notes updated
Language used
Access Index

Course description and aims

This laboratory consists of three of four themes including those in Laboratory II; Theme A: X ray diffraction, C: Polymer solution properties and the volume-phase transition of polymer gel, and D: Conductive polymers.

This laboratory is a prerequisite class for students majoring polymer science to obtain necessary experimental skills. The aims are to enable the students to understand the crystalinne structure, phase separation, solution- and gel properties, and fundamental electrical properties of polymers together with obtaining skills for polymer property analyses such as X-ray diffraction and so on.
It is also aimed for students to learn how to summarize a research report and present the analysis results and discussion as an oral presentation.

Student learning outcomes

Students will learn to do the followings
Theme A: 1) Have an understanding of the basic elements of X-ray diffraction,and measure diffraction patterns using a powder X-ray diffractometer.
2) Analyze diffraction patterns of simple crystal systems (i.e., the cubic and hexagonal systems).
3) Determine crystallite size and crystallinity for polymer crystals.
Theme C:1)Give a theoretical explanation for the phase speparation and the volume-phase transition on the basis of Flory-Huggins equation.
2)Give a qualitative explanation on the mechanism for the temperature-induced phase transition of thermo-sensitive polymers.
3)Give an explanation on the correlation between the intrinsic viscosity and the polymer molecular weight.
4)Give an explanation on the relation between the gel preparation by crosslinkage and the gel properties.  
Theme D: 1)Have an understanding of the basic principal of conductivity of conjugated polymers, and measure conductance using electrochemical analyzer.
2)Have an understanding of the mechanism of electrochemical polymerization, and explain the relationship between the reaction
conditions and conductivity of obtained films.
3)Have an understanding of the structure of conjugated polymer, and explain the mechanism of solvatochromism and thermochromism.


X-ray diffraction, Crystal lattices, Miller indices, Structure factor, Crystallinity, Crystallite size, Gel, Volume-phase transition, Phase separation, Intrinsic viscosity, Condugated polymer, Conductivity, Electrochemical polymerization, Solvato- and thermochromism

Competencies that will be developed

Specialist skills Intercultural skills Communication skills Critical thinking skills Practical and/or problem-solving skills

Class flow

This laboratory course consists of three parts; 1st (Class 1 for guidance), 2nd (Class 2-8 for first theme), 3rd (Class 9-15 for second theme). Students are divided into three groups; One half is for theme A, two quarters are for theme C or D. Students who started with theme A will be grouped into theme C or D for the second theme, and vice versa. The course schedule below is for the former case. For the latter case, the schedule of the 2nd and 3rd parts should be exchanged. Students who conducted theme C or D in this laboratory course will be grouped into theme D or C in addition to theme B in the laboratory II for all the students to conduct all the themes A - D.

Course schedule/Required learning

  Course schedule Required learning
Class 1 Guidances on the whole course and the respective themes Understanding the course aims and the theoretical backgrounds of the respective themes.
Class 2 Theme A: Measurements of cubic structure crystals To measure the X-ray diffraction pattern of cubic structure crystals.
Class 3 Theme A: Crystal Structure Determination (I) Cubic structures To index the X-ray diffraction pattern and calculate the lattice parameters of materials with a cubic structure.
Class 4 Theme A: Measurements of hexagonal structure crystals / Crystal Structure Determination (II) Hexagonal structures To index the X-ray diffraction pattern and calculate the lattice parameters of materials with a hexagonal structure.
Class 5 Theme A: Identification of an unknown specimen / Precise lattice parameter measurements To identify an unknown specimen by X-ray diffraction procedures. / To determine the precise lattice parameters of materials by X-ray diffraction methods.
Class 6 Theme A: X-ray diffraction of polymer crystals To measure the X-ray diffraction pattern of polymer crystals.
Class 7 Theme A: Determination of crystallite size and crystallinity of polymer crystals To determine the average crystallite size and crystallinity of polymer crystals by X-ray diffraction pattern analysis.
Class 8 Theme A: Data reduction/Oral examination To organize the diffraction data and show the analysis results / Oral examination for evaluation of students' achievement.
Class 9 Theme C:Synthesis of linear polymer and gel samples or Theme D:Synthesis and electronic property of conjugated polymer: Electrochemical polymerization of pyrrole Theme C: Prepare the polymer solution and gel samples by radical polymerization of NIPA in the absence and the presence of crosslinking agent. ThemeD:Syntheize polypyrrole via electrochemical polymerization under certain conditions
Class 10 Theme C:Measurements on the turbidity of polymer solution and swelling ratio of polymer gel or Theme D:Measurement of conductivity Theme C:Measure the turbidity and the swelling ratio of solution and gel samples. ThemeD:Analyze conductivity of obtained polymer
Class 11 Theme C:Estimation of the molecular weight by the viscosity measurement and determination of the original research theme or ThemeD: Electrochemical polymerization of pyrrole and measurement of conductivity Theme C:Estimate the molecular weight by viscometry of the aq.polymer solution and determine a group-original research theme. ThemeD:Synthesize polypyrrole with different conditions, and analyze conductivity. Synthesize de-doped polypyrrole
Class 12 Theme C: Synthesis of linear polymer or gel samples for the original research theme or Theme D: Oxidative polymerization of decylthiophene and anaylsis of its structure Theme C: Prepare the polymer solution or gel samples depending on the group-original research theme. ThemeD:Synthesize polythiophene via oxidative polymerization. Chacterize thiophene monomer by H NMR and IR spectroscopy.
Class 13 Theme C: Synthesis of linear polymer or gel samples for the original research theme or Theme D: Purification of polydecylthiophene Theme C: Measure and analyze the turbidity or swelling ratio depending on the group-original research theme. ThemeD:Collect the polymer, and have an understanding of polymerization mechanism.
Class 14 Theme C: Conducting original research theme or Theme D: Observation of solvato- and thermochromism of polydecylthiophene ThemeC:Measure and analyze the turbidity or swelling ratio depending on the group-original research theme. ThemeD:Measure the UV–vis spectra of polymer, and observe the solvato- and thermo-chromism.
Class 15 Theme C: Oral presentation and Q&A or Theme D: Oral presentation Theme C:Oral presentation on each group-original theme and Q&A. ThemeD:Have an oral presentation about the structure and electronic property of conjugated polymer to check the understanding level.


Textbook for Polymer Chemistry Laboratory I & II

Reference books, course materials, etc.


Assessment criteria and methods

Assessment on the reports and the oral presentations or examination.

Related courses

  • CAP.P362 : Polymer Chemistry Laboratory II
  • CAP.P211 : Polymer Chemistry I (Step-Growth Polymerization)
  • CAP.P221 : Polymer Physics I (Polymer Solutions)
  • CAP.P212 : Polymer Chemistry II (Chain Polymerization)
  • CAP.P311 : Polymer Chemistry III (Polymer Reactions)
  • CAP.P312 : Polymer Chemistry IV (Crosslinking Reactions)
  • CAP.P222 : Polymer Physics II (Solid Structures)
  • CAP.P321 : Polymer Physics III (Rheology)
  • CAP.P322 : Polymer Physics IV (Physical Properties)

Prerequisites (i.e., required knowledge, skills, courses, etc.)

Chemical Engineering and Industrial Chemistry Laboratory I~III

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