ORGANIC CHEMISTRY OF MATERIALS
Learning outcomes of the course unit
Knowledge and understanding: the main goal is that the student acquire
the tools for the comprehension and the dissertation of bulk materials,
hybrid materials and nanomaterilas using the concepts acquired in
organic chemistry; particular attention will be paid to the influence of the
structure-activity relationship, and to modern organic reactions allowing
to tailor material properties.
Learning skills: students will acquire the specific language of the material
chemistry field and will achieve the ability to correlate the various
aspects of materials, from basic chemical properties to technological
Knowledge of the concepts developed in the Organic Chemistry 1,
Organic Chemistry 2 and in the Chemistry and technology of polymeric
Course contents summary
In the first part of the course, the degradation and resistance of organic
materials will be discussed, with focus on reactions under extreme
conditions. Scale for describing extreme acid or extreme basic conditions
will be introduced. Oxidation, pyrolysis and combustion and methods for
prevention will be described. The properties of organic materials relevant
for applications, and their connection with the molecular structure and
with intermolecular non-covalent interactions will be then illustrated. In
the second part of the course, the structure and chemical properties of
principal classes of organic materials of industrial interest will be
described, from ‘classical’ materials (wood, paper, fabrics, polymers) to
more specialized ones such as hybrid organic-inorganic materials,
nanomaterials and biomaterials, with examples of applications. Finally,
strategies for tailored modification of bulk materials, interfaces, and
organic nanomaterials will be discussed.
A-Reactivity (2 CFU) Kinetics in organic reactions and in organic material
chemistry. Degradation of organic materials by chemical treatments and
methods for avoiding it. Acidity and basicity extreme conditions: effect on
the various class of materials. Acidity and basicity scales in non-aqueous
media. Radical reactions: principles and applications in material
chemistry. Oxidation, autooxidation and photooxidation on organic
materials. Pyrolysis and combustion. Photodegradation and photostability
B-Structure (1 CFU) Principal classes of organic materials of industrial
interest. Classical organic materials: wood, paper, fabrics. Brief recall on
polymers (from polymer chemistry course) and focus on polymers for
high-tech applications. Gel forming materials. Organic coatings.
hybrid materials. Biomaterials. Organic nanomaterials. Carbonbased
nanomaterials: fullerene, nanotubes, nanographene.
Biointerphases. Examples of functional materials for advanced
applications. C-Properties (1 CFU) The supramolecular view of stiffness,
adhesiveness, plasticity, crystallinity and amorphous state.
Stereochemical properties of materials. Helicity. Swelling and gel
formation. Biodegradability. Self-healing. D-Tailored modification. (2 CFU)
Transformation of bulk material (e.g. biomineralization, carbon fibers).
Surface chemistry and surface treatments. Surface derivatization.
Bioconjugation and bio-ortogonal chemistry. Organic reactions on
Teachers' handouts. Sources for in-depth study F.A. Carey e R.J. Sundberg
Advanced Organic Chemistry 5th Edition, Springer, 2007 J. March
Advanced Organic Chemistry Reactions, Mechanisms, and Structure, 7th
Edition, John Wiley & Sons, 2013 Molecular Materials: Preparation,
Characterization, and Applications, Sanjay Malhotra, B. L. V. Prasad, Jordi
Fraxedas CRC press. Functional Organic Materials: Syntheses, Strategies
and Applications, Thomas J. J. Müller, Uwe H. F. Bunz, John Wiley & Sons,
At the end of the course students will be involved in the study and indepth
study of a topic of their interest, discussing it in front of teachers
Assessment methods and criteria
The exam consists of a written test and an oral test.
The knowledge required to pass the exam are:
Demonstration of knowledge and understanding, supported by basic
knowledge of Organic Chemistry, in applying these concepts to Materials
Chemistry with professional attitude and originality. Ability to apply
knowledge of Organic Chemistry of Materials in a broader and
multidisciplinary context, understanding the links with other subject of
the Chemistry Master Degree; maturity and knowledge necessary to
undertake further studies with a self-directed degree of autonomy
Demonstration of knowledge of the structure and reactivity of bulk
organic materials, hybrid materials and organic nanomaterials and their
applications. Knowledge of relationships between structure and
properties of organic materials.
Knowledge of main transformations and reactivity of organic materials
and of synthetic methods for their tailored modification.
The written exam consists of 3 questions, one of which is linked to the in-depth study chosen by the student, under the form of a case-study.
It is passed if 2/3 questions are answered correctly or, alternatively, if at
least 60% of the total content expressed is correct and comprehensive.
The oral examination consists of the discussion of the written exam with
a deepening of the theoretical part, in particular aspects not included in
the written exam.
Teacher's handouts will be available in various formats in the web fromthe Elly-SCVSA platform.