oa South African Journal of Chemistry - The Design of Group 4 Cyclopentadienyl, Olefin-Polymerisation Catalysts



This review focuses on Group 4 metallocenes and their use in the polymerisation of <font FACE="Symbol">a</font>-olefins. A brief overview of their history as well as theories concerning the mechanistic details of the polymerisation reaction precedes a discussion on the design of these polymerisation catalysts. This latter section will cover what effect metal, ligand and bridge choice has on polymerisation activity and the physical properties of the polymer produced. A major drawback to the use of these catalysts in industrial processes is related to the cost of their synthesis, the major problem here being the formation of an unwanted diastereomer during the synthetic process. The techniques employed to overcome these problems are therefore also reviewed. Lastly, the large volume of literature dealing with these catalysts makes it difficult to compare the polymerisation data of different catalysts and laboratories. The review therefore contains tables that attempt to collect the details of the most important polymerisation studies in a comparable and easy to reference manner.


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