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FI EMS Colloquium

Controlling macromolecular architecture: polymer rings, discs, bottlebrushes and some potential applications.

Markus Müllner
Polymer Nanostructures Group in the Key Centre for Polymers and Colloids at The University of Sydney, Australia.

  1:00 PM     SR41


The use of polymer architectures and polymer nanomaterials is on a steady rise,1 and much owed to reversible deactivation radical polymerisation, as it has established new levels of control and freedom to polymer design and synthesis. Tailor-made block copolymers or highly branched macromolecules are thus increasingly used in the fabrication of advanced functional materials, spanning a rather large area for diverse applications, including energy and medicine.

In the first part of this talk I will focus on a highly branched macromolecule, a so-called molecular polymer bottlebrush (MPB) to highlight its potential use in nanomedicine.2,3 I will further highlight the use of MPBs to generate soft matter with unusual properties.4 In the second part of the talk, I will highlight the use of heterogenous photocatalysts in light-driven polymerisation, such as RAFT polymerisation.5 In the third part of the talk, I will touch on recent advances in using our materials as structure-directing agents to yield electrode materials for batteries.


  1. J.-F. Lutz et al. Nat. Rev. Mater. 2016, 1, 16024.
  2. M. Müllner,Chem. Commun. 2022, 58, 5683.
  3. P. Ramamurthiet al. Adv. Healthc. Mater.2022, 2200163.
  4. T. Pelras et al. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2018, 140, 12736.
  5. K. Hakobyanet al. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2019, 58, 1828.
  6. M. Schöttle et al. Chem. Mater. 2020, 32, 4716.
  7. Y.T. Cheng et al. ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces<b> 2023;, 15, 12261.



Markus Müllner heads the Polymer Nanostructures Group in the Key Centre for Polymers and Colloids at The University of Sydney, Australia. His research group has extensive expertise in the synthesis and application of molecular polymer bottlebrushes. Markus and his team are interested in a variety of polymer-related topics, from the synthesis of polymer architectures and their use in self-assembly or nanomedicine applications, to photocatalysis in polymer design and polymer-templated nanomaterials.


Markus is currently an Associate Professor and Australian Research Council Future Fellow in the School of Chemistry. He studied polymer and colloid chemistry at the University of Bayreuth, Germany. He enjoyed research visits to the University of Lund (Sweden) and The University of Melbourne (Australia), before receiving his doctorate in polymer chemistry in 2012 under the supervision of Prof. Axel H.E. Müller. From 2013-2015, Markus was a McKenzie Fellowship recipient working with Prof. Frank Caruso at the University of Melbourne. Markus serves presently on the International Advisory Boards for Polymer Chemistry, Macromolecular Rapid Communications and Macromolecular Chemistry and Physics. Since 2019, he is also the Chair of the Royal Australian Chemical Institute (RACI) NSW Polymer group.