CO2-responsive polymeric materials: synthesis, self-assembly, and functional applications
CO2 is an ideal trigger for switchable or stimuli-responsive materials because it is benign, inexpensive, green, abundant, and does not accumulate in the system. Many different CO2-responsive materials including polymers, latexes, solvents, solutes, gels, surfactants, and catalysts have been prepared. This review focuses on the preparation, self-assembly, and functional applications of CO2-responsive polymers. Detailed discussion is provided on the synthesis of CO2-responsive polymers, in particular using reversible deactivation radical polymerization (RDRP), formerly known as controlled/living radical polymerization (CLRP), a powerful technique for the preparation of well-defined (co)polymers with precise control over molecular weight distribution, chain-end functional groups, and polymer architectural design. Self-assembly in aqueous dispersed media is highlighted as well as emerging potential applications.