Prof. Dr. Ulrich S. SCHUBERT
Phone: +49 3641 9-48201
Prof. Schubert is director of the Jena Center for Soft Matter (JCSM), spokesperson of the DFG CRC 1278 PolyTarget, PI and Research Area Coordinator of the Cluster of Excellence “Balance of the Microverse“, Coordinator of EU ITN “POLYSTORAGE“ and coordinator of the SPP 2248 “Polymer-based Batteries”. He is one of the world’s leading chemists and materials scientists and listed as “highly cited researcher”.
The major focus in the group research interest relates to chemistry, materials science and polymer science with important keywords such as: supramolecular chemistry; polymer chemistry; inkjet printing; nanoscience and nanotechnology; organic chemistry; biomaterials; nanolithography; self-healing materials; drug delivery systems; nanoparticle; self-assembly; poly(2-oxazoline)s; living polymerization; controlled radical polymerization; MALDI-TOF-MS; ESI-MS; analytical ultracentrifugation; chromatography; cell substrate interactions; cationic polymers. The main work within the group could be described with organic, supramolecular and macromolecular synthesis, detailed molecular characterization, inkjet printing, nanolithography, biointerfaces and nanocontainers.
Prof. Schubert is working on innovative materials for healthcare, sustainability and energy. His laboratory covers organic synthesis, macromolecular and supra-molecular chemistry, combinatorial and material research, advanced characterization, and nanoscience, including:
- Metallo-supramolecular polymers and batteries
- Tailor-made functional polymers and nanoparticles
- Responsive materials and optical metamaterials
- Organic solar cells and polymer LEDs
- High-throughput experimentation, inkjet-printing, and nanolithography
Prof. Schubert’s teaching includes undergraduate courses as well as graduate courses involving state-of-the-art research:
- Organic and macromolecular chemistry
- Polymers and energy
- Nanoengineering and nanostructured polymers
The Laboratory of Organic and Macromolecular Chemistry features a wide range of methods for the experimental characterization of functional materials including:
- Size exclusion chromatography (SEC), high pressure liquid chromatography (HPLC) and gas chromatography (GC) systems
- Biological cell culture facilities with Live cell imaging microscopy (Confocal-Laserscanning microscopy with superresolution, High-content microscopy), Flow cytometry and molecular biology equipment including RT-PCR and gel electrophoresis
- Mass spectrometry (ESI-TOF, MALDI-TOF MS/MS, ESI/APCI-TOF, MALDI-imaging
- (Cryo)transmission and scanning electron microscopy
- Asymmetric flow field-flow fractionation (AFFFF) and analytical ultracentrifugation (AUC)
- Atomic force microscopy (AFM) & Nanoindentation
Recent Research Results
The Schubert group’s research is based on a highly interdisciplinary background of its group members which consists of chemists, physicists, biologists and material scientists.
In the field of materials for life sciences, Schubert group focuses on the development of tailor-made polymers for the transport of genes and drugs, respectively. In particular, polymeric nanoparticulate materials are investigated (within the framework of DFG CRC 1278 – Polytarget). Moreover, the interaction between polymeric materials and cells is studied. With the recently completed cleanroom facility at the ACP on the Beutenberg Campus, it is now possible to transfer research results of suitable cell and organ-specific nanoparticle formulations into clinical test samples for targeted delivery of active pharmaceutical ingredients produced under GMP conditions. [1-4]
The nanochemistry labs synthesize nanoparticles or carbon nanotubes by non-classical methods (e.g., by microwave irradiation). Moreover, surfaces can be functionalized on the nm-level by electro-oxidative lithography.[5-8]
Various advanced characterization techniques allow the detailed analysis of the different polymeric materials providing information on the (absolute) molar mass (e.g., by analytical ultracentrifugation, mass spectrometry), sizes of polymer assemblies up to other polymer properties (e.g., thermal proper-ties). In particular, electron microscopy (cryo-TEM, SEM) allows a deeper insight into polymeric as-semblies, particles etc. [9-14]
A great interest of the Schubert group display the self-healing, self-organization and self-assembling materials and systems. Supramolecular interactions (metal complexes, ionic interactions, hydrogen bonding) are utilized for the design of molecular building blocks (e.g., for energy and electron transfer) as well as of supra-molecular polymers. Latter materials are also studied in the context of self-healing polymers. These materials are also fabricated based on reversible covalent interactions. [15-21]
With polymers for energy, new battery technologies as alternative to the classical lithium batteries are investigated – these systems are based on organic materials and polymers. Redox-active polymers are used as active materials within thin batteries (e.g., printable bat-teries, solar batteries) as well as in redox-flow batteries. The usage of organic materials allows the abstention of critical metals (like cobalt or vanadium). [22-26]
High-throughput experimentation and tailor-made macromolecules are another topic of the group of Prof. Schubert. In order to obtain well-defined polymers (with tailor-made properties), living and controlled polymerization methods are utilized (e.g., RAFT polymerization or CROP of oxazolines). For instance, LCST-type polymers were synthesized by these methods. Moreover, high-throughput experimentation methods allow the fabrication of polymer libraries in order to elucidate structure-property relationships.[27-29]
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