On February 27th 2024, Christian Conrads, PhD student in the group of Prof. Sonja Herres-Pawlis at RWTH Aachen University, gave an oral presentation at the Koordinationschemie-Treffen (KCT) 2024. At this conference, chemists from the field of coordination and organometallic chemistry present their latest research results.

In the UPLIFT project, Christian Conrads is working on the development of novel metal catalysts for the ring-opening polymerization of cyclic esters. At the KCT, he talked about his recent study on non-toxic iron catalysts that can be applied in the synthesis of bio-based and biodegradable polyester polylactide (PLA). There, he showed that the combination of simple guanidine ligands with iron(II) chloride can lead to highly active catalysts being able to polymerize lactide within minutes, which brings these catalysts closer to a large-scale application.

The KCT 2024 conference took place in Innsbruck, Austria, with a focus on coordination and organometallic chemistry. In its 18th edition, the conference brought together experts in an interdisciplinary setting to discuss past advancements in the field. Participants enjoyed three days of activities amidst the stunning landscape of the Austrian Alps.