The Chemistry Department is delighted to welcome Dr. Benjamin Elling as an Assistant Professor of Chemistry. His recently renovated lab, in the space formerly occupied by Albert J. Fry, will investigate new methods to synthesize and reprocess polymers. This semester he will be teaching CHEM 373, an upper-level course on polymer chemistry.
Professor Elling received his BA in chemistry from Cornell University, where he synthesized polymers for anion exchange membranes in the lab of Geoff Coates. He then attended Stanford University, where he became the first PhD student of Yan Xia and developed methods for sequence-specific polymerization via the ring-opening metathesis of substituted cyclopropenes. Prior to his appointment at Wesleyan, Professor Elling was a postdoctoral scholar in the lab of Professor Will Dichtel, where he designed new covalent adaptable networks and investigated strategies for mixed plastic compatibilization.
Here at Wesleyan, Professor Elling will combine his interests in synthetic methods development and sustainability. His lab will focus on leveraging strain energy to create polymers capable of controlled degradation, reprocessing thermosets through novel exchange chemistries, and incorporating renewable building blocks such as carbon dioxide into materials. The Chemistry Department is very pleased to have him join us.