DFG-FOR 2177: Integrated Chemical Microlabs (InCheM)

Research Goals

The research unit is looking to explore the possibilities and limitations of integrated miniaturized chemical synthesis and analysis units. To this end an interdisciplinary research network will carry out basic research in the fields of chemical microsynthesis and integration of analytical concepts for in-line monitoring of chemical processes in real-time. In this context the lab-on-a-chip-technology is an excellent platform linking these different fields. In addition standard micro structured continuous flow reaction systems shall also be investigated for comparison. This approach will offer new insights into the world of micro synthesis that will enable not only a better understanding but also to gain access to new pathways in microreaction technology and chip-based analytics. The research that is planned within this unit has the following two focal points:

I. New strategies for organic synthesis and catalysis in microsystems

II. In-line analytics and monitoring of chemical processes in microsystems

Focus I is concerned with the development of strategies for implementation of novel innovative chemical syntheses in dedicated microfluidic platforms with integrated analytical functionalities. Focus II includes analytical chemistry and the development of suitable technologies for real-time characterization, control and monitoring of the syntheses developed in focus I. In this context the parameters and effects of down-scaling of reactions from the macro- to the microscale are also investigated including comparative studies with classical continuous flow systems. Contrary to almost all work in the literature, however, the focus is set not on the downscaling of established, simple model reactions, but on the investigation of current synthetic concepts with an emphasis on catalysis in microfluidic systems With such an integrated analytical platform and the possibility of real-time monitoring, e.g. temporally and spatially resolved monitoring of short-lived intermediates, new insights in understanding chemical reactions are possible Preliminary work of us shows that such data, obtained from microsystems with minute chemical consumption within short times, can also be very valuable for the development and optimization of syntheses in classical macroscale process.

last modified: 15.11.2015