Prof. Coates is the Tisch University Professor in the Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology at Cornell University. His teaching and research interests involve science at the interface of organic, inorganic, and materials chemistry. The broader impacts of his research include benign polymers and chemical synthesis, the utilization of renewable resources, and materials safe and economical energy storage and conversion.
2017 Election to the National Academy of Sciences
2017 Election to the National Academy of Inventors
2016 Kathryn C. Hach Award for Entrepreneurial Success, American Chemical Society
2015 Award in Applied Polymer Chemistry, American Chemical Society
2013 Doctor of Science, honoris causa, Wabash College
2012 Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Award
2012 DSM Performance Materials Award
2011 Election to American Academy of Arts & Sciences
2011 World's Top 100 Chemists, 2000-2010, Thomson Reuters
2009 Carl S. Marvel Creative Polymer Chemistry Award, American Chemical Society
2009 Award for Affordable Green Chemistry, American Chemical Society
2006 American Association for the Advancement of Science Fellow
2001 Arthur C. Cope Scholar Award, American Chemical Society
2000 David and Lucile Packard Foundation Fellowship in Science and Engineering
2000 Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award
2000 Arnold and Mabel Beckman Foundation, Young Investigator Award
1999 Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow
1997 Camille and Henry Dreyfus New Faculty Award
1995 NSF Postdoctoral Research Fellowship in Chemistry
1994 Arthur Amos Noyes Postdoctoral Research Fellowship, Caltech
1990 Fannie and John Hertz Foundation Predoctoral Fellowship
The research focus of my group is the development of new synthetic strategies for producing polymers of defined structure. The control of polymer composition, architecture, stereochemistry, and molecular weight allows the indirect control of polymer properties via polymer morphology. Our research projects are interdisciplinary, addressing problems at the interface of organic, inorganic, organometallic, and polymer chemistry.
De Hoe, G.; Zumstein, M.; Tiegs, B.; Brutman, J.; McNeill, K.; Sander, M.; Coates, G.; Hillmyer, M. “Sustainable Polyester Elastomers from Lactones: Synthesis, Properties, and Enzymatic Hydrolyzability” J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2018, 140, 963–973.
Liu, C.; Kubo, K.; Wang, E.; Han, K.-S.; Yang, F.; Chen, G.; Escobedo, F.; Coates, G. W.; Chen, P. “Single Polymer Growth Dynamics” Science 2017, 358, 352–355.
Eagan, J. E.; Xu, J.; Di Girolamo, R.; Thurber, C. M.; Macosko, C. W.; LaPointe, A. M.; Bates, F. S.; Coates, G. W. “Combining Polyethylene and Polypropylene: Enhanced Performance with PE/iPP Multiblock Polymers” Science 2017, 355, 814−816.
Childers, M. I.; Vitek, A. K.; Morris, L. S.; Widger, P. C. B.; Ahmed, S. M.; Zimmerman, P. M.; Coates, G. W. “Isospecific, Chain Shuttling Polymerization of Propylene Oxide using a Bimetallic Chromium Catalyst: A New Route to Semicrystalline Polyols” J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2017, 139, 11048–11054.
DiCiccio, A. M.; Longo, J. M.; Rodríguez-Calero, G. G.; Coates, G. W. “Development of Highly Active and Regioselective Catalysts for the Copolymerization of Epoxides with Cyclic Anhydrides: An Unanticipated Effect of Electronic Variation” J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2016, 138, 7107−7113.
Van Zee, N. J.; Sanford, M. J.; Coates, G. W. “Electronic Effects of Aluminum Salph Complexes in the Copolymerization of Propylene Oxide with Tricyclic Anhydrides: Access to Well-Defined, Functionalizable Aliphatic Polyesters” J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2016, 138, 2755−2761.
Long, B. K.; Eagan, J. M.; Mulzer, M.; Coates, G. W. “Semi-Crystalline Polar Polyethylene: Ester-Functionalized Linear Polyolefins Enabled by a Functional Group Tolerant, Cationic Nickel Catalyst” Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2016, 55, 7106−7110.
Lamb, J. R.; Mulzer, M.; LaPointe, A. M.; Coates, G. W. “Regioselective Isomerization of 2,3-Disubstituted Epoxides to Ketones: An Alternative to the Wacker Oxidation of Internal Alkenes” J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2015, 137, 15049−15054.
Cowman, C. D.; Padgett, E.; Tan, K. W.; Hovden, R.; Gu, Y.; Andrejevic, N.; Muller, D.; Coates, G. W.; Wiesner, U. B. “Multicomponent Nanomaterials with Complex Networked Architectures from Orthogonal Degradation and Binary Metal Backfilling in ABC Triblock Terpolymers” J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2015, 137, 6026–6033.
In the news
- Scientists enhance recyclability of waste plastic
- Chemist wins National Academy of Science award
- Pollack lauds ‘amazing Cornellians’ in State of the University speech
- Energy center receives $12.6 million in renewed funding
- Coates wins 2022 Eni Award for environmental solutions in chemistry
- The 2030 Project to marshal faculty to solve climate crisis
- Startups flourish in Cornell’s clean energy ecosystem
- Cornell joins NY-led group to propose hydrogen energy hub
- Chemistry summer program = research + confidence
- Polymer enables tougher recyclable thermoplastics
- Magnetic tweezers reveal polymers’ hidden properties
- Research and restore: How Cornell scientists are conserving Earth’s resources
- Alumni-fueled startups pitch clean-energy solutions
- Chemistry students offer summer session for peers
- Cornell Atkinson awards $1.1M to innovative projects
- Chemists create faster-degrading plastic for marine uses
- Sustainable Plastics
- ‘Triangle 2’ plastic containers may see environmental makeover
- Coates honored by American Chemical Society
- Sustainable polymers center gets NSF renewal grant
- Ecolectro receives $1.7M from DOE to accelerate hydrogen fuel development
- Cornell joins battery research partnership
- Plastics, Can’t Get Away from Using Them
- $10.75M grant aids next-gen fuel cell development
- Inaugural Presidential Postdoctoral Fellows selected