Green chemistry technologies fit into at least one of the three focus areas below. Technologies that do not fit within at least one focus area may not fall within the scope of the program.
Focus Area 1: Greener Synthetic Pathways
This focus area involves designing and implementing a novel, green pathway to produce either a new or existing chemical substance.
Examples include synthetic pathways that:
- Use greener feedstocks that are innocuous or renewable (e.g., biomass, triglycerides)
- Use novel reagents or catalysts, including biocatalysts and microorganisms
- Use natural processes, such as fermentation or biomimetic syntheses
- Are atom-economical
- Are convergent syntheses
Focus Area 2: Greener Reaction Conditions
This focus area involves improving conditions other than the overall design or redesign of a synthesis. Greener analytical methods often fall within this focus area.
Examples include reaction conditions that:
- Replace hazardous solvents with solvents that have less impact on human health and the environment
- Use solventless reaction conditions and solid-state reactions
- Use novel processing methods that prevent pollution at its source
- Eliminate energy- or material-intensive separation and purification steps
- Improve energy efficiency, including reactions running closer to ambient conditions
Focus Area 3: The Design of Greener Chemicals
This focus area involves designing and implementing chemical products that replace more hazardous products.
Examples include chemical products that are:
- Less toxic than current products
- Inherently safer because they reduce the likelihood or severity of accidents
- Recyclable or biodegradable after use
- Safer for the atmosphere (e.g., do not deplete ozone or form smog)
Read on about the Award Categories.