Approach

Cascade approach

ONE-FLOW will explore the following enabling functions in step-wise and team-grouped fashion. First, orthogonality will be ‘forced’ by compartmentalization with Pickering Emulsions/Polymer-somes and with switchable smart fluids. Then, orthogonality will be proactively enforced by optimized choice of reagents, solvents and conditions. Thereafter, the ONE-FLOW processing will be digitalized and transferred in a platform technology. Each of these central project objectives represents a tangible outcome of the project with value on its own. Each represents a work package. The last objective and work package will consider foundation. Each workpackage and task is specific, achievable, and relevant. The definition of deliverables/milestones makes clear how that is measurable and time-bound.

 Factory approach

  • ‘The Compartmentalized Smart Factory’ = We will develop and introduce compartmentalization approaches for flow: (i) polymersomes composed of block copolymers – ‘Organic self-assembly’, (ii) Pickering emulsions stabilized by solid particles – ‘Inorganic self-assembly’, (iii) structured microfluidic multiphases – ‘Physical self-assembly’, and (iv) chemisorption-anchored catalysts – ‘Mechanical self-assembly’.
  • ‘The Green-Solvent Spaciant Factory’ = Pharmacy likes to largely minimize use of non-green solvents and has banned the ones with largest environmental hamper [Prat, Green Chem, 2016]. Our approach aims to ban such solvents completely, with the exception of a very few alcohols, water and functional green solvents. The latter allow to open and close interim reaction spaces alike reactors do, but more elegantly; thus, being named spaciants.
  • ‘The Systemic Operations Factory’ = If full orthogonality is provided alike in the (bio )chemical assembly line, unit operations of chemical engineering virtually vanish to a systemic operation in the flow cascade. The ultimate level of harmonization will be such continuous “One-Flow” processing for which an engineering methodology is envisioned.
  • ‘The Digital Machine-to-Machine Factory’ The “Internet of Chemical Things” is poised to alter the landscape of chemical synthesis, enabling simple machine-to-machine data transfer and relegation of process monitoring to central computer systems under the oversight of chemists.
  • ‘The Fully Continuous Integrated Factory’ = To ensure right process selection and to avoid dead-end scenarios, a process-design evaluation is performed, using life-cycle assessment and cost analysis to monitor sustaina¬bility. In this way, a maximal impact between green chemistry and green engineering is enforced. This together with a ‘critical process parameter map’ will result in a foundation towards a commercial platform technology, i.e. the innovation leaves academic doors. This toolbox will make amenable the new kind of processing to all chemists.