Thomas Epps, Chemistry

We are designing systems that will encapsulate a drug while it travels to a targeted area within the body, and then release the drug at that desired location, such as in a cancer cell or tumor tissue. Even deeper, we’re looking at how to get the drug to specific locations within a target cell so that it can better do its job.

BRIAN NUNN - Associate Professor/Thomas and Kipp Gutshall Chair, Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering, University of Delaware

Featured image in Veeco Scanning Probe Microscopy Calendar (June 2006)

Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) image of crystallites from a poly(isoprene--styrene--ethylene oxide) ultrathin block copolymer film, flow-coated onto a surface modified silicon substrate.

Thomas Epps III is an Associate Professor and the Thomas & Kipp Gutshall Chair of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at the University of Delaware, with a joint appointment in Materials Science and Engineering. Prior to his faculty appointment at UD, he was a National Research Council (NRC) Postdoctoral Fellow at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in Gaithersburg, MD.

Prof. Epps is a graduate of the Chemical Engineering Department at MIT (B.S. 1998, M.S. 1999). He earned his Ph.D. in 2004 from the University of Minnesota- Twin Cities in Chemical Engineering.

His research group at UD focuses on the design, synthesis, and characterization of polymeric materials that exhibit nanoscale self-assembly for use in applications including conducting membranes, nanoscale templates, coatings, and drug delivery materials. As an MLK Visiting Associate Professor, he worked closely with Prof. Tim Swager in the Department of Chemistry on novel materials that undergo controlled assembly processes.

Haq, E.; Toolan, D. T. W.; Emerson, J. A.; Epps, T. H., III; Howse, J. R.; Dunbar, A. D. F.; Ebbens, S. J. 2014 (accepted, Journal of Polymer Science: Part B - Polymer Physics) "Real Time Laser Interference Microscopy for Bar-Spread Polystyrene/Poly (methyl methacrylate) Blends"

Kelley, E. G.; Murphy, R. P.; Seppala, J. E.; Smart, T. P.; Hann, S. D.; Sullivan, M. O.; Epps, T. H., IIINature Communications 2014 "Size evolution of highly amphiphilic macromolecular solution assemblies via a distinct bimodal pathway." DOI: 10.1038/ncomms4599 
*Highlighted on NPR, Philadelphia Station (WHYY)*

Holmberg, A. L.; Stanzione, J. F., III; Wool, R. P.; Epps, T. H., III2014(ASAP, ACS Sustainable Chemistry and Engineering) "A Facile Method for Generating Designer Block Copolymers from Functionalized Lignin Model Compounds." DOI: 10.1021/sc400497a

Young, W. S.; Kuan, W. F.; Epps, T. H., IIIJournal of Polymer Science: Part B - Polymer Physics 201452(1), 1-16 ([invited review article]) "Block Copolymers for Rechargeable Lithium Batteries." 
*Inside Cover Article

Mastroianni, S. E.; Patterson, J. P.; O'Reilly, R. K.; Epps, T. H., IIISoft Matter 20139(42), 10146-10154 "Poly(methyl methacrylate-block-vinyl-m-triphenylamine): synthesis by RAFT polymerization and melt-state self-assembly."

Luo, M.; Epps, T. H., IIIMacromolecules 201346(19), 7567-7579 "Directed Self-Assembly of Block Copolymer Thin Films: Current and Future Trends." 
*Front Cover Article

Emerson, J. A.; Toolan, D. T. W.; Howse, J. R.; Furst, E.M.; Epps, T. H., III,Macromolecules 201346(16), 6533-6540 "Determination of Solvent-Polymer and Polymer-Polymer Flory-Huggins Interaction Parameters for Poly(3-heyxlthiophene) via Solvent Vapor Swelling."

Theato, P.; Sumerlin, B. S.; O'Reilly, R. K.; Epps, T. H., IIIChemical Society Reviews 201342, 7055-7056 "Stimuli-Responsive Materials."

Patterson, J. P.; Kelley, E. G.; Murphy, R, P.; Moughton, A. O.; Robin, M. P.; Lu, A.; Colombani, O.; Chassenieux, C.; Cheung, D.; Sullivan, M. O.; Epps, T. H., III; O'Reilly, R. K., (in press) Macromolecules 2013, "Solution assembly of amphiphilic homopolymers containing pincer ligands." 
*Patterson and Kelley are co-first authors*

Epps, T. H., III; Mahanthappa, M. K., Journal of Polymer Science: Polymer Physics 201351(7) 461-462 "From fundamental science to advanced technologies" 
*Front Cover Article*

Luo, M.; Seppala, J. E.; Albert, J. N. L.; Lewis, R. L., III; Mahadevapuram, N.; Stein, G. E.; Epps, T. H., IIIMacromolecules 201346(5) 1803-1811 "Manipulating Nanoscale Morphologies in Cylinder-Forming Poly(styrene-b-isoprene-b-styrene) Thin Films Using Film Thickness and Substrate Surface Chemistry Gradients."

Petzetakis, N.; Robin, M. P.; Patterson, J. P.; Kelley, E. G.; Cotanda, P.; McHale, R.; Bomans, P. H. H.; Sommerdijk, N. A. J. M.; Dove, A. P.; Epps, T. H., III; O'Reilly, R. K., ACS Nano 20137(2) 1120-1128 "Hollow Block Copolymer Nanoparticles Through a Spontaneous One-Step Structural Reorganization."

Mastroianni, S.; Epps, T. H., IIILangmuir 2013, 29(12) 3864-3878 ([invited feature article]) "Interfacial Manipulations: Controlling Nanoscale Assembly in Bulk, Thin Film, and Solution Block Copolymer Systems." 
*Front Cover Article*

Kelley, E. G.; Albert, J. N. L.; Sullivan, M. O.; Epps, T. H., IIIChemical Society Reviews 2013, (ASAP) ([invited tutorial article]) "Stimuli-responsive copolymer solution and surface assemblies for biomedical applications" 
DOI: 10.1039/c3cs35512h

Patterson, J. P.; Cotanda, P.; Kelley, E. G.; Moughton, A. O.; Lu, A.; Epps, T. H., III; O'Reilly, R. K., Polymer Chemistry 20134 2033-2039 "Catalytic Y-shaped Amphiphilic Homopolymers - Aqueous nanoreactors for high activity, low loading SCS pincer catalysts"

Seppala, J. E.; Lewis, R. L., III; Epps, T. H., IIIACS Nano 20126(11) 9855-9862 "Spatial and orientation control of cylindrical nanostructures in ABA triblock copolymer thin films by raster solvent vapor annealing (RSVA)." 

Tureau, M. S.; Epps, T. H., IIIMacromolecules201245(20) 8347-8355 "Effect of Partial Hydrogenation on the Phase Behavior of Poly(isoprene-b-styrene-b-methyl methacrylate Triblock Copolymers."

Mayeda, M.K.; Kuan, W.-F.; Young, W.-S.; Lauterbach, J.A.; Epps, T. H., III,Chemistry of Materials201224(14), 2627-2634 "Controlling Particle Location with Mixed Surface Functionalities in Block Copolymer Thin Films." 

Labiano, A.; Dai, M.; Taylor, D.; Young, W.-S.; Epps, T. H., III, Rege, K.; Vogt, B. D., Microporous and Mesoporous Materials2012160, 143-150 "Slow Release Kinetics of Mitoxantrone from Ordered Mesoporous Carbon Films."

Tureau, M. S.; Kuan, W. F.; Rong, L.; Hsiao, B. H.; Epps, T. H., III,Macromolecules201245(11), 4599-4605 "Inducing Order from Disordered Copolymers - On Demand Generation of Triblock Morphologies Including Networks."

Young, W.; Epps, T. H., IIIMacromolecules201245(11), 4689-4697 "Ionic Conductivities of Block Copolymer Electrolytes with Various Conducting Pathways: Sample Preparation and Processing Considerations."

Kuan, W.F.; Roy, R.; Rong, L.; Hsiao, B.; Epps, T.H., IIIACS Macro Letters,20121 519-523 "Design and Synthesis of Network-Forming Triblock Copolymers Using Tapered Interfaces." 
*Highlighted in ACS Noteworthy Chemistry online*

Labiano, A.; Dai, M.; Young, W.-S.; Stein, G.; Cavicchi, K.; Epps, T.H., III; Vogt, B., Journal of Physical Chemistry C 2012116, 6038-6046 "Impact of Homopolymer Pore Expander on the Morphology of Mesoporous Carbon Films using Organic-Organic Self-Assembly."

Albert, J.N.L.; Young, W.; Lewis, R.L., III; Bogart, T.D.; Smith, J.; Epps, T.H., IIIACS Nano 20126(1) 459-466 "Systematic Study of the Effect of Solvent Removal Rate on the Morphology of Solvent Vapor Annealed ABA Triblock Copolymer Thin Films."

Patterson, J.P.; Sanchez, A.M.; Petzetakis, N.; Smart, T.P.; Epps, T.H., III; Portman, I.; Wilson, N.R.; O'Reilly, R.K., Soft Matter 20128(12) 3322-3328 "A simple approach to characterizing block copolymer assemblies: graphene oxide supports for high contrast multi-technique imaging." 
*Front Cover Article*
*Top Ten Most-Download January 2012*
*Highlighted in Materials Today*

Kelly, J.Y.; Albert, J.N.L.; Howarter, J.A.; Stafford, C.M.; Epps, T.H., III, Fasolka, M.J., Journal of Polymer Science: Polymer Physics 201250(4) 263-271 "Manipulating Morphology and Orientation in Thermally-Responsive Block Copolymer Thin Films."

Lee, C.; Smart, T.P.; Guo, L.; Epps, T.H., III; Zhang, D., Macromolecules,201144(24) 9574-9585 "Synthesis and Characterization of Amphiphilic Cyclic Diblock Copolypeptoids from N-Heterocyclic Carbene-Mediated Zwitterionic Polymerization of N-Substituted N-Carboxyanhydride."

Young, W.; Albert, J.N.L; Schantz, A.B.; Epps, T.H., IIIMacromolecules,201144(20) 8116-8123 "Mixed-salt Effects on the Ionic Conductivity of Lithium-doped PEO-Containing Block Copolymers."

Lu, A.; Smart, T.P.; Epps, T.H., III; Longbottom, D.A.; O'Reilly, R.K.,Macromolecules201144(18) 7233-7241 "L-Proline functionalized polymers prepared by RAFT polymerization and their assemblies as supported organocatalysts."

Albert, J.N.L.; Kim, J.; Stafford, C.M.; Epps, T.H., IIIReview of Scientific Instruments201182, 0651031-0651037. "Controlled Vapor Deposition Approach to Generating Substrate Surface Energy/Chemistry Gradients."

Kelley, E. G.; Smart, T. P.; Jackson, A. J.; Sullivan, M. O.; Epps, T. H., III.Soft Matter20117(15), 7094-7102. "Structural changes in block copolymer micelles induced by cosolvent mixtures."

Roy, R.; Park, J. K.; Young, W.; Mastroianni, S.; Tureau, M. S.; Epps, T. H., IIIMacromolecules201144(10), 3910-3915. "Gyroid Networks in Tapered Diblock Copolymers." 

Albert, J. N. L.; Bogart, T. D.; Lewis, R. L.; Beers, K. L.; Fasolka, M. J.; Hutchison, J. B.; Vogt, B. V.; Epps, T. H., IIINano Letters201111(3), 1351-1357. "Gradient Solvent Vapor Annealing of Block Copolymer Thin Films Using a Microfluidic Mixing Device."

Tsui, O. K. C., Epps, T. H., IIIJournal of Polymer Science: Part B - Polymer Physics201048(24), 2531-2532. "The American Physical Society Division of Polymer Physics Special Issue Introduction."

Kelly, J. Y.; Albert, J. N. L.; Howarter, J. A.; Kang, S.; Stafford, C. M.; Epps, T. H., III; Fasolka, M. J., ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces20102(11), 3241-3248. "Propagating Deprotection Wave Fronts in Thermally Responsive Block Copolymer Thin Films."

Tureau, M. S.; Rong, L.; Hsiao, B.; Epps, T. H., IIIMacromolecules2010,43(21), 9039-9048. "Phase Behavior of Neat Triblock Copolymers and Copolymer/Homopolymer Blends Near Network Phase Windows."

Albert, J. N. L.; Epps, T. H., IIIMaterials Today201013(6) 24-33 ([invited review article]) "Self-Assembly in Block Copolymer Thin Films"

Albert, J. N. L.; Baney, M. J.; Stafford, C. M.; Kelly, J. Y.; Epps, T. H., III,ACS Nano2009, 3(12), "Generation of Monolayer Gradients in Surface Energy and Surface Chemistry for Block Copolymer Thin Film Studies."

Stefik, M.; Mahajan, S.; Sai, H.; Epps, T. H., III; Bates, F.S.; Gruner, S. M.; DiSalvo, F. J.; Wiesner, U., Chemistry of Materials2009, 21(22), 5466-5473. "Ordered three- and five-ply nanocomposites from ABC block terpolymer microphase separation with niobia and aluminosilicate sols."

Tureau, M. S.; Epps, T. H., IIIMacromolecular Rapid Communications2009, 30(20) 1751-1755. "Nanoscale Networks in Poly(isoprene-b-styrene-b-methyl methacrylate) Triblock Copolymers."

Singh, N.; Tureau, M. S.; Epps, T. H., IIISoft Matter2009, 5(23) 4757-4762. "Manipulating Ordering Transitions in Interfacially Modified Block Copolymers."

Young, W.; Epps, T. H., IIIMacromolecules2009, 42 (7); 2672-2678 "Salt doping in PEO-containing block copolymers: counterion and concentration effects"

Roskov, K.E.; Epps, T.H., III; Berry, B.C.; Hudson, S.D.; Tureau, M.S.; Fasolka, M.J., Journal of Combinatorial Chemistry2008, 10(6), 966-973. "Preparation of Combinatorial Arrays of Polymer Thin Films for Transmission Electron Microscopy Analysis."

Young, W.S.; Brigandi, P.J.; Epps, T.H., III,Macromolecules,2008, 41(17), 6276-6279. "Crystallization-induced lamellar-to-lamellar thermal transition in salt-containing block copolymer electrolytes."

Pathak, J.A.; Twigg, J.N.; Nugent, K.E.; Ho, D.L.; Lin, E.K.; Mott, P.H.; Robertson, C.G.; Vukmir, M.K.; Epps, T.H., III; Roland, C.M.,Macromolecules2008, 41(20), 7543-7548. "Linear and Nonlinear Mechanical Response of a Polyurea Segmented Block Copolymer."

Epps, T. H., III; DeLongchamp, D. M.; Fasolka, M. J.; Fischer, D. A.; Jablonski, E. L. Langmuir2007, 23(6); 3355-3362. "Substrate Surface Energy Dependent Morphology and Dewetting in an ABC Triblock Copolymer Film."

Stafford, C.M.; Roskov, K.E.; Epps, T. H., III; Fasolka, M.J. Review of Scientific Instruments 2006, 77(2), 0239081-0239087 "Generating Thickness Gradients of Thin Polymer Films via Flow Coating."

Epps, T. H., III; Bates, F.S. Macromolecules 2006, 39(7), 2676-2682. "Effect of Molecular Weight on Network Formation in Linear ABC Triblock Copolymers."

Epps, T. H., III; Chatterjee, J.; Bates, F. S. Macromolecules 2005, 38(21), 8775-8784. "Phase Transformations Involving Network Phases in ISO Triblock Copolymer-Homopolymer Blends."

Epps, T. H., III; Cochran, E. W.; Bailey, T. S.; Waletzko, R. S.; Hardy, C. M.; Bates, F. S.Macromolecules 2004, 37, 8325-8341. "Ordered Network Phases in Linear Poly(isoprene-b-styrene-b-ethylene oxide) Triblock Copolymers."

Epps, T. H., III; Cochran, E. W.; Hardy, C. M.; Bailey, T. S.; Waletzko, R. S.; Bates, F. S.Macromolecules 2004, 37, 7085-7088. "Network Phases in ABC Triblock Copolymers."

Epps, T. H., III; Bailey, T. S.; Waletzko, R.; Bates, F. S. Macromolecules2003, 36, 2873-2881. "Phase Behavior and Crystallization of Lithium Perchlorate-Doped Poly(isoprene-b-styrene-b-ethylene oxide) and Poly(styrene-b-isoprene-b-ethylene oxide) Triblock Copolymers."

Epps, T. H., III; Bailey, T. S.; Pham, H. D.; Bates, F. S. Chemistry of Materials 2002, 14, 1706-1714. "Phase Behavior of Lithium Perchlorate-Doped Poly(styrene-b-isoprene-b-ethylene oxide) Triblock Copolymers."

Bailey, T. S.; Epps, T. H., III; Bates, F. S. Macromolecules 2002, 35, 7007-7017. "A noncubic triply periodic network morphology in poly(isoprene-b-styrene-b-ethylene oxide) copolymers."

Visiting Associate Professor 2013-2014
Hosted by Prof. Tim Swager, Department of Chemistry

Thomas H. Epps III is an Associate Professor and the Thomas & Kipp Gutshall Chair of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at the University of Delaware, with a joint appointment in Materials Science and Engineering. His research focuses on novel materials that undergo controlled assembly processes.

2013-2014 Scholars