This book and the following volume (1188: Controlled Radical Polymerization: Materials) are addressed to chemists and polymer scientists interested in radical processes, and especially in controlled/living radical polymerization. The chapters in this first volume summarize the most recent advances in the field, including mechanistic, materials, and applications aspects. Controlled/living radical polymerization (CRP) or reversible-deactivation radical polymerization (RDRP, as recommended by IUPAC) is among the most rapidly expanding areas of chemistry and polymer science. This first volume provides an overview of the current status of controlled/living radical polymerization (CRP) systems, and also discusses important issues relevant to all radical polymerization methods. The mechanistic and kinetic aspects of ATRP are also covered, as well as more complex mechanisms such as "hybrid" processes. Thirty-seven chapters published in two volumes show that there have been significant developments in CRP over the last 15 years. New systems have been discovered; substantial progress has been achieved in understanding the mechanism and kinetics of reactions involved in all CRP systems.
As a result of these advances, significant progress has been made towards developing a comprehensive relationship between molecular structure and macroscopic properties. Several commercial applications of CRP have been announced and it is anticipated that new products made by CRP will soon be on the market.