Project Details Preferred names for polymers

Project No.: 
Start Date: 
01 July 2008
End Date: 
30 September 2017
Division Name: 


To provide an up to date list of preferred, acceptable, and not acceptable (outdated) structure-based names for constitutional units and for organic polymers.


During the last decades the general principles on how to name polymers have been modified several times. In addition, nomenclature of organic chemistry has made a tremendous development. This project intends to remove inconsistencies arising from recommendations for naming polymers being published at different times. In principle it will comprise the following tasks:

1. To screen all relevant old and current IUPAC polymer nomenclature documents for structure-based and source-based names or names of constitutional units and list the various used names together with the corresponding document name or acronym and year.

2. To set up a table that contains all names used in IUPAC documents for a given polymer or constitutional unit.

3. To classify these names into preferred, acceptable and not acceptable.


June 2016 update – The provisional recommendations titled “Preferred names of constitutional units for use in structure-based names of polymers” is available for public till 14 Nov 2016.

Oct 2017 update – The Recommendations are published in PAC, released AOP 26 Sep 2017;; Pure Appl. Chem. 2017; 89(11): 1695–1736

project completed

Page last updated: 16 October 2017