Synthesis and self-assembly of fluorene vinylene alternating copolymers in “Hairy Rod” architecture: side chain mediated tuning of conformation, microstructure and photophysical properties,

Colak DG , Cianga I,Cianga L and Yagci Y, Designed Monomers and Polymers, 19(6), 508-534,(2016) DOI:10.1080/15685551.2016.1169382 

In the present work, we demonstrate that the side chain choice, as a tunable parameter, is an effective strategy to drive molecular ordering, packing motifs and overall microstructure of a conjugated polymer. By applying Wittig polycondensation novel ‘rod-coil’ structures, in ‘hairy-rod’ architecture, based on fluorenylene vinylene copolymers with well-defined oligomeric side chains were synthesized using ‘T’-shaped or ‘Cross’-shaped p-terphenyl macromonomers. The overall character of the copolymers was systematically varied by attaching of hydrophilic PEG 2000, hydrophobic polar oligo-ε-caprolactone or hydrophobic and non-polar oligostyrene side chains. Self-assembling of the copolymers by simple direct dissolution method was achieved in various solvents by modifying their selectivity in relation to the side chain or main chain. The morphology investigations demonstrated that unique nanofeatures obtained in each case (helical foldamers, vesicles, disks, or helical turns) depend on the nature, number, and position of the side chains which influence the photophysical properties. The ‘hairy-rod’ topology is also responsible for the self-assembly of the materials in molten state, as thermal analysis revealed, and the propensity of the new synthesized conjugated main chain for helical folding was evidenced, as well.


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