Bisfunctionalized m-phenylene ethynylene imine oligomers were polymerized in the polar solvent acetonitrile, resulting in high-molecular weight poly(m-phenylene ethynylene imine)s. It is hypothesized that this polymerization, which proceeds through the reversible metathesis of imine bonds, is driven by the folding of the long m-phenylene ethynylene imine chains. Upon conducting the polymerization in a series of solvents in which the m-phenylene ethynylene oligomers exhibit different folding stabilities, it was possible to correlate the molecular weight of the resulting poly(m-phenylene ethynylene imine)s with the helical stability of the corresponding oligomers. The polymerization was also demonstrated to be reversible and responsive to solvent and temperature changes.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry