Double Diels−Alder Strategies to Soluble 2,9- and 2,9,6,13-Tetraethynylpentacenes, Photolytic [4 + 4] Cycloadditions, and Pentacene Crystal Packing

Four new classes of organic solvent soluble ethynylpentacene derivatives (2,9-, 2,10-, 2,6,9,13-, 2,6,10,13-) have been prepared by complementary, versatile, double Diels−Alder strategies. Functional groups on the A, C, and E rings can be manipulated to increase the solubility, modulate the electronics, and alter the solid-state packing. Cycloaddition reactions with diene 2 and 1,4,5,8-anthradiquinone (3) or ortho-quinodimethane 19 with 1-butyl-3-methylimidazolim iodide (18) as the iodide source (a significant improvement over NaI) and benzoquinone (20) followed by in situ aromatization afforded the quinones 4, 5, 21, and 22, respectively. For the 2,9- and 2,10- families, a one-pot desilylation/triflation was developed. Palladium(0) coupling and reductive aromatization afforded 2,9-di(triisopropylsilylethynyl)pentacene (10) and 2,10-di(triisopropylsilylethynyl)pentacene (11), respectively. Photodimerization of these pentacenes afforded the air-stable [4 + 4] cycloaddition pentacene precursors (tetrakisnaphthotricyclo[,5]dodecanes, 1215). Thermal cycloreversion of the dimers (∼13 J/g, ∼4 kcal/mol) produces the parent pentacenes (10 or 11). The tetrasubstituted family utilized a parallel route with extra versatility as the timing of the Grignard and palladium(0) coupling step may be varied depending upon the functional group combinations desired. The subsequent reactions provided the tetraethynylpentacenes 2830, 3335 (para-isomers), and 38 (meta-isomer). X-ray crystallography analysis of 28, 29, and 33 revealed various π−π stacked packing motifs that differ from the unfavorable herringbone pattern of pentacene.