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Synthesis of Poly(bisisoindigo) Using a Metal-Free Aldol Polymerization for Thin-Film Transistor Applications

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journal contribution
posted on 16.03.2020, 15:30 by Anindya Ganguly, Keqiang He, Arthur D. Hendsbee, Maged Abdelsamie, Raymond N. Bennett, Yuning Li, Michael F. Toney, Timothy L. Kelly
Typical syntheses of conjugated polymers rely heavily on organometallic reagents and metal-catalyzed cross-coupling reactions. Here, we show that an environmentally benign aldol polymerization can be used to synthesize poly­(bisisoindigo), an analog of polyisoindigo with a ring-fused structural repeat unit. Owing to its extended conjugation length, poly­(bisisoindigo) absorbs across the UV/vis/NIR spectrum, with an absorption tail that reaches 1000 nm. Due to the four electron-deficient lactam units on each repeat unit, poly­(bisoindigo) possesses a low-lying LUMO, which lies at −3.94 eV relative to vacuum. Incorporation of the ring-fused monomer unit also lowered the overall torsional strain in the polymer backbone (relative to polyisoindigo), and the polymer was successfully used in prototype unipolar n-channel organic thin-film transistors.

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