Electrochemical and spectroelectrochemical studies on the reactivity of perimidine–carbazole–thiophene monomers towards the formation of multidimensional macromolecules versus stable π-dimeric states
During research on cross-linked conducting polymers, double-functionalized monomers were synthesized. Two subunits potentially able to undergo oxidative coupling were used—perimidine and, respectively, carbazole, 3,6-di(hexylthiophene)carbazole or 3,6-di(decyloxythiophene)carbazole; alkyl and alkoxy chains as groups supporting molecular ordering and 14H-benzo[4,5]isoquinone[2,1-a]perimidin-14-one segment promoting CH· · · O interactions and π–π stacking. Electrochemical, spectroelectrochemical, and density functional theory (DFT) studies have shown that potential-controlled oxidation enables polarization of a specific monomer subunit, thus allowing for simultane-ous coupling via perimidine and/or carbazole, but mainly leading to dimer formation. The reason for this was the considerable stability of the dicationic and tetracationic π-dimers over covalent bonding. In the case of perimidine-3,6-di(hexylthiophene)carbazole, the polymer was not obtained due to the steric hindrance of the alkyl substituents preventing the coupling of the monomer radical cations. The only linear π-conjugated polymer was obtained through di(decyloxythiophene)carbazole segment from perimidine-di(decyloxythiophene)-carbazole precursor. Due to the significant difference in potentials between subsequent oxidation states of monomer, it was impossible to polarize the entire molecule, so that both directions of coupling could be equally favored. Subsequent oxidation of this polymer to polarize the side perimidine groups did not allow further crosslinking, because rather the π–π interactions between these perimidine segments dominate in the solid product.
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Australian Research Council