A new method for synthesis of functional polymers

May 20, 2016

Enables high-efficiency synthesis with no byproducts

Alternating copolymers, in which several monomers with different characteristics are arranged in an alternating sequence, are valuable in various fields as special functional polymers. They are synthesized usually by polycondensation reactions, which require prefunctionalized starting materials with reactive functional groups such as halogen and boron units. Such polycondensation reactions always produce an equivalent amount of byproducts.

Dialkoxybenzene polymers are promising materials for preventing overcharging of lithium-ion batteries, which are widely used in smartphones and laptops, but their synthesis usually involves a complicated, multistep process. Development of efficient and selective methods for the synthesis of dialkoxybenzene polymers has been a long standing research subject.

RIKEN CSRS and the Organometallic Chemistry Laboratory researchers have developed an efficient route for the synthesis of alternating copolymers containing dialkoxybenzene and various hydrocarbon backbone units through C-H bond addition to C=C double bonds by using rare earth metal catalysts.

This method does not generate any byproduct and will be useful for synthesis of various polymer materials that would be capable of providing overcharge protection for rechargeable lithium-ion batteries.


Original article
Journal of the American Chemical Society doi:10.1021/jacs.6b03859
X. Shi, M. Nishiura, Z. Hou,
"C-H Polyaddition of Dimethoxyarenes to Unconjugated Dienes by Rare Earth Catalysts".

Zhaomin Hou; Group Director
Masayoshi Nishiura; Senior Research Scientist
Advanced Catalysis Research Group