Synthesis, microwave-assisted polymerization, and polymer properties of fluorinated 2-phenyl-2-oxazolines: A systematic study

M. Lobert, H.M.L. Thijs, T. Erdmenger, R. Eckardt, C. Ulbricht, R. Hoogenboom, U.S. Schubert

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We present a detailed systematic study of the synthesis and ability of fluorinated 2-phenyl-2-oxazolines to undergo polymerization. The synthesis of these compounds is based on a two-step procedure that gives the desired 2-oxazolines in moderate-to-good yields. All the compounds were fully characterized by IR and NMR (1H, 13C, and 19F) spectroscopy, mass spectrometry, and elemental analysis. The 2-oxazolines were subsequently used as monomers for living cationic ring-opening polymerization (CROP) with microwave irradiation as the heat source (T= 140-ÝC), nitromethane as the solvent, and methyl tosylate as the initiator. The linear first-order kinetic plots of the polymerizations accompanied by a linear increase of the molecular weight with conversion and low polydispersity index (PDI) values (generally below 1.30) indicate a living polymerization mechanism. The resulting polymerization rates reflect a strong sensitivity to the quantity of fluorine substituents in general and the presence or absence of ortho-fluoro substituents of the phenyl ring in particular. All the polymers were isolated and characterized by size-exclusion chromatography and MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry. Finally, a detailed investigation of selected polymer properties was performed by using differential scanning calorimetry, thermogravimetric analysis, and contact-angle measurements, thus resulting in structure-property relationships. Whereas the thermal properties of the polymers are mostly influenced by the presence of ortho-fluoro substituents, the surface properties are mainly determined by the presence of para- and/or metafluoro substituents. -© 2008 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10396-10407
JournalChemistry : A European Journal
Issue number33
Publication statusPublished - 2008


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