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Establishment of a molecular design to obtain visible-light-activated azoxy polymer actuators

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Abstract

The development of visible-light-activated photoswitches has significantly progressed in the past few decades. Herein, two kinds of photoresponsive azoxy polymers were prepared directly from bis-/trinitro-functionalized monomers via an efficient small molecular synthetic method with ultraviolet/visible light irradiation under metal-free and mild conditions. This strategy avoids the use of metal complexes and toxic compounds, while proceeding with high yields (up to 97%) and excellent selectivity without generating azo, amine, or inorganic compounds. Moreover, polymerization showed an efficient process with very high monomer conversion and perfect selectivity. The obtained main-chain linear and hyperbranched azoxy polymers were characterized by 1H NMR, GPC, UV-vis and FT-IR spectra. The π–π* absorptions of the obtained polymers in the UV-vis spectra showed a significant red-shift to the visible light region. Therefore, the photoisomerization of the prepared polymers can be driven by visible light, representing the first visible-light-driven aromatic azoxy polymer actuators.

Graphical abstract: Establishment of a molecular design to obtain visible-light-activated azoxy polymer actuators

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Publication details

The article was received on 05 Feb 2018, accepted on 14 Mar 2018 and first published on 15 Mar 2018


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C8PY00199E
Citation: Polym. Chem., 2018, Advance Article
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    Establishment of a molecular design to obtain visible-light-activated azoxy polymer actuators

    Y. Chen, L. Wang, X. Pan, J. Wu, W. Zhang, Z. Zhang and X. Zhu, Polym. Chem., 2018, Advance Article , DOI: 10.1039/C8PY00199E

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