Continuous assembly of polymers via solid phase reactions†
The continuous assembly of polymers in the solid state via ring-opening metathesis polymerization (ssCAPROMP) is reported as an effective method for the fabrication of smooth, surface confined, cross-linked nanostructured films. Macrocross-linkers, polymers pre-functionalized with polymerizable pendent groups, were first deposited onto initiator-modified substrates via spin-coating, followed by film cross-linking via ssCAPROMP. The film thickness is tunable by adjusting the reaction time, and multilayered films can be achieved through reinitiation steps, generating complex and unique film architectures with nanometer precision. The technique developed herein allows for controlled and directional growth of cross-linked thin films from the substrate surface in the solid state.