Polymerization of low molecular weight hydrogelators to form electrochromic polymers†
We present a method for the polymerization of low molecular weight hydrogelators to form polymers with unique structures. Carbazole-protected amino acids are shown to form hydrogels by self-assembly into fibrous structures. We show that is possible to directly electropolymerize the hydrogels. This results in the formation of microporous electrochromic polymers with distinctive structure. Polymers formed from the same gelator without the pregelation step show more compact structures. This method opens the possibility of creating polymers templated from pre-assembled gels that have the potential to be used in a wide range of applications.