Alternating and random-sequence polyesters with distinct physical properties†
Polymers with controlled sequence can exhibit unique properties and functions compared to their random counterparts. While many methodologies have been utilized to synthesize sequence-controlled polymers, there is still a strong need to build a fundamental understanding of sequence–property correlations. Here we report the design and development of an alternating pendant-functionalized polyester and compare it to a random polyester of the same composition. Our results showed that such polyesters exhibit distinct physical properties compared to their random counterparts. It was found that polyesters with controlled alternating sequences are less ductile and exhibit higher Young's modulus compared to random polyesters. The alternating and random polyesters showed distinctly different hydrolytic degradation profiles. Fluorescence quenching studies showed that the sequence of the polyesters influences their ability to interact with fluoride ions. These interesting results suggest that polyesters with alternating pendant groups exhibit unique properties and would allow access to different applications.