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Molecular Design Criteria for Board-Shaped Liquid Crystalline Dyes

The properties of organic dyes depend as much on their intermolecular interactions as on their molecular structure. While it is generally predictable what supramolecular structure would be ideal for a specific application, the generation of specific supramolecular structures by molecular design and suitable processing methods remains to be a challenge. A versatile approach to different supramolecular structures has been the application of mesomorphism in conjunction with alignment techniques and self-assembly at interfaces. Reviewed here is the columnar mesomorphism of board-shaped dyes perylene, indigo, isoindigo, diketopyrrolopyrrole, and quinoxalinophenanthrophenazine. They generate a larger number of different supramolecular structures than conventional disc-shaped (discotic) mesogens because of their non-circular shape and directional intermolecular interactions. The mesomorphism of all but the perylene derivatives is systematically and comprehensively covered for the first time.

Eichhorn, et al. ChemPlusChem 2021, 86, 319

Diketopyrrolopyrrole and isoindigo are commercially important dyes that have recently found broad application as electron acceptor and light-absorbing groups in organic semiconductors. Their self-assembly into specific supramolecular structures to control optoelectronic properties has been hampered by limited options for substitution and their high propensity for crystallization. Reported here is a molecular design that directs self-assembly into previously elusive columnar mesophases of π-π stacking cores. Although attachment of bis(trisoctyloxyphenyl)-1,3,5-triazine groups to both ends of diketopyrrolopyrrole-thiophene and isoindigo cores generated mesomorphic dyes of similar overall shapes and dimensions, distinct differences in their mesomorphism and optoelectronic properties were observed.

Taing, et al. ChemPlusChem 2019, 84, 103

Reduced Weld Strength in Microcellular Nylon-6 Shells

Microcellular plastic parts reduce weight and increase dimensional stability, but a significant decrease in weld strength is
observed when the weld region reaches the cell area. In this study, 30 wt.% glass fiber reinforced nylon-6 shells with weight
reductions of 0%, 7%, and 10% were fabricated by microcellular injection molding with nitrogen gas followed by vibration
welding. Although the weld depth of the vibration weld was much less than the thickness of the cell-free surface layer,
microstructural analysis of fracture surfaces by scanning electron microscopy and optical microscopy confirmed the presence
of cells at the weld region that lowered burst pressures by 17% and 22% for shells with weight reductions of 7% and 10%,
respectively, when compared with the burst pressure of 1.16 MPa for solid shells. The irregular sizes and elongated shapes of
these cells suggest that they were generated in the molten polymer by secondary nucleation of residual nitrogen gas during the
vibration welding process. This assumption is corroborated by the fact that no cells are formed in the weld area of solid shells with 0% weight reduction and is consistent with recently reported similar findings for glass fiber reinforced polypropylene.

Guo, et al. Welding in the World, 2019, 63 (4), 1115

Polydiacetylene Containing Materials

Polydiacetylenes are well-established one-dimensional organic semiconductors that have been generated by photochemical and thermal polymerizations of diacetylenes in single crystals, gel phases, thin films, and membranes. Their formation in mesophases, such as liquid crystals, has been surprisingly little studied although higher-ordered mesophases should support the topochemical polymerization of diacetylenes (1,3-butadiyne groups) and may give access to large domains of uniformly aligned materials. The polymerization of diacetylenes in a mesophase may also increase the stability of the selfassembled supramolecular structure. Here, the dye and discotic mesogen tetraazaporphyrin was decorated with eight diacetylene-containing alkyl chains to probe its mesomorphism and conversion into multifunctional polydiacetylene materials. While the incorporation of diacetylene groups supports columnar mesomorphism, successful photopolymerization required the presence of directing amide groups that suppressed columnar in favor of nematic mesomorphism. Still, the polymerization of the nematic mesophase generated a soluble nematic polydiacetylene of significantly higher molecular weight (Mn = 77 kDa or 25 monomer units by gel permeation chromatography) than what has been obtained in gel phases of related compounds. The formation of polydiacetylene was confirmed by Raman spectroscopy, and its nematic structure was verified by UV−vis spectroscopy, polarized optical microscopy, and X-ray diffraction. Both its nematic structure and the incorporation of eight side chains per discotic unit provide the polydiacetylene with sufficient solubility for casting thin films on substrates. Atomic force microscopy studies of films on silicon wafers revealed a grid-like structure of connected nanofibers. This study demonstrates the requirements for the formation of multifunctional mesomorphic polydiacetylene materials from mesomorphic precursors and their advantages. Optimization of the presented molecular design should give access to other mesophases and, consequently, functional polydiacetylene materials with tunable structures and optoelectronic properties.

Tahir, et al. Langmuir 2019, 35, 15158

Intrinsic porosity in polymeric materials arises from the formation of a continuous network of interconnected voids and is a direct consequence of the shape and rigidity of the molecular building blocks. To obtain well-defined pores with narrow size distributions, the polymerization of rigid and sterically hindered monomers must not interfere with the pore formation and should avoid the use of additives that may occupy voids. Polydiacetylenes can be generated by the topochemical polymerization of diacetylene-bearing molecules favorably arranged in crystals, gels, thin films, or vesicles. Polydiacetylene formation in amorphous materials has been sparsely studied because higherorder self-assembled structures are assumed to be required for the topochemical polymerization of 1,3-butadiyne to occur. In this study, a bulky hexachlorocyclotriphosphazene core (N3P3Cl6) was functionalized with six diacetylenecontaining alkyl chains and successfully converted to an intrinsically porous multifunctional polydiacetylene. The successful formation of the polydiacetylene was confirmed by Raman spectroscopy, and the porous structure of the resulting materials was verified by X-ray diffraction and Brunauer−Emmett−Teller surface area measurements. This investigation revealed a significant change in the porous structure after polymerization, leading to a 5-fold increase in specific surface area. Overall, the topochemical polymerization of diacetylenes is a promising strategy for the preparation of functional materials, which is shown to be compatible with rather amorphous phases of bulky molecules. The results obtained from this investigation give access to a range of porous polydiacetylene materials for potential applications in organic electronics, gas adsorption, and other related fields.

Tahir, ACS Appl. Polym. Mater. 2021, 3, 1, 191