Unlocking features of locked-unlocked anionic polymerization

Cun Li, Xuefei Leng, Li Han, Hongyuan Bai, Lincan Yang, Chao Li, Songbo Zhang, Pibo Liu, Hongwei Ma

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Due to unique characteristics of 1-(tri-isopropoxymethylsilylphenyl)-1phenylethylene (DPE-Si(OiPr)3), quantitative locked (the living species became dormant for endcapping with DPE-Si(OiPr)3) and unlocked (the dormant species regained the activity after adding the alkali metal alkoxides) anionic polymerization has been realized. In this work, the features of locked-unlocked anionic polymerization were carefully investigated with sequential feeding strategies. By combining the results from SEC, 1H-NMR, MALDI-TOF-MS and DFT calculations, the main features of this mechanism were revealed as follows: (1) it is a kinetically controlled process (kDS and kSS) due to the inherent features of different living species. Comparable initiation and propagation rates are required to ensure the simultaneous chain growth from unlocked living species; (2) the transformation between locked and unlocked species depends on the alkalinity of the alkali metal alkoxides; the higher the alkalinity, the higher the unlocking efficiency. And promisingly, these findings may contribute to the modulation of molecular weight distribution and facilitate the preparation of position-defined functionalized polymers in the future.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)7696-7703
Number of pages8
JournalPolymer Chemistry
Issue number48
StatePublished - 2020

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2021-01-04
Acknowledgements: This work was financially supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (no. 21674017, 21871037, and 21805025).


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