A renewable bisphenol, 4,4′-(butane-1,4-diyl)bis(2-methoxyphenol), was synthesized on a preparative scale by a solvent-free, Ru-catalyzed olefin metathesis coupling reaction of eugenol followed by hydrogenation. After purification, the bisphenol was converted to a new bis(cyanate) ester by standard techniques. The bisphenol and cyanate ester were characterized rigorously by NMR spectroscopy and single-crystal X-ray diffraction studies. After complete cure, the cyanate ester exhibited thermal stability in excess of 350 °C and a glass transition temperature (Tg) of 186 °C. As a result of the four-carbon chain between the aromatic rings, the thermoset displayed a water uptake of only 1.8 % after a four day immersion in 85 °C water. The wet Tg of the material (167 °C) was only 19 °C lower than the dry Tg, and the material showed no significant degradation as a result of the water treatment. These results suggest that this resin is well suited for maritime environments and provide further evidence that full-performance resins can be generated from sustainable feedstocks.
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