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Keywords:

  • gelation;
  • oligomers;
  • polyamides;
  • polycondensation;
  • self-organization

Abstract

A series of new bisurea derivatives having in common two co-oligoamide arms have been synthesized and characterized by NMR, SEC, DSC, SEM, and optical microscopy. These compounds are only soluble at high temperature in aprotic polar solvent. By cooling the solutions, gelation occurs if the concentration of these bisurea derivatives is higher than 3% (w/w). Comparisons with derivatives devoid of oligoamide arms leading no gelation suggest that two kinds of interaction are necessary to get the self-assembling, namely intermolecular hydrogen-bonding between urea groups and between oligoamide arms. As these interactions induce interconnections in several directions, the possibility of building the long classical fibrous structures is limited. Accordingly, the ultrastructure of the gel consists only of short interconnected fibers. © 2008 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Polym Sci Part A: Polym Chem 46: 4122–4129, 2008