Macromolecular Chemistry and Physics

Cover image for Vol. 217 Issue 3

August 12, 2008

Functional Polymers: Nanomechanical Actuators from Self-Organizable Dendronized cis-PPAs

Functional Polymers: Nanomechanical Actuators from Self-Organizable Dendronized cis-PPAs

Jonathan G. Rudick and Virgil Percec*

Polyarylacetylenes have attracted significant interest recently due to their helical conformation and potential optoelectronic properties. Among the challenges faced when developing functional polymers based on polyarylacetylenes is the inherent structural instability of the polyene backbone. Self-assembling dendrons sterically disfavor the cisoid conformation through which 6-electrocyclization proceeds in cis-polyarylacetylenes. V. Percec and J. G. Rudick discuss in their Feature Article how dendronized helical cis-polyphenylacetylenes (cis-PPAs) self-organized in oriented fibers are capable of displacing macroscopic objects 250 times their weight due to an unprecedented cisoid-to-transoid conformational isomerism of the polyene backbone. Generalizing this approach to other self-organizable dendronized polymers will provide a collection of nanomechanical actuators.

Macromol. Chem. Phys. DOI:10.1002/macp.200800271

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