Review Article | Published:

Rationally synthesized two-dimensional polymers

Nature Chemistry volume 5, pages 453465 (2013) | Download Citation

Abstract

Synthetic polymers exhibit diverse and useful properties and influence most aspects of modern life. Many polymerization methods provide linear or branched macromolecules, frequently with outstanding functional-group tolerance and molecular weight control. In contrast, extending polymerization strategies to two-dimensional periodic structures is in its infancy, and successful examples have emerged only recently through molecular framework, surface science and crystal engineering approaches. In this Review, we describe successful 2D polymerization strategies, as well as seminal research that inspired their development. These methods include the synthesis of 2D covalent organic frameworks as layered crystals and thin films, surface-mediated polymerization of polyfunctional monomers, and solid-state topochemical polymerizations. Early application targets of 2D polymers include gas separation and storage, optoelectronic devices and membranes, each of which might benefit from predictable long-range molecular organization inherent to this macromolecular architecture.

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Acknowledgements

The authors acknowledge financial support from the National Science Foundation (CHE-1056657 and CHE-1124754), a Sloan Research Fellowship, the Arnold and Mabel Beckman Foundation, and the Research Corporation for Science Advancement. J.W.C. acknowledges the National Science Foundation for a Graduate Research Fellowship.

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  1. Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology, Cornell University, Baker Laboratory, Ithaca, New York 14853, USA

    • John W. Colson
    •  & William R. Dichtel

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Correspondence to William R. Dichtel.

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https://doi.org/10.1038/nchem.1628

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