Effect of phenol and derivatives on atom transfer radical polymerization in the presence of air

Gnanou Y., Hizal G.

JOURNAL OF POLYMER SCIENCE PART A-POLYMER CHEMISTRY, vol.42, no.2, pp.351-359, 2004 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier


The various phenolic compounds in conjunction with Cu(II) or Cu(l)N,N,N',N')V'-pentamethyl diethylenetriamine (PMDETA) complexes are used to initiate atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) of methyl methacrylate, styrene, and methyl acrylate in the presence of a limited amount of air at temperatures in the range of 80-110 degreesC. Meanwhile, an effort is directed toward the elucidation of the role of phenol and derivatives in ATRP catalyzed by Cu(II)/PMDETA. The catalytic sequence involves the formation of Cu(I) by electron transfer from phenol to Cu(II); Cu(I) so formed can then react in two distinctly different ways: with organic halide to form a propagating radical or with oxygen to form copper salt in its higher oxidation state; and regeneration of Cu(I) by excess phenol. Such regeneration of Cu(I) would be expected to lead to polymerization as a result of the consumption of oxygen and phenol as well. The phenols with electron releasing groups tended to increase the conversion of the polymerization. In this respect, sodium phenoxide, a more effective additive was found, whereas p-nitro phenol was the least effective. The obtained polymers displayed the common features of a controlled polymerization such as molecular weight control and low polydispersity index value (M-w/M-n < 1.5). (C) 2003 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Polym Sci Part A: Polym Chem 42: 351-359, 2004