Synthesis and Characterization of Cyclopentadienyl Dicarbonyldiphenylphosphinopropyliron for Migratory Insertion Polymerization
Metal-containing polymers (MCPs) are emerging as a class of interesting materials with promising properties and functions. Although many techniques are available for their synthesis, the range of main-chain MCPs available for material applications is limited. Most well-defined main-chain MCP syntheses rely only on the ring-opening polymerization (ROP) of metallocene monomers, thereby new synthetic approaches for novel MCPs are in high demand. In this study a new polymerization technique, migratory insertion polymerization (MIP), was explored and used to produce novel types of MCPs with asymmetric iron repeat-units connected by phosphine-iron (Ph2P-Fe) and iron-acyl (Fe-CO) bonds in the backbone. This research work involved the synthesis, characterization and polymerization of cyclopentadienyl(dicarbonyl)(diphenylphosphinopropyl)iron (FpP). FpP consists of an Fp functional group capable of undergoing a migratory insertion reaction (MIR) and a phosphine group to assist the MIR. FpP was prepared via the reaction between cyclopentadienyl dicarbonyl iron metalate (Fp anion) and (3-chloropropyl)diphenylphosphine, and was characterized using Fourier transform infrared (FTIR), 1H NMR, 31P NMR, 13C NMR, and ultraviolet-visible (UV-Vis) spectroscopies. The molecules undergo intramolecular cyclization reactions at low concentrations in organic solvents, while polymerization occurs in bulk at 70°C, leading to polymers with number-average molecular weights (Mn) up to 12,000 g/mol and narrow molecular weight distributions (PDI=1.08-1.33). These polymers are soluble in a wide range of organic solvents and have a Tg of 100°C.