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Controlled Cationic Polymerization of 1‐Methoxy‐1,3‐Butadiene: Long‐Lived Species‐Mediated Reaction and Control over Microstructure with Weak Lewis Bases

Togo, Yukinori, Kanazawa, Arihiro, Kanaoka, Shokyoku, Aoshima, Sadahito
Journal of polymer science 2019 v.57 no.3 pp. 288-296
Lewis acids, Lewis bases, catalysts, crosslinking, hydrochloric acid, microstructure, molecular weight, polymerization, polymers, tetrahydrofuran
Controlled cationic polymerization of trans‐1‐methoxy‐1,3‐butadiene was achieved through the design of appropriate initiating systems, yielding soluble polymers with controllable molecular weights. The combined use of SnCl₄ or GaCl₃ as a Lewis acid catalyst and a weak Lewis base in conjunction with HCl as a protonogen resulted in efficient and controlled polymerization. The Mₙ values of the product polymers increased linearly along the theoretical line, which indicates that intermolecular crosslinking reactions negligibly occurred. In addition, the polymer microstructure was critically dependent on the weak Lewis base employed. In particular, the use of tetrahydrofuran as an additive resulted in the highest 4,1/4,3‐structure ratio (96/4). Weak Lewis bases also affected the polymerization rates but exhibited unique trends that differed from their effects on the cationic polymerization of alkyl vinyl ethers. © 2018 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J. Polym. Sci., Part A: Polym. Chem. 2019, 57, 288–296