Influence of side chains on electrochromic properties of green donor-acceptor-donor polymers
Journal article, 2011
Three solution processable cathodically coloring green electrochromic polymers, based on 2,3-diphenyl-5,7-di(thiophen-2-yl)thieno[3,4-b]pyrazine, have been synthesized by oxidative FeCl3 polymerization. The polymers were designed with solubilizing alkyl and oligoethylene oxide side chains to achieve solubility and processability. All three polymers have a small electrochemical bandgap (1.8-1.9 eV) and low oxidation potentials. Spectroelectrochemical studies of polymer films on ITO reveal that the alkyl side chains in head-to-head position on the polymer backbone promote a defined high-energy absorption peak and suppress tailing of charge-carrier absorption into the visible region. Kinetic studies, based on transmission measurements applying a square-wave potential between reduced and oxidized states, show that the polymer with exclusively oligoethylene oxide side chains (P3) had the fastest response times, monitored at the low-energy absorption maxima. The best performing polymer (P1) showed a good optical contrast in the visible region with a Delta T of 26% at 700 nm. An initial test of the electrochemical stability showed that the oligoethylene oxide containing polymers had superior stability over 500 full switches.