Development of new luminogenic materials with aggregation-induced emission
characteristics (AIE) and exploration of their high-tech applications as well as elucidation of
the underlying mechanism and structure/property relationships have been our constant pursuit
since the first discovery of the AIE effect in 2001. Attracted by the splendid property and
fascinating perspectives of the AIE materials and coupled with our expertises in polymer
chemistry, I have launched a program directed towards the development of new polymeric
materials with AIE characteristics with different topological structures and functionalities.
The four main objectives of this thesis are: 1) design and synthesis functional AIE-active
materials; 2) study the structures and properties of the new materials; 3) explore the practical
applications of the new AIE materials; and 4) reveal mechanistic understanding of the AIE or
A series of AIE/AEE-active tetraphenylethene (TPE)-based molecules and linear,
hyperbranched, and crosslinked polymers with various functionalities are designed and
synthesized. Modern organic reactions such as Suzuki coupling reaction, Witting reaction,
Heck reaction, Sonogashira coupling reaction, McMurry coupling, Hay-Glaser coupling,
Diels-Alder reaction, cyclotrimerization, etc, are used to construct the AIE-active materials.
The structures and properties of the luminogenic materials are carefully characterized and
evaluated by standard spectroscopic techniques such as IR, NMR, MALDI-TOF MS, GPC,
TGA, DSC, UV, PL, TPEF, CD, CPL, RI, CV, XRD, XPS, SEM, TEM, VSM, fluorescent
microscope, zeta-potential as well as DFT theoretical calculation. The design of monomer
structure, optimization of polymerization conditions, structural characterization of the
resultant polymers, investigation of their solubility, thermal stability, photophysical property,
redox activity, nonlinear optical property, light refractivity, chiroptical property, etc, and
exploration of their high-tech applications as fluorescent photopatterning materials, precursors
for magnetic ceramics, fluorescent chemosensors for explosive detection, fluorescent
visualizers for intracellular cell imaging, etc, constitute the major contents for each project.
On the other hand, a series of AIE-active BODIPY and hexaphenylbenzene derivatives with
subtle structural variations are also designed and synthesized for mechanistic understanding
of the AIE phenomenon at the molecular level.
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