In situ STM investigation of aromatic poly(azomethine) arrays constructed by "on-site" equilibrium polymerization

Ryota Tanoue, Rintaro Higuchi, Kiryu Ikebe, Shinobu Uemura, Nobuo Kimizuka, Adam Z. Stieg, James K. Gimzewski, Masashi Kunitake

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)


Two-dimensional (2D) arrays of π-conjugated aromatic polymers produced by surface-selective Schiff base coupling reactions between an aromatic diamine and an aromatic dialdehyde were investigated in detail using in situ scanning tunneling microscopy. Surface-selective coupling was achieved for almost all diamine/dialdehyde combinations attempted, although several combinations did not proceed even in homogeneous aqueous alkaline solution. Most of the combinations of an aromatic diamine and a dialdehyde, except the combinations of 4,4′-azodianiline with mono/bithiophenedicarboxaldehyde, formed highly ordered π-conjugated polymer arrays on an iodine-modified Au(111) surface in aqueous solution at a suitable pH. The simplest polymer of the various combinations tested, obtained from the combination of 1,4-diaminobenzene with terephthaldicarboxaldehyde, gave a 2D array consisting of linearly connected benzene units. Poly(azomethine) adlayers caused a positive shift in the electrochemical potential of the butterfly shaped oxidative adsorption and reductive desorption of iodine. The acceleration of the reductive desorption of iodine suggests the existence of a weak interaction between the polymer layer and iodine. Not only the first polymer adlayers but also partially adsorbed secondary adlayers with "on-top" epitaxial behavior were frequently observed for all polymer systems. The alignment of the polymer chains in the adlayers possessed a certain regularity in terms of a regular interval between polymer chains because of repulsive interpolymer interactions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13844-13851
Number of pages8
Issue number39
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2 2012

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Spectroscopy
  • Electrochemistry

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