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Special Issue "Dendrimers and Hyperbranched Polymers"

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A special issue of Polymers (ISSN 2073-4360).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 October 2011)

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. George R. Newkome

Departments of Polymer Science & Chemistry, The University of Akron, Akron, Ohio 44325-4717, USA
Website | E-Mail
Interests: synthetic and structural studies in diverse areas of chemistry, supramolecular, and nanotechnology; dendrimers; metallosuperstructures

Keywords

  • dendrimer
  • dendrons
  • hyperbranched
  • dendritic assembly by click chemistry
  • metallodendrimers
  • carbosilane dendrimers
  • 1 to 2 branched macromolecules
  • 1 to 3 branched macromolecules
  • catalysis via surface-functionalized dendrimers
  • chiral dendritic frameworks

Published Papers (15 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle Degree of Branching in Hyperbranched Poly(glycerol-co-diacid)s Synthesized in Toluene
Polymers 2012, 4(1), 396-407; doi:10.3390/polym4010396
Received: 1 January 2012 / Revised: 28 January 2012 / Accepted: 31 January 2012 / Published: 6 February 2012
Cited by 16 | PDF Full-text (275 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
1H NMR and 13C NMR spectrometry (1-dimensional and 2-dimensional) have been used to assign chemical resonances and determine the degrees of branching for polyesters synthesized by the Lewis acid (dibutyltin(IV)oxide)-catalyzed polycondensation of glycerol with either succinic acid (n (aliphatic chain length)
[...] Read more.
1H NMR and 13C NMR spectrometry (1-dimensional and 2-dimensional) have been used to assign chemical resonances and determine the degrees of branching for polyesters synthesized by the Lewis acid (dibutyltin(IV)oxide)-catalyzed polycondensation of glycerol with either succinic acid (n (aliphatic chain length) = 2), glutaric acid (n = 3) or azelaic acid (n = 7) in quasi-melt solutions with toluene. When 1:1 and 2:1 (diacid:glycerol) molar ratios were used, it was found that the glutaric acid-derived polymers gave the highest degree of polymer branching (31.2%, 85.6%, respectively) after the 24 h reaction period followed by the succinic acid-derived polymers (39.4%, 41.9%, respectively) and the azelaic acid-derived polymers (9.9%, 13.9%, respectively). Reactions performed at reflux for 24 h resulted in a 70.8% and 56.7% decrease in degree of branching for succinic acid and glutaric acid-derived polyesters, respectively. There is no indication that degree of branching is significantly affected by the presence or absence of solvent according to the results obtained in this research. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dendrimers and Hyperbranched Polymers)
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Open AccessArticle Conformational Effects in Non-Stoichiometric Complexes of Two Hyperbranched Molecules with a Linear Polyelectrolyte
Polymers 2012, 4(1), 240-255; doi:10.3390/polym4010240
Received: 9 December 2011 / Revised: 22 December 2011 / Accepted: 14 January 2012 / Published: 17 January 2012
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (1726 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
We report results from Brownian dynamics computer simulations of systems comprised by two terminally charged hyperbranched molecules preferentially branched in the periphery, with an oppositely charged linear chain of varying length. Comparison of the findings from the present study to stoichiometric counterparts and
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We report results from Brownian dynamics computer simulations of systems comprised by two terminally charged hyperbranched molecules preferentially branched in the periphery, with an oppositely charged linear chain of varying length. Comparison of the findings from the present study to stoichiometric counterparts and to analogous dendrimer-based complexes, reveal that the presence of the second hyperbranched molecule incurs significant changes in the conformational characteristics of both components of the complex. Instead of step-like changes in the average size and shape of the hyperbranched component that were noted in the previously studied stoichiometric systems, a rather smooth change is observed upon increase of the length of the linear component. In addition, a markedly different behavior is also noticed in the conformational characteristics of the linear chain when compared to that in similar dendrimer-based systems. The above findings are consistent with the higher degree of deformability of the peripherally branched molecules which allow appropriate rearrangements in shape in order to accommodate the favorable Coulombic interactions between the two components of the complex. This behavior offers new insight towards the design of more efficient hyperbranched-based systems which can take advantage of the multifunctionality and the structural properties of the highly branched polymer components. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dendrimers and Hyperbranched Polymers)
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Open AccessArticle Hydrodynamic Behavior of Dendrigraft Polylysines in Water and Dimethylformamide
Polymers 2012, 4(1), 20-31; doi:10.3390/polym4010020
Received: 2 November 2011 / Revised: 20 December 2011 / Accepted: 23 December 2011 / Published: 2 January 2012
Cited by 8 | PDF Full-text (406 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The four first generations of dendrigraft poly-L-lysine have been studied in dimethylformamide (aprotic solvent) and in 0.2 M NaCl aqueous solutions by isothermal translation diffusion, 1H NMR and viscometry methods. The relationships between diffusion coefficient, intrinsic viscosity and molar mass have been
[...] Read more.
The four first generations of dendrigraft poly-L-lysine have been studied in dimethylformamide (aprotic solvent) and in 0.2 M NaCl aqueous solutions by isothermal translation diffusion, 1H NMR and viscometry methods. The relationships between diffusion coefficient, intrinsic viscosity and molar mass have been determined for dendrigraft poly-L-lysines, and the scaling index values have been compared to classical trifunctional dendrimers. Dendrimers and dendrigraft poly-L-lysines exhibited similitudes in their hydrodynamic behaviors. Nevertheless, dendrigraft poly-L-lysines displayed a specific behavior in solution. In contrast to dendrimers, a significant change of hydrodynamic dimension of dendrigraft poly-L-lysines according to the nature of the solvent has been observed. In aprotic solvent, the dendrigraft poly-L-lysine dimensions are about two times lower than in aqueous media (i.e., the hydrodynamic volume is contracted by a factor 8 in dimethylformamide), revealing the softness of dendrigraft poly-L-lysine compared to classical trifunctional dendrimers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dendrimers and Hyperbranched Polymers)
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Open AccessCommunication Embryonic Stem Cells Maintain an Undifferentiated State on Dendrimer-Immobilized Surface with d-Glucose Display
Polymers 2011, 3(4), 2078-2087; doi:10.3390/polym3042078
Received: 2 November 2011 / Revised: 28 November 2011 / Accepted: 2 December 2011 / Published: 5 December 2011
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (1555 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
In serial passaging cultures of mouse embryonic stem (ES) cells, we employed a dendrimer-immobilized substrate that displayed d-glucose as a terminal ligand. The d-glucose-displaying dendrimer (GLU/D) surface caused the ES cells to form loosely attached spherical colonies, while those on a gelatin-coated surface
[...] Read more.
In serial passaging cultures of mouse embryonic stem (ES) cells, we employed a dendrimer-immobilized substrate that displayed d-glucose as a terminal ligand. The d-glucose-displaying dendrimer (GLU/D) surface caused the ES cells to form loosely attached spherical colonies, while those on a gelatin-coated surface formed flatter colonies that were firmly attached to the surface. Despite the morphological similarities between the colonies on the GLU/D surface and aggregates on a conventional bacteriological dish, immunostaining and RT-PCR analyses revealed the maintenance of cells within the spherical colonies on the GLU/D surface in an undifferentiated state with very low expressions of primitive endoderm markers. On the bacteriological dish, however, the cells within the aggregates showed a different cellular state with partial differentiation into the primitive endoderm lineage, and the expression level increased gradually along with the number of passages. These results indicate that the GLU/D surface can be a potential tool for controlling the ES cell morphology and then govern their self-renewal and fate. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dendrimers and Hyperbranched Polymers)
Open AccessArticle Incorporation of Hyperbranched Supramolecules into Nafion Ionic Domains via Impregnation and In-Situ Photopolymerization
Polymers 2011, 3(4), 2018-2038; doi:10.3390/polym3042018
Received: 1 October 2011 / Revised: 1 November 2011 / Accepted: 18 November 2011 / Published: 28 November 2011
Cited by 8 | PDF Full-text (1091 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Nafion membranes were impregnated with photocurable supramolecules, viz., hyperbranched polyester having pendant functional carboxylic acid groups (HBPEAc-COOH) by swelling in methanol and subsequently photocured in-situ after drying. Structure-property relationships of the HBPEAc-COOH impregnated Nafion membranes were analyzed on the basis of Fourier transform
[...] Read more.
Nafion membranes were impregnated with photocurable supramolecules, viz., hyperbranched polyester having pendant functional carboxylic acid groups (HBPEAc-COOH) by swelling in methanol and subsequently photocured in-situ after drying. Structure-property relationships of the HBPEAc-COOH impregnated Nafion membranes were analyzed on the basis of Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy, solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance (SSNMR) and dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA). FTIR and SSNMR investigations revealed that about 7 wt % of HBPEAc-COOH was actually incorporated into the ionic domains of Nafion. The FTIR study suggests possible complexation via inter-species hydrogen bonding between the carboxylic groups of HBPEAc-COOH and the sulfonate groups of Nafion. The α-relaxation peak corresponding to the glass transition temperature of the ionic domains of the neat Nafion-acid form was found to increase from ~100 to ~130 °C upon impregnation with enhanced modulus afforded by the cured polyester network within the ionic domains. The AC impedance fuel cell measurement of the impregnated membrane exhibited an increasing trend of proton conductivity with increasing temperature, which eventually surpassed that of neat Nafion above 100 °C. Of particular importance is that the present paper is the first to successfully incorporate polymer molecules/networks into the Nafion ionic domains by means of impregnation with hyperbranched supramolecules followed by in-situ photopolymerization. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dendrimers and Hyperbranched Polymers)
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Open AccessArticle NMR Studies and Molecular Dynamic Simulation of Synthetic Dendritic Antigens
Polymers 2011, 3(3), 1533-1553; doi:10.3390/polym3031533
Received: 19 August 2011 / Revised: 30 August 2011 / Accepted: 9 September 2011 / Published: 13 September 2011
Cited by 10 | PDF Full-text (1302 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
A series of synthetic benzylpenicillinoylated dendrimers has been prepared using up to 4th generation PAMAM dendrimers. These nanoconjugates, as nanosized Dendritic Antigens, are useful in the diagnostic evaluation of drug allergy due to specific molecular recognition with the Human Immunological System (IgE). The
[...] Read more.
A series of synthetic benzylpenicillinoylated dendrimers has been prepared using up to 4th generation PAMAM dendrimers. These nanoconjugates, as nanosized Dendritic Antigens, are useful in the diagnostic evaluation of drug allergy due to specific molecular recognition with the Human Immunological System (IgE). The morphology and dimensions of the conjugates coupled to the orientation of the peripheral benzylpenicillin residues in the dendrimers may play key roles in such molecular recognition processes. Herein, the characterization and conformation of these structures are studied by a detailed analysis of 1D (1H and 13C NMR) and 2D NMR (1H,1H-NOESY) spectra. These dendrimers in explicit solvent were studied by the atomistic forcefield-based molecular dynamics. Structural properties such as shape, radius-of-gyration and distribution of the monomers will be discussed in relation to the experimental observations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dendrimers and Hyperbranched Polymers)

Review

Jump to: Research

Open AccessReview Polyester Dendrimers
Polymers 2012, 4(1), 794-879; doi:10.3390/polym4010794
Received: 29 January 2012 / Revised: 1 March 2012 / Accepted: 2 March 2012 / Published: 7 March 2012
Cited by 17 | PDF Full-text (1162 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Polyester dendrimers have been comprehensively reviewed starting from their first synthesis in the early 1990s by Hawker and Fréchet. Polyester dendrimers have attracted and continue to attract extensive interest because they are comparatively easy to make and because, whenever they have been tested,
[...] Read more.
Polyester dendrimers have been comprehensively reviewed starting from their first synthesis in the early 1990s by Hawker and Fréchet. Polyester dendrimers have attracted and continue to attract extensive interest because they are comparatively easy to make and because, whenever they have been tested, they have been found to be non-toxic. A number of different strategies for their synthesis have been examined and the methods employed for formation of the ester bond during dendrimer assembly have been summarized. The newest approaches, including the use of bifunctional orthogonally reacting dendrons and accelerated synthesis have been surveyed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dendrimers and Hyperbranched Polymers)
Open AccessReview Characterizations of Polyamidoamine Dendrimers with Scattering Techniques
Polymers 2012, 4(1), 600-616; doi:10.3390/polym4010600
Received: 20 December 2011 / Revised: 20 January 2012 / Accepted: 10 February 2012 / Published: 21 February 2012
Cited by 10 | PDF Full-text (875 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Dendrimers are highly branched, open, covalent assemblies of branch cells (monomers) radially attached to a core in successive layers or generations. Major types of dendrimers include polyamidoamine, polypropylenimine, multiple antigen peptide, chiral, and Fréchet-type dendrimers. Their structure and dynamics can be explored by
[...] Read more.
Dendrimers are highly branched, open, covalent assemblies of branch cells (monomers) radially attached to a core in successive layers or generations. Major types of dendrimers include polyamidoamine, polypropylenimine, multiple antigen peptide, chiral, and Fréchet-type dendrimers. Their structure and dynamics can be explored by various techniques, such as scattering, spectrometry, and microscopy techniques. Specifically, the scattering techniques include small-angle neutron scattering (SANS), quasi-elastic neutron scattering (QENS), small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS), and light scattering. Examples of their properties that can be explored by scattering techniques include: inter-molecular structure, intra-molecular cavity, radius-of-gyration (RG), hydrodynamic radius (RH), molecular weight, effective charge number of a single dendrimer molecule, water penetration into the interior of the dendrimers, and the internal dynamics. Of these properties, the hydrodynamic radius and molecular weight may be explored by DLS; the internal dynamics of dendrimers may be studied by QENS; and the others may be explored through SAXS and SANS. During the past several years, SANS and QENS have been used to study the structural properties and internal dynamics of various generations of polyamidoamine dendrimers (PAMAMs). Their potential prospects as anticancer polymer drug carriers are also discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dendrimers and Hyperbranched Polymers)
Open AccessReview Synthetic Strategies towards Fullerene-Rich Dendrimer Assemblies
Polymers 2012, 4(1), 501-538; doi:10.3390/polym4010501
Received: 16 December 2011 / Revised: 1 February 2012 / Accepted: 8 February 2012 / Published: 14 February 2012
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (1208 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The sphere-shaped fullerene has attracted considerable interest not least due to the peculiar electronic properties of this carbon allotrope and the fascinating materials emanating from fullerene-derived structures. The rapid development and tremendous advances in organic chemistry allow nowadays the modification of C60
[...] Read more.
The sphere-shaped fullerene has attracted considerable interest not least due to the peculiar electronic properties of this carbon allotrope and the fascinating materials emanating from fullerene-derived structures. The rapid development and tremendous advances in organic chemistry allow nowadays the modification of C60 to a great extent by pure chemical means. It is therefore not surprising that the fullerene moiety has also been part of dendrimers. At the initial stage, fullerenes have been examined at the center of the dendritic structure mainly aimed at possible shielding effects as exerted by the dendritic environment and light-harvesting effects due to multiple chromophores located at the periphery of the dendrimer. In recent years, also many research efforts have been devoted towards fullerene-rich nanohybrids containing multiple C60 units in the branches and/or as surface functional groups. In this review, synthetic efforts towards the construction of dendritic fullerene-rich nanostructures have been compiled and will be summarized herein. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dendrimers and Hyperbranched Polymers)
Open AccessReview Multiscale Modeling for Host-Guest Chemistry of Dendrimers in Solution
Polymers 2012, 4(1), 463-485; doi:10.3390/polym4010463
Received: 15 December 2011 / Revised: 31 January 2012 / Accepted: 6 February 2012 / Published: 10 February 2012
Cited by 9 | PDF Full-text (8858 KB)
Abstract
Dendrimers have been widely used as nanostructured carriers for guest species in a variety of applications in medicine, catalysis, and environmental remediation. Theory and simulation methods are an important complement to experimental approaches that are designed to develop a fundamental understanding about how
[...] Read more.
Dendrimers have been widely used as nanostructured carriers for guest species in a variety of applications in medicine, catalysis, and environmental remediation. Theory and simulation methods are an important complement to experimental approaches that are designed to develop a fundamental understanding about how dendrimers interact with guest molecules. This review focuses on computational studies aimed at providing a better understanding of the relevant physicochemical parameters at play in the binding and release mechanisms between polyamidoamine (PAMAM) dendrimers and guest species. We highlight recent contributions that model supramolecular dendrimer-guest complexes over the temporal and spatial scales spanned by simulation methods ranging from all-atom molecular dynamics to statistical field theory. The role of solvent effects on dendrimer-guest interactions and the importance of relating model parameters across multiple scales is discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dendrimers and Hyperbranched Polymers)
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Open AccessReview Polysilane Dendrimers
Polymers 2012, 4(1), 408-447; doi:10.3390/polym4010408
Received: 15 December 2011 / Revised: 21 January 2012 / Accepted: 29 January 2012 / Published: 9 February 2012
Cited by 18 | PDF Full-text (2568 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The synthesis, structure and electronic properties of polysilane dendrimers, a relatively new class of highly branched and silicon-rich molecular architectures is reviewed. After a detailed discussion of main synthetic strategies to well-defined single-core and double-core polysilane dendrimers, important structural and conformational features determined
[...] Read more.
The synthesis, structure and electronic properties of polysilane dendrimers, a relatively new class of highly branched and silicon-rich molecular architectures is reviewed. After a detailed discussion of main synthetic strategies to well-defined single-core and double-core polysilane dendrimers, important structural and conformational features determined by single crystal X-ray crystallography and 29Si-NMR spectroscopy are presented. The last part highlights the most interesting photochemical properties of polysilane dendrimers such as UV absorption and emission behavior, which are compared with those of linear and branched polysilanes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dendrimers and Hyperbranched Polymers)
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Open AccessReview Dendronization: A Useful Synthetic Strategy to Prepare Multifunctional Materials
Polymers 2012, 4(1), 355-395; doi:10.3390/polym4010355
Received: 31 October 2011 / Revised: 21 January 2012 / Accepted: 29 January 2012 / Published: 2 February 2012
Cited by 41 | PDF Full-text (1893 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Dendronization is a synthetic methodology that offers important advantages. The resulting products, which are called dendronized materials, present new and specific properties. This review shows numerous examples in which individual dendrons are used as building blocks to prepare more complex arrays via covalent
[...] Read more.
Dendronization is a synthetic methodology that offers important advantages. The resulting products, which are called dendronized materials, present new and specific properties. This review shows numerous examples in which individual dendrons are used as building blocks to prepare more complex arrays via covalent or non-covalent interactions. In particular, it points out how the structural information programmed into the dendritic architecture can be used in the dendronization process to generate nanostructures with specific tailored properties. We emphasize the use of different dendrons, with diverse chemical structure and size, to functionalize diverse substrates like linear polymers, and plane and curved inorganic surfaces. Apart from this, the review also demonstrates that self-assembly represents an ideal approach to create well-defined hyperbranched surfaces and it includes some discussion about the ability of both organic and inorganic building blocks to direct this process. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dendrimers and Hyperbranched Polymers)
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Open AccessReview Internal Dynamics of Dendritic Molecules Probed by Pyrene Excimer Formation
Polymers 2012, 4(1), 211-239; doi:10.3390/polym4010211
Received: 5 December 2011 / Revised: 2 January 2012 / Accepted: 12 January 2012 / Published: 17 January 2012
Cited by 33 | PDF Full-text (399 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This review exposes the current poor understanding of the internal segmental chain dynamics of dendrimers in solution probed by monitoring the process of excimer formation between pyrene labels covalently attached to the chain ends of dendrimers. The review begins by covering the bases
[...] Read more.
This review exposes the current poor understanding of the internal segmental chain dynamics of dendrimers in solution probed by monitoring the process of excimer formation between pyrene labels covalently attached to the chain ends of dendrimers. The review begins by covering the bases of fluorescence and the kinetics of pyrene excimer formation before describing a procedure based on the Model Free (MF) analysis that is used to analyze quantitatively the fluorescence decays acquired for dendrimers, the ends of which have been fully and covalently labeled with pyrene. Comparison of the various trends obtained by different research groups describing the efficiency of pyrene excimer formation with the generation number of dendrimers illustrates the lack of consensus between the few studies devoted to the topic. One possible reason for this disagreement might reside in the presence of minute amounts of unattached pyrene labels which act as potent fluorescent impurities and affect the analysis of the fluorescence spectra and decays in an uncontrolled manner. The review points out that the MF analysis of the fluorescence decays acquired with pyrene-labeled dendrimers enables one to account for the presence of unattached pyrene and to retrieve information about the internal segmental dynamics of the dendrimer. It provides guidelines that should enable future studies on pyrene-labeled dendrimers to yield results that are more straightforward to interpret. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dendrimers and Hyperbranched Polymers)
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Open AccessReview Phase Diagrams for Systems Containing Hyperbranched Polymers
Polymers 2012, 4(1), 72-115; doi:10.3390/polym4010072
Received: 2 November 2011 / Revised: 15 December 2011 / Accepted: 4 January 2012 / Published: 9 January 2012
Cited by 21 | PDF Full-text (741 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Hyperbranched polymers show an outstanding potential for applications ranging from chemistry over nanotechnology to pharmacy. In order to take advantage of this potential, the underlying phase behaviour must be known. From the thermodynamic point of view, the modelling of these phase diagrams is
[...] Read more.
Hyperbranched polymers show an outstanding potential for applications ranging from chemistry over nanotechnology to pharmacy. In order to take advantage of this potential, the underlying phase behaviour must be known. From the thermodynamic point of view, the modelling of these phase diagrams is quite challenging, because the thermodynamic properties depend on the architecture of the hyperbranched polymer as well as on the number and kind of present functional end groups. The influence of architecture can be taken into account via the lattice cluster theory (LCT) as an extension of the well-known Flory–Huggins theory. Whereas the Flory–Huggins theory is limited to linear polymer chains, the LCT can be applied to an arbitrary chain architecture. The number and the kind of functional groups can be handled via the Wertheim perturbation theory, applicable for directed forces between the functional groups and the surrounding solvent molecules. The combination of the LCT and the Wertheim theory can be established for the modelling or even prediction of the liquid-liquid equilibria (LLE) of polymer solutions in a single solvent or in a solvent mixture or polymer blends, where the polymer can have an arbitrary structure. The applied theory predicts large demixing regions for mixtures of linear polymers and hyperbranched polymers, as well as for mixtures made from two hyperbranched polymers. The introduction of empty lattice sites permits the theoretical investigation of pressure effects on phase behaviour. The calculated phase diagrams were compared with own experimental data or to experimental data taken from literature. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dendrimers and Hyperbranched Polymers)
Open AccessReview Mechanisms of Light Energy Harvesting in Dendrimers and Hyperbranched Polymers
Polymers 2011, 3(4), 2053-2077; doi:10.3390/polym3042053
Received: 24 October 2011 / Revised: 18 November 2011 / Accepted: 2 December 2011 / Published: 5 December 2011
Cited by 16 | PDF Full-text (764 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Since their earliest synthesis, much interest has arisen in the use of dendritic and structurally allied forms of polymer for light energy harvesting, especially as organic adjuncts for solar energy devices. With the facility to accommodate a proliferation of antenna chromophores, such materials
[...] Read more.
Since their earliest synthesis, much interest has arisen in the use of dendritic and structurally allied forms of polymer for light energy harvesting, especially as organic adjuncts for solar energy devices. With the facility to accommodate a proliferation of antenna chromophores, such materials can capture and channel light energy with a high degree of efficiency, each polymer unit potentially delivering the energy of one photon—or more, when optical nonlinearity is involved. To ensure the highest efficiency of operation, it is essential to understand the processes responsible for photon capture and channelling of the resulting electronic excitation. Highlighting the latest theoretical advances, this paper reviews the principal mechanisms, which prove to involve a complex interplay of structural, spectroscopic and electrodynamic properties. Designing materials with the capacity to capture and control light energy facilitates applications that now extend from solar energy to medical photonics. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dendrimers and Hyperbranched Polymers)
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