Directed C-H Borylation for the Synthesis of Fused and Ladder Type Conjugated Oligomers and Polymers

  • Daniel Crossley

Student thesis: Phd


The synthesis, photophysical and electronic properties of a series of novel boron containing fused and ladder type donor-acceptor (D-A) oligomers and polymers are reported. The synthesis was achieved through coordination of the basic functionality of the ubiquitous benzothiadiazole acceptor unit onto a boron Lewis acid followed by an electrophilic aromatic borylation resulting in the formation of fused and ladder type structures (termed borylative fusion). The novel C,N-chelated borane structures disclosed herein are a new member of a large family of tetra-coordinate organoboron compounds that are used for the construction of highly emissive materials. Upon borylation large bathochromic shifts in the absorption and fluorescence spectra were observed, DFT and cyclic voltammetry demonstrate that this is a result of a significant reduction of the LUMO energy levels whist the HOMO energy levels remains relatively unperturbed. These large bathochromic shifts lead to materials that show far red/NIR emission in the solid state with absolute quantum yields of up to 44%. Furthermore, the frontier molecular orbital energy levels of these fused structures can be modulated through judicious selection of the exocyclic boron substituents. These novel borocycles also proved stable to a range of cross-coupling conditions which facilitated further modulation of the frontier molecular orbitals and emissive properties. Borylative fusion was also applicable to D-A conjugated polymers, this represents a facile post-polymerisation functionalisation that is an effective method of modulating the photophysical properties of D-A conjugated polymers. Solution processed OLEDs with far red/NIR electroluminescence (EL) were fabricated from these materials. These devices showed good external quantum efficiency values (EQE) for the far red/NIR region of the electromagnetic spectrum (EQE >0.4 % for maximum EL >700 nm).
Date of Award1 Aug 2016
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • The University of Manchester
SupervisorMichael Turner (Supervisor) & Michael Ingleson (Supervisor)


  • Near Infra-red Emission
  • Direct C-H Electrophilic Borylation
  • Polymers
  • Organoboron
  • Donor-Acceptor Compounds
  • Boron
  • OLEDs

Cite this