Optical rotation kinetics study of the polycondensation of chiral sol-gel precursors


We show that the polycondensation of chiral sol-gel precursors can be efficiently followed up by optical rotation measurements. Three silanes were studied, namely, the hexaethoxysilane derivatives of l-threonine, l-isoleucine, and dimethyl-l-tartrate. Two main sol-gel polycondensation mechanisms were identified, namely, linear kinetics product growth and second-order cluster–cluster growth. Dynamic light scattering measurements are used to support the proposed mechanisms.


  • The polycondensation of chiral sol-gel precursors is efficiently followed up by optical rotation.

  • The chiral hexaethoxysilanes of L-threonine, L-isoleucine and dimethyl-L-tartrate, are studied.

  • Two sol-gel mechanisms were identified: linear-kinetics and second-order cluster-cluster growth.

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We thank Prof. Edit Tshuva and Prof. Raed Abu-Reziq for fruitful discussions.

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Correspondence to Dmitri Gelman or David Avnir.

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Cohen, O., Gelman, D. & Avnir, D. Optical rotation kinetics study of the polycondensation of chiral sol-gel precursors. J Sol-Gel Sci Technol 90, 149–154 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10971-018-4858-9

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  • Chiral sol-gels
  • Optical rotation
  • Kinetics
  • Sol-gel precursors