Supramolecules with a polymeric structure are called supramolecular polymers. When the polymer includes metal species, it is called a metallo-supramolecular polymer. Unlike conventional organic polymers, metallo-supramolecular polymers change the polymer length in solution because the formation and decomposition of coordinate covalent bonds are reversible based on the equilibrium reactions. The polymers are expected to have unique electronic and optical properties due to the electronic interaction between the metal species and the ligands in the polymer. The redox activity of the metal ions in the polymer film can be caused by an applied electrochemical potential. Since changes in the oxidation state of the metal ions vary the band structure of the metal complex in the polymer, the electronic and optical properties of the polymers are expected to be controlled electrochemically. This chapter introduces the new kind of polymers. A basic understanding of conventional organic polymers is required before the introduction of metallo-supramolecular polymers. Therefore, Sect. 1.1 of this chapter shows scope of this book, and Sects. 1.2–1.5 describe history of polymer and various organic polymers with linear, hyperbranched, dendritic, ladder, networking, and π-conjugated structures. Sections 1.6–1.9 present the fundamental characteristics of metallo-supramolecular polymers in comparison with conventional organic polymers.
KeywordsMetallo-Supramolecular polymer Polymerization Complexation Ligand Metal ion Redox
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