A trio of hot papers

Electrochemical sensing by surface-immobilized poly(ferrocenylsilane) graftsElectrochemical sensing by surface-immobilized poly(ferrocenylsilane) grafts
Xiaofeng Sui ,  Xueling Feng ,  Jing Song ,  Mark A. Hempenius and G. Julius Vancso
J. Mater. Chem., 2012,22, 11261-11267

Poly(ferrocenylsilane) based materials have useful redox characteristics that make them suitable for the electrochemical detection of biological analytes; however, only a few accounts of covalently surface-tethered poly(ferrocenylsilane) films have been reported in the literature. In this hot paper chemically modified electrodes, decorated with covalently tethered poly(ferrocenylsilane) chains are fabricated. Led by G. Julius Vancso the team employed a “grafting to” approach for the covalent attachment of PFS chains to an electrode surface using amine alkylation reactions. Using this technique the team fabricated an ascorbic acid electrochemical sensor which showed high sensitivity and a stable response.

Incorporation of fused tetrathiafulvalene units in a DPP–terthiophene copolymer for air stable solution processable organic field effect transistors Incorporation of fused tetrathiafulvalene units in a DPP–terthiophene copolymer for air stable solution processable organic field effect transistors
Diego Cortizo-Lacalle ,  Sasikumar Arumugam ,  Saadeldin E. T. Elmasly ,  Alexander L. Kanibolotsky ,  Neil J. Findlay ,  Anto Regis Inigo and Peter J. Skabara
J. Mater. Chem., 2012, 22, 11310-11315

In this hot paper a team led by Anto Regis Inigo & Peter J. Skabara report the synthesis and properties of a new polymer p(DPP-TTF) featuring a fused thieno-TTF unit that has been copolymerised with a dithieno-DPP derivative. Bottom gate/bottom contact field effect transistors were fabricated from films of p(DPP-TTF). The transistors showed excellent air-stability which the team attribute to the incorporation of the TTF unit into the polymer.

Frozen polymerization for aligned porous structures with enhanced mechanical stability, conductivity, and as stationary phase for HPLCFrozen polymerization for aligned porous structures with enhanced mechanical stability, conductivity, and as stationary phase for HPLC
Michael Barrow ,  Ali Eltmimi ,  Adham Ahmed ,  Peter Myers and Haifei Zhang
J. Mater. Chem., 2012,22, 11615-11620

Ice templating is a simple and versatile route to prepare a wide range of porous materials. In general, a solution or colloidal suspension is frozen prior to the removal of ice crystals by freeze drying– which leaves a porous structures; however, the structures produced are often fragile and mechanically weak. In this hot paper a directional freezing and frozen polymerization method is developed to prepare crosslinked aligned porous polymers with improved mechanical stability. In the process monomer solutions are directionally frozen in liquid nitrogen to orientate the growth of solvent crystals after which the frozen samples are polymerized by UV irradiation. Removal of the solvent under vacuum produces the aligned porous structure. The team behind the research say the mechanical stability is improved by two orders of magnitude compared to similar materials produced using a freeze-dried process. The team also showed the resulting materials can be modified with graphene and a conducting polymer.

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