Researchers at Northwestern University, USA, and KAIST, South Korea, looked at the properties of a synthetic, cylindrical macrocycle composed of five hydroquinone rings linked through its para positions by methylene bridges. They modified one such monofunctionalised pillararene by adding a viologen side-chain and watched its self-complexation in dilute dichloromethane.
At low concentration, supramolecular daisy-chain polymers form, but these become gels at higher concentration. The team is currently investigating the switching behavior of this material.
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