Characterization and Carbonization of Highly-Oriented Poly(diiododiacetylene) Nanofibers

Liang Luo,1 Christopher Wilhelm,1 Christopher N. Young,2 Clare P. Grey,1 Gary P. Halada,2 Kai Xiao,3 Ilia N. Ivanov,3 Jane Y. Howe,4 David B. Geohegan,3 and Nancy S. Goroff1

1-Department of Chemistry, State University of New York, Stony Brook, NY 11794
2-Department of Material Science and Engineering, State University of New York, Stony Brook, NY 11794
3-Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, TN, 37831
4-Materials Sciences and Technology Division, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, TN, 37831


Nanofibers (10-50 nm in diameter) of poly(diiododiacetylene) (PIDA) were synthesized by topochemical polymerization of diiodobutadiyne within host guest cocrystals. PIDA is a novel conjugated polymer with an all-carbon backbone which was shown to align within the nanofibers using polarized Raman spectroscopy. The PIDA nanofibers were stable at room temperature, but could be easily induced to irreversibly convert to sp2–hybridized carbon by a variety of processing treatments, including irradiation with a 532-nm laser beam. The mechanism of the transformation was found to be the release of iodine, which permits cross-linking between individual polymer chains within the nanofibers, transforming them to sp2–hybridized carbon.


One dimensional carbon nanomaterials are of broad interest for applications in batteries, fuel cells, hydrogen storage, and nanoscale electronics, however synthesizing them under mild conditions remains a challenge. Common synthesis techniques require require transition metal catalysis and/or high temperature processing. This work describes a new low-energy pathway for the synthesis of one-dimensional carbonized nanofibers through the alignment of precursor polymers with iodine atoms which can be easily released to permit cross-linking of the individual polymer chains within the fiber.


This work was web published in Macromolecules March 25, 2011. Research was sponsored by the National Science Foundation (CHE-9984937, CHE-0446749, CHE-0453334, and DMR0804737). A portion of this research was conducted as a user project at the Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences, which is sponsored at Oak Ridge National Laboratory by the Office of Basic Energy Sciences, U.S. Department of Energy.

Citation for Highlight
L. Luo, C. Wilhelm, C. N. Young, C. P. Grey, G. P. Halada, K. Xiao, I. N. Ivanov, D. B. Geohegan, and N. S. Goroff, Characterization and Carbonization of Highly Oriented Poly(diiododiacetylene) Nanofibers, Macromolecules (web published March 25, 2011, DOI: 10.1021/ma102324r).