Dissertations, Theses, and Capstone Projects

Date of Degree


Document Type


Degree Name





Ralf M. Peetz

Committee Members

Qiao-Sheng Hu

Alexander Greer

Subject Categories



Acyclic Diene Metathesis (ADMET), Suzuki Polycondensation (SPC), Polymer, Donor-Acceptor (D-A), Photovoltaics


Conjugated polymers are useful in a wide variety of applications including production of Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs), Field Effect Transistors (FETs) and organic photovoltaics. Our work in the lab focuses on the development of materials for use in Polymer Solar Cells (PSCs) using various electron donating and electron accepting units to individually tune the Highest Occupied Molecular Orbital (HOMO) and Lowest Unoccupied Molecular Orbital (LUMO) respectively and produce a small but controlled band gap. This is accomplished through the synthesis of several precursors and their subsequent polymerization using Acyclic Diene Metathesis (ADMET) and Suzuki Polycondensation (SPC). Moderately strong electron donors, such as phenylene or thiophene compounds, and strong electron acceptors, such as benzothiadiazole and benzoxadiazole, are coupled into donor-acceptor (D-A) moieties in different combinations to tune the band gap. D-A type monomers and polymers are synthesized based on the polymerization technique used. ADMET requires the presence of terminal dienes whereas SPC necessitates the use of halogens and boronic esters. Consequently, the precursors and monomers are developed using different synthetic techniques to produce homologous structures to compare the effects of both polymerizations on the resulting molecular weight and photo-physical properties. This work will cover the synthesis and characterization of several D-A polymers using both polymerization techniques to design low band gap conjugated polymers for application in photovoltaics.

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