A series of bimetallic Salen aluminum (III) complexes with different steric substituents were synthesized. These complexes were used as catalysts to produce polylactide in the ring-opening polymerization of racemic lactide. A kinetic research of polymerization demonstrated that the
steric substituents on the phenolate ring of the complexes had remarkable influence on the stereoselectivity and the polymerization activity. The highest stereoselectivity was obtained with bulky substituent on the ortho position of the salicylidene moieties. Kinetic studies using all these
complexes indicated that the polymerizations were first-ordered with respect to lactide monomers. All these complexes gave highly isotactic polylactides with controlled molecular weight and narrow molecular weight distributions.
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Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: 27 May 2015
This article was made available online on 31 January 2015 as a Fast Track article with title: "Highly Stereoselective Polymerization of Racemic Lactide by Bimetallic Schiff Base Complexes".