Hydrothermal Synthesis of Composition- and Morphology-Tunable Polyimide-Based Microparticles

Taehyung Kim, Byeongho Park, Kyung Min Lee, Se Hun Joo, Min Seok Kang, Won Cheol Yoo, Sang Kyu Kwak, Byeong Su Kim

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17 Citations (Scopus)


Polyimide is one of the most important high-performance polymers, which is widely used due to its excellent mechanical performance and thermal stability. Unlike the conventional synthetic approach, hydrothermal polymerization enables the synthesis of polyimides without any toxic solvent and catalyst. Herein, we report the synthesis of polyimide-based microparticles (PIMs) through one-pot hydrothermal polymerization using precursors of mellitic acid (MA) and three isomers of phenylenediamine (PDA) (o-, m-, and p-PDA). Interestingly, the chemical composition of PIMs was highly tunable with the choice of the PDA isomers, leading to considerable morphological differences between PIMs. The molecular dynamics simulation and density functional theory calculation of the polymeric segment of the respective PIMs suggested that the relative ratio of amide to imide influenced the rotational freedom of the polymeric chains and number of hydrogen bonds, resulting in the well-defined structures of respective PIMs. Considering the highly tunable nature of PIMs coupled with the facile synthetic protocol, we anticipate prospective potentials of PIMs in materials, energy, and composite applications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1480-1485
Number of pages6
JournalACS Macro Letters
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Dec 18

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF-2017R1A2B3012148 and NRF-2016H1D5A1910285), and S.K.K. acknowledges the computational resources from UNIST-HPC.

Publisher Copyright:
Copyright © 2018 American Chemical Society.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Organic Chemistry
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Inorganic Chemistry
  • Materials Chemistry


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