New building blocks with good solubility and optimized optoelectrical property are critical for materials development in organic electronics. Herein, a new head-to-head linkage containing a donor unit, 4,4′-difluoro-3,3′-dialkoxy-2,2′-bithiophene (BTfOR), is synthesized. The dialkoxy chains afford good materials solubility and also planar backbone via noncovalent (thienyl)S⋯(alkoxy)O interactions. Compared to the reported 3,3′-dialkoxy-2,2′-bithiophene (BTOR), F addition leads to BTfOR with lower-lying frontier molecular orbitals and can further promote polymer packing via additional F⋯S or F⋯H interactions. BTfOR can be readily stannylated to afford tin monomer with high purity and excellent reactivity toward Stille polymerization. As a proof of concept for materials design, BTfOR-based homopolymer (PBTfOR) is synthesized, showing high molecular weight and strong aggregation. Moreover, the HOMO (−4.98 eV) of PBTfOR is greatly lower than that (−4.54 eV) of nonfluorinated counterpart PBTOR, which is attributed to the addition of F atoms. When incorporated into thin-film transistors, PBTfOR exhibits a remarkable hole mobility of 0.57 cm2 V−1 s−1, showing an exceptional example of high-mobility head-to-head polythiophene. This study demonstrates that introduction of F atoms can lead to BTfOR with optimized physicochemical properties, and the new BTfOR should find promising use for constructing donor–acceptor copolymers for high-performance electronic devices.
- fluorinated thiophenes
- head-to-head linkages
- noncovalent sulfur⋯oxygen interactions
- organic thin-film transistors
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials