Beyond Diels-Alder: Domino reactions in furan-maleimide click networks

Paul van den Tempel, Emiel O. van der Boon, Jozef G.M. Winkelman, Antonina V. Krasnikova, Daniele Parisi, Peter J. Deuss, Francesco Picchioni*, Ranjita K. Bose*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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The furan-maleimide Diels-Alder chemistry has emerged as an important tool to design thermo-reversible click networks. This not only preserves the strong and robust properties of thermo-sets and rubbers, but also makes it possible to cleave crosslinks at non-degradative temperatures, or in other words to recycle them. In this work a new reaction is reported in furan-maleimide click networks, which is the Double-Diels-Alder reaction (DDA), also known as domino Diels-Alder. This forms extra linkages between Diels-Alder adducts and non-reacted furan groups and evidently leads to stronger materials, but also prevents efficient thermal (re)cycling. This work shows with nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) characterization, differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and rheology that the DDA reaction can occur both in intramolecular and intermolecular fashion, but also that it exhibits reversibility just like the regular Diels-Alder reaction. This reaction can be easily overlooked creating what at first sight might be inexplicable reactivity when analyzing the properties of furan-maleimide click networks.

Original languageEnglish
Article number125884
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 2-May-2023


  • Click networks
  • Diels-Alder
  • Domino adducts
  • Reversibility

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