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Handbook of Conducting Polymers - Theory, Synthesis, Properties and Characterization - 3rd Edition Edited by Terje A. Skotheim and John R. Reynolds.
The field of conjugated, electrically conducting, and electroactive polymers continues to grow. Since the publication of the second edition of the Handbook of Conducting Polymers in 1998,
we have witnessed broad advances with significant developments in both fundamental understanding and applications, some of which are already reaching the marketplace.
It was particularly rewarding to see that in 2000, the Nobel Prize in chemistry was awarded to Alan Heeger, Alan MacDiarmid, and Hideki Shirakawa, recognizing their pathbreaking discovery of high conductivity in polyacetylene in 1977.
This capstone to the field was celebrated by all of us as the entire community has participated in turning their initial discovery into the important field that it now is, almost 30 years later.
The vast portfolio of new polymer structures with unique and tailored properties and the wide range of applications being pursued are far beyond what we could have envisioned when the field was in its infancy.
It was developments in polymer synthesis that led to free-standing polyacetylene films and the discovery of conductivity in polymers.
The synthesis of p-conjugated chains is central to the science and technology of conducting polymers and is featured in this edition.
Examining the synthetic advances across the board, one is struck by refined and careful syntheses that have yielded polymers with well-controlled and wellunderstood structures.
Among other things, it has led to materials that are highly processable using industrially relevant techniques.
In aspects of processing, spin coating, layer-by-layer assembly, fiber spinning, and the application of printing technology have all had a big impact during the last 10 years.
Throughout the Conducting Polymers Handbook, we notice that structure–property relationships are now understood and have been developed for many of the polymers.
These properties span the redox, interfacial, electrical, and optical phenomena that are unique to this class of materials.
During the last 10 years, we have witnessed fascinating developments of a wide range of commercial applications, in particular, in optoelectronic devices.
Importantly, a number of polymers and compositions have been made available by the producers for product development.
This has helped to drive the applications developments to marketable products. While conductivity, nonlinear optics, and light emission continue to be important properties for investigation and have undergone significant developments as discussed throughout the Conducting Polymers Handbook,
the advances in semiconducting electronics, memory materials, photovoltaics (solar cells), and applications directed to biomedicine are emerging as future growth areas. As we have assembled this edition, it has become clear that the field has reached a new level of maturity.
Nevertheless, with the vast repertoire of synthetic chemistry at our disposal to create new structures with new, and perhaps unpredictable properties, we can expect exciting discoveries to continue in this dynamic field.
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