The START program "Chiral Polysilanes" focuses on the development of an asymmetric chemistry of silicon based on the use of silyl anions as key intermediates. As for other molecular units which may serve as conductors or switches, it is also essential to control the molecular geometries for polysilanes. The spatial arrangement of the groups attached to the silicon atoms in the chain is responsible for the optical and electronic properties of the material.
Most of the established methods for obtaining stereo-control in the build-up of molecular frameworks, which were developed in organic chemistry, can not be used in organosilicon chemistry due to the limited ability of silicon to form double bonds with itself or other elements. Therefore, an alternative approach was conceived in the START program. It focusses on the investigation of a stereo-chemical phenomenon of silyl anions that was postulated and also theoretically investigated to a certain degree, but experimentally only sparsely addressed. This property is that of configurational stability. Since silylanions are central intermediates in the synthesis of polysilanes, the studies of their general and especially their stereo-chemical properties are of utmost importance for the design of a controlled formation of spatially defined polymers. not assigned GG: START-Projekt