Modification of Carbon Fibre Surfaces by Sulfur-Fluoride Exchange Click Chemistry Academic Article uri icon


  • Technologies that enable surface modification are in high demand and are critical for the implementation of new functional materials and devices. Here, we describe the first modification of a carbon surface (in this case carbon fiber) using the sulfur-fluoride exchange (SuFEx) reaction. The parent sulfur (VI) fluoride moiety can be installed directly to the surface via electrochemical deposition of the fluorosulfate phenyldiazonium tetrafluoroborate salt, or by 'SuFExing' a phenol on the carbon surface followed by treatment of the material with SO2 F2 ; similar to a 'graft to' or 'graft from' functionalization approach. We demonstrate that these SuFEx-able surfaces readily undergo exchange with aryl silyl ethers, and that the subsequent sulfate linkages are themselves stable under electrochemical redox conditions. Finally, we showcase the utility of the SuFEx chemistry by installing a pendant amino group to the fiber surface resulting in interfacial shear strength improvements of up to 130 % in epoxy resin.

publication date

  • 2018