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Sample records for all-conjugated diblock copolymers

  1. Optoelectronic properties and charge transfer in donor-acceptor all-conjugated diblock copolymers.

    SciTech Connect

    Botiz, I.; Schaller, R. D.; Verduzco, R.; Darling, S. B.

    2011-05-12

    All-conjugated block copolymers, which can self-assemble into well-ordered morphologies, provide exciting opportunities to rationally design and control the nanoscale organization of electron-donor and electron-acceptor moieties in optoelectronic active layers. Here we report on the steady-state and time-resolved optical characterization of block copolymer films and solutions containing poly(3-hexylthiophene) as the donor block and poly(9,9-dioctylfluorene) with and without copolymerization with benzothiadiazole as the acceptor block. Transient absorption measurements suggest rapid charge transfer occurs in both systems, with higher efficiency observed in the latter composition. These results indicate that this class of materials has promise in preparing highly ordered bulk heterojunction all-polymer organic photovoltaic devices.

  2. Face-on and Edge-on Orientation Transition and Self-epitaxial Crystallization of All-conjugated Diblock Copolymer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Hua; Han, Yanchun

    The orientation transition and self-epitaxial crystallization of all-conjugated diblock copolymers poly(p-phenylene)-block-(3-hexylthiophene) (PPP- b-P3HT, BmTn) were systematically investigated by in-situ temperature-resolved two-dimensional grazing incidence X-ray diffraction (2D GIXD) in step-by-step heating and cooling process. B39T18 was selected, the results of 2D GIXD showed that the PPP block crystal adopted a face-on orientation while the crystallization of P3HT block was hindered in as-casted films. Three different molecular orientations transition were obtained in self-epitaxial crystallization circles. First, P3HT crystallize with edge-on during the heating process and induced the PPP blocks crystallized with edge-on during the cooling process. Then, the as-casted film was heated in the melting temperature region of PPP blocks and isothermally crystallized. The partial melting of PPP blocks promoted the P3HT blocks crystallize in a face-on due to the steric limitation effect, PPP blocks crystallized with a face-on via the self-epitaxy during cooling. Furthermore, the face-on transformed to thermodynamically stable edge-on in the melt annealing process. The financial support from the National Basic Research Program of China (973 Program, 2012CB821500) is gratefully acknowledged.

  3. Phase behaviors of cyclic diblock copolymers.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Guojie; Fan, Zhongyong; Yang, Yuliang; Qiu, Feng

    2011-11-01

    A spectral method of self-consistent field theory has been applied to AB cyclic block copolymers. Phase behaviors of cyclic diblock copolymers, such as order-disorder transition, order-order transition, and domain spacing size, have been studied, showing good consistency with previous experimental and theoretical results. Compared to linear diblocks, cyclic diblocks are harder to phase separate due to the topological constraint of the ring structure. A direct disorder-to-cylinder transition window is observed in the phase diagram, which is significantly different from the mean field phase diagram of linear diblock copolymers. The domain spacing size ratio between cyclic and linear diblock copolymers is typically close to 0.707, indicating in segregation that the cyclic polymer can be considered to be made up of linear diblocks with half of the original chain length. PMID:22070321

  4. Polythiophene-block-Polyfluorene and Polythiophene-block-Poly(fluorene-co-benzothiadiazole): insights into the self-assembly of all-conjugated block copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    Verduzco, Rafael; Botiz, Ioan; Dimasi, Elaine; Pickel, Deanna L; Hong, Kunlun; Kilbey, II, S Michael; Darling, Seth B.

    2011-01-01

    Block copolymers made by covalently linking two or more conjugated polymers have significant potential for organic optoelectronic applications, particularly those requiring a p/n junction. Herein, we report the structure of all-conjugated diblock copolymers poly(3-hexylthiophene)-block-poly(9,9-dioctylfluorene) and poly(3-hexylthiophene)-block-poly(9,9-dioctylfluorene-co-benzothiadiazole) in thin films and in the bulk. The diblock copolymers are prepared using a combination of Grignard metathesis polymerization and Suzuki polycondensation and purified using solvent extraction and column chromatography. 1H NMR, SEC, and UV/Visible absorbance measurements are used to characterize the materials and quantify the amount of homopolymer impurities. Thin films and bulk structure are characterized using a combination of differential scanning calorimetry, x-ray diffraction, small-angle x-ray scattering, and atomic force microscopy. Atomic force microscopy images reveal nanoscale lamellar domains in solvent-annealed diblock copolymer thin films, and peaks in x-ray diffraction data correspond to poly(3-hexylthiophene) crystallites. On cooling from temperatures above the crystallization temperature to below the crystallization temperature, two peaks appear in temperature-dependent small-angle x-ray scattering traces - one associated with poly(3-hexylthiophene) crystallites and a second low-angle peak indicative of a self-assembled nanostructured. These measurements show all-conjugated diblock copolymers self-assemble into nanoscale crystalline domains present throughout the bulk samples which may be useful for improving the performance of organic photovoltaics and organic light-emitting diodes.

  5. Dynamic Processes in Diblock Copolymer Micelles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Robertson, Megan; Singh, Avantika

    2013-03-01

    Diblock copolymers, which form micelle structures in selective solvents, offer advantages of robustness and tunability of micelle characteristics as compared to small molecule surfactants. Diblock copolymer micelles in water have been a subject of great interest in drug delivery applications based on their high loading capacity and targeted drug delivery. The aim of this work is to understand the dynamic processes which underlie the self-assembly of diblock copolymer micelle systems which have a semi-crystalline core. Due to the large size of the molecules, the self-assembly of block copolymer micelles occurs on significantly longer time scales than small molecule analogues. The present work focuses on amphiphilic diblock copolymers containing blocks of poly(ethylene oxide) (a hydrophilic polymer) and polycaprolactone (a hydrophobic, semi-crystalline polymer), which spontaneously self-assemble into spherical micelles in water. A variety of experimental techniques are used to probe the kinetic processes relevant to micelle self-assembly, including time-resolved neutron scattering, dynamic light scattering, pulsed field gradient nuclear magnetic resonance, and fluorescence resonance energy transfer experiments.

  6. Morphologies of poly(cyclohexadiene) diblock copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    Kumar, Rajeev; Mays, Jimmy; Sides, Scott; Goswami, Monojoy; Sumpter, Bobby G; Hong, Kunlun; Avgeropoulos, Apostolos; Russell, Thomas P; Gido, Samuel; Tsoukatos, Thodoris; Beyer, Fredrick

    2012-01-01

    Concerted experimental and theoretical investigations have been carried out to understand the micro-phase separation in diblock copolymer melts containing poly (1,3-cyclohexadiene), PCHD, as one of the constituents. In particular, we have studied diblock copolymer melts containing polystyrene (PS), polybutadiene (PB), and polyisoprene (PI) as the second block. We have systematically varied the ratio of 1,2- /1,4-microstructures of poly (1,3-cyclohexadiene) to tune the conformational asymmetry between the two blocks and characterized the effects of these changes on the morphologies using transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS). Our experimental investigations reveal that the melts of PCHD-b-PB, PCHD-b-PS and PCHD-b-PI containing nearly equal fractions of each component and high percentage of 1,4-microstructures in the PCHD block form cylindrical rather than lamellar morphologies as expected in symmetric diblock copolymers. In contrast, the morphologies of PCHD-b-PB, PCHD-b-PS and PCHD-b-PI containing PCHD block with higher 1,2-microstructure are found to be disordered at 110 C. The change in the morphological behavior is in good agreement with our numerical calculations using the random phase approximation and self-consistent field theory for conformationally asymmetric diblock copolymer melts. Also, the effects of composition fluctuations are studied by extending the Brazovskii-Leibler-Fredrickson-Helfand (J. Chem. Phys. 87, 697 (1987)) theory to conformationally asymmetric diblock copolymer melts. These results allow the understanding of the underlying self-assembly process that highlights the importance of the conformational asymmetry in tuning the morphologies in block copolymers.

  7. Molecular origin of photovoltaic performance in donor-block-acceptor all-conjugated block copolymers

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Smith, Kendall A.; Lin, Yen -Hao; Mok, Jorge W.; Yager, Kevin G.; Strzalka, Joseph; Nie, Wanyi; Mohite, Aditya D.; Verduzco, Rafael

    2015-11-03

    All-conjugated block copolymers may be an effective route to self-assembled photovoltaic devices, but we lack basic information on the relationship between molecular characteristics and photovoltaic performance. Here, we synthesize a library of poly(3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT) block poly((9,9-dialkylfluorene)-2,7-diyl-alt-[4,7-bis(alkylthiophen-5-yl)-2,1,3-benzothiadiazole]-2',2''-diyl) (PFTBT) donor-block-acceptor all-conjugated block copolymers and carry out a comprehensive study of processing conditions, crystallinity, domain sizes, and side-chain structure on photovoltaic device performance. We find that all block copolymers studied exhibit an out-of-plane crystal orientation after deposition, and on thermal annealing at high temperatures the crystal orientation flips to an in-plane orientation. By varying processing conditions on polymer photovoltaic devices, we show thatmore » the crystal orientation has only a modest effect (15-20%) on photovoltaic performance. The addition of side-chains to the PFTBT block is found to decrease photovoltaic power conversion efficiencies by at least an order of magnitude. Through grazing-incidence X-ray measurements we find that the addition of side-chains to the PFTBT acceptor block results in weak segregation and small (< 10 nm) block copolymer self-assembled donor and acceptor domains. This work is the most comprehensive to date on all-conjugated block copolymer systems and suggests that photovoltaic performance of block copolymers depends strongly on the miscibility of donor and acceptor blocks, which impacts donor and acceptor domain sizes and purity. Lastly, strategies for improving the device performance of block copolymer photovoltaics should seek to increase segregation between donor and acceptor polymer domains.« less

  8. Crystallization in Ordered Polydisperse Polyolefin Diblock Copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    Li, Sheng; Register, Richard A.; Landes, Brian G.; Hustad, Phillip D.; Weinhold, Jeffrey D.

    2010-12-07

    The morphologies of polydisperse ethylene-octene diblock copolymers, synthesized via a novel coordinative chain transfer polymerization process, are examined using two-dimensional synchrotron small-angle and wide-angle X-ray scattering on flow-aligned specimens. The diblock copolymers comprise one amorphous block with high 1-octene content and one semicrystalline block with relatively low 1-octene content, and each block ideally exhibits the most-probable distribution. Near-symmetric diblocks with a sufficiently large octene differential between the amorphous and semicrystalline blocks show well-ordered lamellar domain structures with long periods exceeding 100 nm. Orientation of these domain structures persists through multiple melting/recrystallization cycles, reflecting a robust structure which self-assembles in the melt. The domain spacings are nearly 3-fold larger than those in near-monodisperse polyethylene block copolymers of similar molecular weights. Although the well-ordered lamellar domain structure established in the melt is preserved in the solid state, the crystallites are isotropic in orientation. These materials display crystallization kinetics consistent with a spreading growth habit, indicating that the lamellae do not confine or template the growing crystals. The exceptionally large domain spacings and isotropic crystal growth are attributed to interblock mixing resulting from the large polydispersity; short hard blocks dissolved in the soft-block-rich domains swell the domain spacing in the melt and allow hard block crystallization to proceed across the lamellar domain interfaces.

  9. Bicontinuous Polymeric Microemulsions from Polydisperse Diblock Copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    Ellison, Christopher J.; Meuler, Adam J.; Qin, Jian; Evans, Christopher M.; Wolf, Lynn M.; Bates, Frank S.

    2009-06-12

    Polymeric bicontinuous microemulsions are thermodynamically stable structures typically formed by ternary blends of immiscible A and B homopolymers and a macromolecular surfactant such as an AB diblock copolymer. Investigations of these bicontinuous morphologies have largely focused on model systems in which all components have narrow molecular weight distributions. Here we probe the effects of AB diblock polydispersity in ternary blends of polystyrene (PS), polyisoprene (PI), and poly(styrene-b-isoprene) (PS-PI). Three series of blends were prepared using the same PS and PI homopolymers; two of them contain nearly monodisperse components while the third includes a polydisperse PS-PI diblock. The PS and PI homopolymers and two of the PS-PI diblocks were prepared by anionic polymerization using sec-butyllithium and have narrow molecular weight distributions. The polydisperse PS-PI diblock was prepared by anionic polymerization using the functional organolithium 3-tert-butyldimethylsilyloxy-1-propyllithium; this diblock has a polydisperse PS block (M{sub w}/M{sub n} = 1.57) and a nearly monodisperse PI block (Mw/Mn < 1.1). The phase behavior of the three series of blends was probed using a combination of dynamic mechanical spectroscopy, small-angle X-ray scattering, and cloud point measurements, and a bicontinuous microemulsion channel was identified in each system. These results prove that monodisperse components are not required to form bicontinuous microemulsions and highlight the utility of polydispersity as a tool to tune polymer blend phase behavior. The random-phase approximation, originally advanced by de Gennes, and self-consistent field theory are used to provide a theoretical supplement to the experimental work. These theories are able to predict the directions of the polydispersity-driven shifts in domain spacing, order-disorder transition temperatures, and the location of the microemulsion channel. Self-consistent field theory is also used in conjunction

  10. On the birefringence of multilayered symmetric diblock copolymer films

    SciTech Connect

    Kim, J.; Chin, I.; Smith, B.A.; Russell, T.P. ); Mays, J.W. . Dept. of Chemistry)

    1993-09-27

    The chain extension at lamellar interfaces was studied in thin films of symmetric diblock copolymers on gold substrates. The first copolymer consisted of blocks of polystyrene (PS) and poly(2-vinylpyridine) (P2VP), denoted P(S-b-2VP). The second was a diblock copolymer of PS and poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA), denoted P(S-b-MMA), on a gold substrate. Using attenuated total reflectance spectroscopy, the refractive indices parallel, n[sub [parallel

  11. Diblock Copolymers under Nano-Confinement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meng, Dong; Yin, Yuhua; Wang, Qiang

    2009-03-01

    Nano-confinement strongly affects and can thus be used to control the self-assembled morphology of block copolymers. Understanding such effects is of both fundamental and practical interest. In this work, we use real-space self-consistent field calculations with high accuracy to study the self-assembled morphology of diblock copolymers (DBC) under nano-confinement for several systems, including 1D lamellae-forming DBC confined between two homogeneous and parallel surfaces, in nano-pores, and on topologically patterned substrates; 2D cylinder-forming DBC on chemically strip-patterned substrates; and 3D gyroid- forming DBC confined between two homogeneous and parallel surfaces. The stable phases are identified through free-energy comparison, and our SCF results are compared with available experiments and Monte Carlo simulations in each case.

  12. Diblock Copolymers for Nanoscale Patterning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Russell, Thomas

    2006-03-01

    As the size scale of device features becomes increasingly smaller, conventional lithographic processes become increasingly more difficult and expensive, especially at a minimum feature size of less than 50 nm. Consequently, to achieve higher density circuits, storage devices or displays, it is evident that alternative routes need to be developed to circumvent both cost and manufacturing issues. An ideal process would be compatible with existing technological processes/manufacturing techniques and these strategies, together with novel materials, could allow significant advances to be made in meeting both short-term and long-term demands for higher density and faster devices. The self-assembly of block copolymers (BCP), two polymer chains covalently linked together at one end, provides a robust solution to these challenges. As thin films, immiscible BCP self-assemble into a range of highly-ordered morphologies where with size scale of the features is limited to the size of the polymers chains and are, therefore, nanoscopic in size. While self-assembly alone is sufficient for a number of applications in fabricating advanced microelectronics, directed self-orienting self-assembly processes are also required to produce complex devices with the required density and addressability of elements to meet future demands. By combining tailored self-assembly processes, a bottom-up approach, with micro-fabrication processes, a top-down approach, the ever-present thirst of the consumer for faster, better and cheaper devices can be met in very simple, yet robust, ways.

  13. Complexation Between Cationic Diblock Copolymers and Plasmid DNA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jung, Seyoung; Reineke, Theresa; Lodge, Timothy

    Deoxyribonucleic acids (DNA), as polyanions, can spontaneously bind with polycations to form polyelectrolyte complexes. When the polycation is a diblock copolymer with one cationic block and one uncharged hydrophilic block, the polyelectrolyte complexes formed with plasmid DNA (pDNA) are often colloidally stable, and show great promise in the field of polymeric gene therapy. While the resulting properties (size, stability, and toxicity to biological systems) of the complexes have been studied for numerous cationic diblocks, the fundamentals of the pDNA-diblock binding process have not been extensively investigated. Herein, we report how the cationic block content of a diblock influences the pDNA-diblock interactions. pDNA with 7164 base pairs and poly(2-deoxy-2-methacrylamido glucopyranose)-block-poly(N-(2-aminoethyl) methacrylamide) (PMAG-b-PAEMA) are used as the model pDNA and cationic diblock, respectively. To vary the cationic block content, two PMAG-b-PAEMA copolymers with similar PMAG block lengths but distinct PAEMA block lengths and a PAEMA homopolymer are utilized. We show that the enthalpy change from pDNA-diblock interactions is dependent on the cationic diblock composition, and is closely associated with both the binding strength and the pDNA tertiary structure.

  14. Disulfide-Functionalized Diblock Copolymer Worm Gels.

    PubMed

    Warren, Nicholas J; Rosselgong, Julien; Madsen, Jeppe; Armes, Steven P

    2015-08-10

    Two strategies for introducing disulfide groups at the outer surface of RAFT-synthesized poly(glycerol monomethacrylate)-poly(2-hydroxypropyl methacrylate) (PGMA-PHPMA, or Gx-Hy for brevity) diblock copolymer worms are investigated. The first approach involved statistical copolymerization of GMA with a small amount of disulfide dimethacrylate (DSDMA, or D) comonomer to afford a G54-D0.50 macromolecular chain transfer agent (macro-CTA); this synthesis was conducted in relatively dilute solution in order to ensure mainly intramolecular cyclization and hence the formation of linear chains. Alternatively, a new disulfide-based bifunctional RAFT agent (DSDB) was used to prepare a G45-S-S-G45 (or (G45-S)2) macro-CTA. A binary mixture of a non-functionalized G55 macro-CTA was utilized with each of these two disulfide-based macro-CTAs in turn for the RAFT aqueous dispersion polymerization of 2-hydroxypropyl methacrylate (HPMA). By targeting a PHPMA DP of 130 and systematically varying the molar ratio of the two macro-CTAs, a series of disulfide-functionalized diblock copolymer worm gels were obtained. For both formulations, oscillatory rheology studies confirmed that higher disulfide contents led to stronger gels, presumably as a result of inter-worm covalent bond formation via disulfide/thiol exchange. Using the DSDB-based macro-CTA led to the strongest worm gels, and this formulation also proved to be more effective in suppressing the thermosensitive behavior that is observed for the nondisulfide-functionalized control worm gel. However, macroscopic precipitation occurred when the proportion of DSDB-based macro-CTA was increased to 50 mol %, whereas the DSDMA-based macro-CTA could be utilized at up to 80 mol %. Finally, the worm gel modulus could be reduced to that of a nondisulfide-containing worm gel by reductive cleavage of the inter-worm disulfide bonds using excess tris(2-carboxyethyl)phosphine (TCEP) to yield thiol groups. These new biomimetic worm gels are

  15. Molecular origin of photovoltaic performance in donor-block-acceptor all-conjugated block copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    Smith, Kendall A.; Lin, Yen -Hao; Mok, Jorge W.; Yager, Kevin G.; Strzalka, Joseph; Nie, Wanyi; Mohite, Aditya D.; Verduzco, Rafael

    2015-11-03

    All-conjugated block copolymers may be an effective route to self-assembled photovoltaic devices, but we lack basic information on the relationship between molecular characteristics and photovoltaic performance. Here, we synthesize a library of poly(3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT) block poly((9,9-dialkylfluorene)-2,7-diyl-alt-[4,7-bis(alkylthiophen-5-yl)-2,1,3-benzothiadiazole]-2',2''-diyl) (PFTBT) donor-block-acceptor all-conjugated block copolymers and carry out a comprehensive study of processing conditions, crystallinity, domain sizes, and side-chain structure on photovoltaic device performance. We find that all block copolymers studied exhibit an out-of-plane crystal orientation after deposition, and on thermal annealing at high temperatures the crystal orientation flips to an in-plane orientation. By varying processing conditions on polymer photovoltaic devices, we show that the crystal orientation has only a modest effect (15-20%) on photovoltaic performance. The addition of side-chains to the PFTBT block is found to decrease photovoltaic power conversion efficiencies by at least an order of magnitude. Through grazing-incidence X-ray measurements we find that the addition of side-chains to the PFTBT acceptor block results in weak segregation and small (< 10 nm) block copolymer self-assembled donor and acceptor domains. This work is the most comprehensive to date on all-conjugated block copolymer systems and suggests that photovoltaic performance of block copolymers depends strongly on the miscibility of donor and acceptor blocks, which impacts donor and acceptor domain sizes and purity. Lastly, strategies for improving the device performance of block copolymer photovoltaics should seek to increase segregation between donor and acceptor polymer domains.

  16. Molecular Exchange in Ordered Diblock Copolymer Micelles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Choi, Soo-Hyung; Lodge, Timothy; Bates, Frank

    2011-03-01

    Previously, molecular exchange between spherical micelles in dilute solution (1 vol% polymer) was investigated using time-resolved small-angle neutron scattering (TR-SANS). As the concentration of spherical micelles formed by the diblock copolymers increases, the micelles begin to overlap and eventually pack onto body-centered cubic (BCC) lattice. In this study, concentrated, ordered micelles (15 vol% polymers) prepared by dispersing isotopically labeled poly(styrene- b -ethylene-alt-propylene) in an isotopic squalane mixture was investigated to understand the micellar concentration dependence of the molecular exchange. Perfectly random mixing of isotopically labeled micelles on the BCC lattice was confirmed by SANS patterns where the interparticle contribution vanishes, resulting in an intensity that directly relates to the exchange kinetics. The measured molecular exchange process for the concentrated, ordered system is qualitatively consistent with the previous observations, but the rate is more than an order of magnitude slower than that for the dilute, disordered system. Infineum(IPrime), MRSEC(NSF), NIST.

  17. Relaxation processes in a lower disorder order transition diblock copolymer

    SciTech Connect

    Sanz, Alejandro; Ezquerra, Tiberio A.; Nogales, Aurora

    2015-02-14

    The dynamics of lower disorder-order temperature diblock copolymer leading to phase separation has been observed by X ray photon correlation spectroscopy. Two different modes have been characterized. A non-diffusive mode appears at temperatures below the disorder to order transition, which can be associated to compositional fluctuations, that becomes slower as the interaction parameter increases, in a similar way to the one observed for diblock copolymers exhibiting phase separation upon cooling. At temperatures above the disorder to order transition T{sub ODT}, the dynamics becomes diffusive, indicating that after phase separation in Lower Disorder-Order Transition (LDOT) diblock copolymers, the diffusion of chain segments across the interface is the governing dynamics. As the segregation is stronger, the diffusive process becomes slower. Both observed modes have been predicted by the theory describing upper order-disorder transition systems, assuming incompressibility. However, the present results indicate that the existence of these two modes is more universal as they are present also in compressible diblock copolymers exhibiting a lower disorder-order transition. No such a theory describing the dynamics in LDOT block copolymers is available, and these experimental results may offer some hints to understanding the dynamics in these systems. The dynamics has also been studied in the ordered state, and for the present system, the non-diffusive mode disappears and only a diffusive mode is observed. This mode is related to the transport of segment in the interphase, due to the weak segregation on this system.

  18. Ordering stripe structures of nanoscale rods in diblock copolymer scaffolds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Kang; Ma, Yu-qiang

    2002-05-01

    We report a simulation on the formation of ordered stripe structures of nanoscale rods driven by symmetric diblock copolymer melts. Due to the preferential adsorption of one species of the diblock onto the mobile rods, the phase ordering process will couple with the movement of rods. We find that the self-assembly of rods on the copolymer scaffold produces the highly ordered nanowires of rods, and copolymer blends in turn form the well-oriented lamellar structure. This is due to the interplay among the micro-phase separating dynamics in the diblock copolymer, the wetting interaction between rods and diblock copolymer, and the nematic ordering dynamics of rods. We examine the influence of the domain size, the wetting strength, and the rod number density on the formation of such a nanoscale structure. Additionally, we indicate that the orientation of the pattern can be well controlled by external fields acting on the rods. The results suggest that our model system may provide a novel and simple way to control and design the ordering nanowire structure.

  19. Double-Gyroid Network Morphology in Tapered Diblock Copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    R Roy; J Park; W Young; S Mastroianni; M Tureau; T Epps III

    2011-12-31

    We report the formation of a double-gyroid network morphology in normal-tapered poly(isoprene-b-isoprene/styrene-b-styrene) [P(I-IS-S)] and inverse-tapered poly(isoprene-b-styrene/isoprene-b-styrene) [P(I-SI-S)] diblock copolymers. Our tapered diblock copolymers with overall poly(styrene) volume fractions of 0.65 (normal-tapered) and 0.67 (inverse-tapered), and tapered regions comprising 30 vol % of the total polymer, were shown to self-assemble into the double-gyroid network morphology through a combination of small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The block copolymers were synthesized by anionic polymerization, where the tapered region between the pure poly(isoprene) and poly(styrene) blocks was generated using a semibatch feed with programmed syringe pumps. The overall composition of these tapered copolymers lies within the expected network-forming region for conventional poly(isoprene-b-styrene) [P(I-S)] diblock copolymers. Dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA) clearly demonstrated that the order-disorder transition temperatures (T{sub ODT}'s) of the network-forming tapered block copolymers were depressed when compared to the T{sub ODT} of their nontapered counterpart, with the P(I-SI-S) showing the greater drop in T{sub ODT}. These results indicate that it is possible to manipulate the copolymer composition profile between blocks in a diblock copolymer, allowing significant control over the T{sub ODT}, while maintaining the ability to form complex network structures.

  20. Double-Gyroid Network Morphology in Tapered Diblock Copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    Roy, Raghunath; Park, Jong Keun; Young, Wen-Shiue; Mastroianni, Sarah E.; Tureau, Maeva S.; Epps, III, Thomas H.

    2012-11-14

    We report the formation of a double-gyroid network morphology in normal-tapered poly(isoprene-b-isoprene/styrene-b-styrene) [P(I-IS-S)] and inverse-tapered poly(isoprene-b-styrene/isoprene-b-styrene) [P(I-SI-S)] diblock copolymers. Our tapered diblock copolymers with overall poly(styrene) volume fractions of 0.65 (normal-tapered) and 0.67 (inverse-tapered), and tapered regions comprising 30 vol % of the total polymer, were shown to self-assemble into the double-gyroid network morphology through a combination of small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The block copolymers were synthesized by anionic polymerization, where the tapered region between the pure poly(isoprene) and poly(styrene) blocks was generated using a semibatch feed with programmed syringe pumps. The overall composition of these tapered copolymers lies within the expected network-forming region for conventional poly(isoprene-b-styrene) [P(I-S)] diblock copolymers. Dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA) clearly demonstrated that the order-disorder transition temperatures (T{sub ODT}'s) of the network-forming tapered block copolymers were depressed when compared to the T{sub ODT} of their nontapered counterpart, with the P(I-SI-S) showing the greater drop in T{sub ODT}. These results indicate that it is possible to manipulate the copolymer composition profile between blocks in a diblock copolymer, allowing significant control over the T{sub ODT}, while maintaining the ability to form complex network structures.

  1. Self-assembly of cyclic rod-coil diblock copolymers.

    PubMed

    He, Linli; Chen, Zenglei; Zhang, Ruifen; Zhang, Linxi; Jiang, Zhouting

    2013-03-01

    The phase behavior of cyclic rod-coil diblock copolymer melts is investigated by the dissipative particle dynamics simulation. In order to understand the effect of chain topological architecture better, we also study the linear rod-coil system. The comparison of the calculated phase diagrams between the two rod-coil copolymers reveals that the order-disorder transition point (χN)ODT for cyclic rod-coil diblock copolymers is always higher than that of equivalent linear rod-coil diblocks. In addition, the phase diagram for cyclic system is more "symmetrical," due to the topological constraint. Moreover, there are significant differences in the self-assembled overall morphologies and the local molecular arrangements. For example, frod = 0.5, both lamellar structures are formed while rod packing is different greatly in cyclic and linear cases. The lamellae with rods arranged coplanarly into bilayers occurs in cyclic rod-coil diblocks, while the lamellar structure with rods arranged end by end into interdigitated bilayers appears in linear counterpart. In both the lamellar phases, the domain size ratio of cyclic to linear diblocks is ranged from 0.63 to 0.70. This is attributed to that the cyclic architecture with the additional junction increases the contacts between incompatible blocks and prevents the coil chains from expanding as much as the linear cases. As frod = 0.7, the hexagonally packed cylinder is observed for cyclic rod-coil diblocks, while liquid-crystalline smectic A lamellar phase is formed in linear system. As a result, the cyclization of a linear rod-coil block copolymer can induce remarkable differences in the self-assembly behavior and also diversify its physical properties and applications greatly. PMID:23485326

  2. Self-Assembly of Globular Protein-Polymer Diblock Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, C. S.; Olsen, B. D.

    2011-03-01

    The self-assembly of globular protein-polymer diblock copolymers into nanostructured phases is demonstrated as an elegant and simple method for structural control in biocatalysis or bioelectronics. In order to fundamentally investigate self-assembly in these complex block copolymer systems, a red fluorescent protein was expressed in E. coli and site-specifically conjugated to a low polydispersity poly(N-isopropyl acrylamide) (PNIPAM) block using thiol-maleimide coupling to form a well-defined model globular protein-polymer diblock. Functional protein materials are obtained by solvent evaporation and solvent annealing above and below the lower critical solution temperature of PNIPAM in order to access different pathways toward self-assembly. Small angle x-ray scattering and microscopy are used to show that the diblock forms lamellar nanostructures and to explore dependence of nanostructure formation on processing conditions. Circular dichroism and UV-vis show that a large fraction of the protein remains in its folded state after conjugation, and wide angle x-ray scattering demonstrates that diblock copolymer self-assembly changes the protein packing symmetry.

  3. Confined Crystallization in Poly(3-alkylthiophene)-containing Diblock Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davidson, Emily; Ho, Victor; Beckingham, Bryan; Segalman, Rachel

    2014-03-01

    Confined crystallization within a diblock copolymer of a conjugated, semiconducting poly(3-alkylthiophene) (P3AT) block has been achieved by selecting an alkyl side chain that significantly depresses the crystalline driving force relative to the self-assembly driving force. Here, we demonstrate flow alignment of these P3AT-containing diblocks. In addition, we show that the chain axis of the semicrystalline P3AT orients preferentially relative to domain interfaces; the degree of crystalline orientation may be controlled as a function of domain width. Further work will examine the role of thermal treatments on crystallite orientation and morphology within confinement.

  4. Graphoepitaxy of diblock-copolymers microdomains with chemical patterns

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Checco, Antonio; Ocko, Benjamin M.; Misner, Matthew; Xu, Ji; Russell, Thomas P.

    2007-03-01

    Topographically patterned substrates have been used in recent years to laterally confine diblock copolymer (DBC) thin films in order to induce long-range lateral order of the DBC microdomain lattice with respect to a macroscopic reference. Here we demonstrate that surfaces with pure chemical patterns can be used to confine laterally diblock copolymers thin films through template-induced dewetting. A thin DBC film (PS-PEO) is spun cast on top of a surface chemically patterned with micron-sized, wettable domains prepared by oxidative nanolithography. Subsequently, annealing is used to direct the dewetting of the thin film into regions which are conformal to the patterns. We investigate the conditions (film thickness, annealing time) necessary to obtain dewetted structures reproducing the pattern shape with a high level of fidelity. In addition, we study the effect of pattern shape and size on the long-range order of DBC microdomains.

  5. Block copolymer blend phase behavior: Binary diblock blends and amphiphilic block copolymer/epoxy mixtures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lipic, Paul Martin

    The phase behavior of block copolymers and block copolymer blends has provided an extensive amount of exciting research and industrial applications for over thirty years. However, the unique nanoscale morphologies of microphase separated block copolymer systems is still not completely understood. This thesis examines the phase behavior of diblock copolymers and binary diblock copolymer blends in the strong segregation limit (SSL), and blends of an amphiphilic diblock copolymer with an epoxy resin. Studies of high molecular weight (˜84,000 g/mole) poly(ethylene)-poly(ethyl ethylene) (PE-PEE) diblock copolymers probed the ability of block copolymers to reach equilibrium in the SSL. Samples of pure diblocks or binary diblock blends prepared using different preparation techniques (solvent casting or precipitation) had different phase behaviors, as identified with transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and small-angle x-ray scattering (SAXS), confirming non-equilibrium phase behavior. This non-equilibrium behavior was metastable, and these results identify the caution that should be used when claiming equilibrium phase behavior in the SSL. Blends of an amphiphilic diblock copolymer, poly(ethylene oxide)-poly(ethylene-alt-propylene) (PEO-PEP) with a polymerizable epoxy resin selectively miscible with PEO, poly(Bisphenol-A-co-epichlorohydrin), supported theoretical calculations and increased the understanding of block copolymer/homopolymer blends. These blends formed different ordered structures (lamellae, bicontinuous cubic gyroid, hexagonally packed cylinders, cubic and hexagonally packed spheres) as well as a disordered spherical micellar structure, identified with SAXS and rheological measurements. Addition of hardener, methylene dianiline, to the system resulted in cross-linking of the epoxy resin and formation of a thermoset material. Macrophase separation between the epoxy and block copolymer did not occur, but local expulsion of the PEO from the epoxy was

  6. Viscoelastic response of diblock copolymers to oscillatory shear.

    PubMed

    Rüdiger, S

    2005-05-01

    A mesoscopic model for diblock copolymers is combined with a simple rheological description of the viscoelastic contrast of its two phases. Under oscillatory shear the contrast generates secondary velocity fields and substantial deviations of volume-averaged flow parameters. The validity of our analytical findings is tested with three-dimensional numerical simulations. Furthermore, we consider the effect of advection by the generated flows on the stability of ordered lamellar states and propose a new criterion for the selection of orientations. PMID:15864726

  7. The Influence of Polydispersity on the Thermodynamics of Diblock Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lynd, Nathaniel

    2005-03-01

    The effects of the molecular weight distribution on the thermodynamics of diblock copolymers have been predicted to affect order-disorder transitions (ODT), order-order transitions and the equilibrium morphology adopted.^1,2 We prepared several sets of Poly[(ethylene-alt-propylene)-b-(D,L-lactide)] diblock copolymers with controlled molecular weights, compositions and polydispersities (PDIs). Rheology and small angle x-ray scattering were used to evaluate the effects of PDI on the lamellar domain spacing, the ODT, and the resultant morphology. For symmetrical samples, the lamellar domain spacing increased with increasing PDI. The degree of segregation at the ODT ((χN)ODT) was dependent upon the volume fraction of the polydisperse component (fPLA). Interestingly, for fPLA = 0.33 (χN)ODT decreased with increasing PDI but for fPLA= 0.64 (χN)ODT increased with increasing PDI. We also demonstrated that an increase in PDI at constant fPLA results in a change in equilibrium morphology. Monte Carlo simulations addressing the effects of fluctuations on the ODT of polydisperse diblock copolymer melts were also performed. .(1) Sides,S.W.; Frederickson, G.H. J. Chem. Phys. 2004, 121,4974. (2) Burger,C.; Ruland, W.; Semenov, A.N. Macromolecules 1990, 23, 3339.

  8. Crystallization in Poly(ethylene)-containing Diblock Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamley, Ian W.; Fairclough, J. Patrick A.; Ryan, Anthony J.; Bates, Frank S.

    1997-03-01

    Crystallization in diblock copolymers containing poly(ethylene) (PE) has been studied using small-angle x-ray scattering at the Synchrotron Radiation Source, Daresbury Laboratory, U.K. For block copolymers that form ordered phases in the melt, chain folding of PE on crystallization destroys the melt morphology and the solid structure is found to be lamellar, even if the melt structure is hexagonal-packed cylinders. The orientation of the crystallized PE stems was deduced to be parallel to the lamellar interface on the basis of the orientation of peaks in the wide-angle x-ray scattering pattern with respect to those in the SAXS. For a diblock containing a glassy component, diffuse scattering parallel to the meridian in the SAXS pattern indicates lateral correlations between PE crystallites within the layers of semicrystalline PE and this was modelled using a Markov lattice. These lateral correlations are not present when the non-crystalline component is an amorphous melt. In a diblock with f_PE = 0.35, epitaxial melting of the lamellar solid structure to a hexagonal-packed cylinder structure was observed. The kinetics of crystallization were determined from the time dependence of the SAXS invariant, and found to follow Avrami kinetics with n=3, consistent with nucleation and growth of spherulites.

  9. Synthesis of amphiphilic diblock copolymer for surface modification of Ethylene-Norbornene Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Levinsen, Simon; Svendsen, Winnie Edith; Horsewell, Andy; Almdal, Kristoffer

    2014-03-01

    The aim of this work is to produce polymer modifiers in order to develop hydrophilic polymeric surfaces for use in microfluidics. The use of hydrophilic polymers in microfluidics will have many advantages e.g. preventing protein absorbance. Here we present an amphiphilic diblock copolymer consisting of a bulk material compatible block and a hydrophilic block. To utilize the possibility of incorporating diblock copolymers into ethylene-norbornene copolymers, we have in this work developed a model poly(ethylene-1-butene) polymer compatible with the commercial available ethylene-norbornene copolymer TOPAS. Through matching of the radius of gyration for the model polymer and TOPAS the miscibility was achieved. The poly(ethylene-1-butene) polymer was synthesized from a hydrogenated anionic polymerized polybutadiene polymer. As hydrophilic block poly(ethylene oxide) was subsequently added also with anionic polymerization. Recent miscibility results between the model polymer and TOPAS will be presented, as well ongoing efforts to study the hydrophilic surface.

  10. Gyroid nickel nanostructures from diblock copolymer supramolecules.

    PubMed

    Vukovic, Ivana; Punzhin, Sergey; Voet, Vincent S D; Vukovic, Zorica; de Hosson, Jeff Th M; ten Brinke, Gerrit; Loos, Katja

    2014-01-01

    Nanoporous metal foams possess a unique combination of properties - they are catalytically active, thermally and electrically conductive, and furthermore, have high porosity, high surface-to-volume and strength-to-weight ratio. Unfortunately, common approaches for preparation of metallic nanostructures render materials with highly disordered architecture, which might have an adverse effect on their mechanical properties. Block copolymers have the ability to self-assemble into ordered nanostructures and can be applied as templates for the preparation of well-ordered metal nanofoams. Here we describe the application of a block copolymer-based supramolecular complex - polystyrene-block-poly(4-vinylpyridine)(pentadecylphenol) PS-b-P4VP(PDP) - as a precursor for well-ordered nickel nanofoam. The supramolecular complexes exhibit a phase behavior similar to conventional block copolymers and can self-assemble into the bicontinuous gyroid morphology with two PS networks placed in a P4VP(PDP) matrix. PDP can be dissolved in ethanol leading to the formation of a porous structure that can be backfilled with metal. Using electroless plating technique, nickel can be inserted into the template's channels. Finally, the remaining polymer can be removed via pyrolysis from the polymer/inorganic nanohybrid resulting in nanoporous nickel foam with inverse gyroid morphology. PMID:24797367

  11. Gyroid Nickel Nanostructures from Diblock Copolymer Supramolecules

    PubMed Central

    Vukovic, Ivana; Punzhin, Sergey; Voet, Vincent S. D.; Vukovic, Zorica; de Hosson, Jeff Th. M.; ten Brinke, Gerrit; Loos, Katja

    2014-01-01

    Nanoporous metal foams possess a unique combination of properties - they are catalytically active, thermally and electrically conductive, and furthermore, have high porosity, high surface-to-volume and strength-to-weight ratio. Unfortunately, common approaches for preparation of metallic nanostructures render materials with highly disordered architecture, which might have an adverse effect on their mechanical properties. Block copolymers have the ability to self-assemble into ordered nanostructures and can be applied as templates for the preparation of well-ordered metal nanofoams. Here we describe the application of a block copolymer-based supramolecular complex - polystyrene-block-poly(4-vinylpyridine)(pentadecylphenol) PS-b-P4VP(PDP) - as a precursor for well-ordered nickel nanofoam. The supramolecular complexes exhibit a phase behavior similar to conventional block copolymers and can self-assemble into the bicontinuous gyroid morphology with two PS networks placed in a P4VP(PDP) matrix. PDP can be dissolved in ethanol leading to the formation of a porous structure that can be backfilled with metal. Using electroless plating technique, nickel can be inserted into the template's channels. Finally, the remaining polymer can be removed via pyrolysis from the polymer/inorganic nanohybrid resulting in nanoporous nickel foam with inverse gyroid morphology. PMID:24797367

  12. Morphology of diblock copolymers under confinement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ackerman, David; Ganapathysubramanian, Baskar

    The structure adopted by polymer chains is of particular intrest for materials design. In particular, a great deal of effort has been made to study diblock polymers due to the importance they have in industrial applications. The bulk structure of most systems has been the most widely studied. However, when under the effect of confinement, the polymer chains are forced to adopt structures differing from the familiar bulk phases. As many applications utilize polymers in sizes and shapes that lead to these non bulk structures, the confinement effects are important. A commonly used tool for computationally determining structures is the continuum self consistant field theory (SCFT). We discuss our highly scalable parallel framework for SCFT using real space methods (finite element) that is especially well suited to modelling complex geometries. This framework is capable of modeling both Gaussian and worm like chains. We illustate the use of the software framework in determining structures under varying degrees of confinement. We detail the method used and present selected results from a systematic study of confinement using arbitrary structures.

  13. Response behavior of diblock copolymer brushes in explicit solvent

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gong, Kai; Marshall, Bennett D.; Chapman, Walter G.

    2012-10-01

    The understanding of phase behavior of copolymer brushes is of fundamental importance for the design of smart materials. In this paper, we have performed classical density functional theory calculations to study diblock copolymer brushes (A-B) in an explicit solvent which prefers the A block to B block. With increasing B-block length (NB), we find a structural transition of the copolymer brush from mixed to collapsed, partial-exposed, and exposed structure, which is qualitatively consistent with experiments. The phase transitions are attributed to the interplay between entropic cost of folding copolymer brushes and enthalpic effect of contact between unlike components. In addition, we examine the effect of different parameters, such as grafting density (ρg), the bottom block length (NA), and the chain length of solvent (NS) on the solvent response of copolymer brushes. The transition chain length (NB) increases with decreasing ρg and NA, and a smaller solvent molecule makes the collapsed structure less stable due to its lower penetration cost. Our results provide the insight to phase behavior of copolymer brushes in selective solvents from a molecular view.

  14. Structure and Interactions in Concentrated Diblock Copolymer Solutions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McConnell, Glen A.

    We report on investigations of polystyrene/polyisoprene (PS/PI) diblock copolymers suspended in decane using small angle scattering techniques. The primary objective of this research is the understanding of the bulk properties and structure in concentrated diblock copolymers in a solvent selective for one block. In this case, decane is a good solvent for polyisoprene. Suspending PS/PI diblocks in decane at low concentrations produces monodisperse, spherical micelles comprising a dense core of polystyrene and a diffuse corona of polyisoprene. These micelles are well idealized as spherical cores with a fixed number of polyisoprene chains tethered to the surface. Since the local curvature plays an important role in determining the coronal density profile, the core radius and aggregation number are experimentally calculated. This experimental characterization lends each polymeric micelle to a description of the micellar architecture and pair-interaction potential through use of self-consistent mean field equations for tethered-chain systems. We use these pair-potentials to describe the liquid-like interference and disorder-order transition observed experimentally. Gillan's method, subject to a Rogers-Young closure, provides a description of the liquid-state. Density functional theory, specifically the modified weighted density approximation of Denton and Ashcroft, is used to estimate the solid-state. We supplement these calculations with a semi-quantitative phase diagram demonstrating the diversity in phase behavior resulting from tuning the range of the repulsions by varying block asymmetry; the phase diagram includes regions of face-centered cubic (FCC) and body-centered cubic (BCC) crystals depending on the range of the coronal layer thickness relative to the core dimension. In addition to these studies, we conclude with a discussion of the phase behavior of diblock copolymers at concentrations intermediate to those witnessing cubic micellar crystals and the ordered

  15. Lamellar diblock copolymer grain boundary morphology. 1. Twist boundary characterization

    SciTech Connect

    Gido, S.P.; Gunther, J.; Thomas, E.L. . Dept. of Materials Science and Engineering); Hoffman, D. . Dept. of Mathematics and Statistics)

    1993-08-16

    Grain boundary morphologies in poly(styrene-b-butadiene) lamellar diblock copolymers were characterized using transmission electron microscopy (TEM). Two types of twist grain boundaries were observed in which microphase separation of the two blocks was maintained in the grain boundary region by intermaterial dividing surfaces that approximate classically known minimal surfaces. The geometry of these interfaces was demonstrated by comparing experimental TEM images with ray tracing computer simulations of the model surfaces as the projection direction was systematically varied in both the experimental and simulated images. The two morphologies observed were found to have intermaterial dividing surfaces that approximate either Scherk's first (doubly periodic) surface or a section of the right helicoid. The helicoid section boundary was observed at low twist angles, less than or equal to about 15. The Scherk surface family of boundary morphologies, which consists of a doubly periodic array of saddle surfaces, was found over the entire twist range from 0 to 90[degree]. As the twist angle approaches 0[degree] the Scherk surface grain boundary morphology is transformed into a single screw dislocation that has an intermaterial dividing surface with the geometry of a single helicoid. Direct TEM imaging of the detailed core structure of this screw dislocation is presented. These images demonstrate that in the lamellar diblock copolymer the screw dislocation core is nonsingular. This nonsingular core structure represents a radical departure from the singular core structures observed in classical studies of dislocations in atomic crystals.

  16. Geometric frustration phases of diblock copolymers in nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Li, Shiben; Chen, Peng; Zhang, Linxi; Liang, Haojun

    2011-04-19

    The geometric frustration phases are investigated for diblock copolymers in nanoparticles with neutral surfaces using real-space self-consistent field theory. First, a rich variety of geometric frustration phases with specific symmetries are observed in the polymer nanoparticles with invariable diameters by constructing the phase diagrams arranged as the volume fraction and Flory-Huggins interaction parameter. Most of the space in the phase diagram is filled with phases with strong symmetries, such as spherical or cubic symmetries, while a number of asymmetric or axisymmetric phases are located in a narrow space in the diagram. Then the geometric frustration phases are examined systematically for the diblock copolymers with special polymer parameters, and a rich variety of novel frustration phases with multilayered structures are observed by varying the diameters of the nanoparticles. Furthermore, the investigations on the free energies indicate that the transitions between these frustrated phases are first-order, and the formation mechanism of the frustration phases is reasonably elucidated. PMID:21417241

  17. SEM Technique for Depth Profiling the Morphology of Diblock Copolymer Thin Films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harrison, Christopher; Park, Miri; Chaikin, Paul; Register, Richard; Adamson, Doug

    1996-03-01

    We present a novel technique which allows the investigation of thin film diblock copolymer microphase morphology on a variety of substrates and at different film depths. Using a high resolution, low voltage Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM), we examined the topology and underlying morphology of styrene-butadiene diblock copolymer films. In order to enhance the contrast between the styrene and butadiene regions, we stained the butadiene with osmium tetraoxide. The internal morphology of the diblock copolymer film was exposed by using a non-selective fluorine-based reactive ion etching (RIE) technique. By controlling the depth of the RIE, we can effectively peel off one monolayer at a time. By alternating between RIE and SEM, we can examine the diblock copolymer film morphology at different depths. We also investigated the relationship between island formation and internal polymer microstructure. This work was supported by the NSF under DMR 9400362.

  18. Stress induced topographic patterning in thin diblock copolymer films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Croll, Andrew; Crosby, Alfred

    2011-03-01

    When a thin rigid polymer film is attached to a soft elastic substrate and placed in a state of compressive stress, the system wrinkles as a critical stress is surpassed. This simple deformation pattern contains information about the mechanical state of both the polymer film and substrate. Although classical mechanics can be used to relate the global deformation of the film/substrate to the local wrinkle geometry as a function of materials properties, relatively little is known about how the thin capping film material accommodates the localized bending (and therefore localized stress). Here we conduct wrinkling experiments using a model diblock copolymer/elastomer composite. Wrinkling a homogeneous, disordered block copolymer film places the film in a well-defined initial stress state. When heated above its glass transition, the wrinkled film flows, microphase separates, and relaxes from the stress imposed by local wrinkle deformations. The periodic stress relaxation leads to the emergence of a new pattern in the microphase separated surface structure, thus providing new insight into how block copolymers react to stress.

  19. Molecular Interaction Control in Diblock Copolymer Blends and Multiblock Copolymers with Opposite Phase Behaviors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cho, Junhan

    2014-03-01

    Here we show how to control molecular interactions via mixing AB and AC diblock copolymers, where one copolymer exhibits upper order-disorder transition and the other does lower disorder-order transition. Linear ABC triblock copolymers possessing both barotropic and baroplastic pairs are also taken into account. A recently developed random-phase approximation (RPA) theory and the self-consistent field theory (SCFT) for general compressible mixtures are used to analyze stability criteria and morphologies for the given systems. It is demonstrated that the copolymer systems can yield a variety of phase behaviors in their temperature and pressure dependence upon proper mixing conditions and compositions, which is caused by the delicate force fields generated in the systems. We acknowledge the financial support from National Research Foundation of Korea and Center for Photofunctional Energy Materials.

  20. Hard-Surface Effects in Diblock Copolymer Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meng, Dong; Yin, Yuhua; Acres, Jacqueline; Wang, Qiang

    2008-03-01

    Polymer chains near a hard (impenetrable) surface have different conformations from those in the bulk. For diblock copolymers (DBC), a hard surface has both energetic and entropic effects. The decrease of polymer segmental density near a hard surface reduces A-B repulsion and favors self-assembled morphologies with more A-B interfaces near the surface, while the enrichment of chain ends and depletion of middle segments near the surface favor parallel morphologies where chains orient mainly perpendicular to the surface. Using parallel self-consistent field calculations with high accuracy, we have studied in detail the hard-surface effects in three DBC systems: DBC thin films confined between two flat homogeneous surfaces, DBC in nanopores, and DBC nanocomposites.

  1. Fluctuations in Symmetric Diblock Copolymers: Testing Theories Old and New

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qin, Jian; Morse, David C.

    2012-06-01

    Computer simulations are used to study composition fluctuations in disordered diblock copolymer melts over a range of values of the chain length N, and test several theories for the structure factor S(q). Specifically, we test the random-phase approximation (RPA), which is based on a self-consistent field treatment of fluctuations, the Fredrickson-Helfand theory, which was designed to describe fluctuations near the order-disorder transition, and the relatively new renormalized one-loop (ROL) theory. The results confirm claims that the RPA is exact in the limit N→∞ and that the ROL theory yields the dominant corrections to the RPA within a systematic expansion in powers of N-1/2, and show that the ROL theory is much more accurate than either older theory.

  2. From multi-responsive tri- and diblock copolymers to diblock-copolymer-decorated gold nanoparticles: the effect of architecture on micellization behaviors in aqueous solutions.

    PubMed

    Song, Lichun; Sun, Hui; Chen, Xiaolu; Han, Xia; Liu, Honglai

    2015-06-28

    This work reports on the aqueous stimuli-responsive behaviors of an ABA triblock copolymer, a BAB triblock copolymer, an AB diblock copolymer and citrate-based gold nanoparticles decorated with AB diblock copolymers (where A is the pH- and thermo-responsive poly[N,N-(dimethylamino)ethyl methacrylate] (PDMAEMA) and B is the thermo-responsive poly[2-(2-methoxyethoxy)ethyl methacrylate] (PMEO2MA)). The symmetric triblock polymers were synthesized via sequential atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) using a disulfide-functionalized initiator. Subsequently, the thiol-ended diblock copolymers were facilely obtained by reducing these triblock copolymers and were grafted onto gold nanoparticle (AuNP) surfaces via ligand exchange to yield stimuli-sensitive gold nanoparticles (Au@AB and Au@BA). The ABA and BAB triblock copolymers exhibited two-step thermo-induced aggregation behavior in water at a pH near the isoelectric point (IEP), which resulted in the formation of micelles after the first lower critical solution temperature (LCST) and large aggregates consisting of clustered micelles above the second LCST transition. The significant difference between the micelle sizes of the ABA and BAB copolymers, such that the micelle size of the BAB copolymer was smaller than that of the ABA copolymer although both had a similar unit composition, suggests a distinction between the micelle structures. The "branch" and "flower-like" micelles that are formed in the ABA and BAB aqueous solutions, respectively, ultimately governed the phase transition behaviors. The AB diblock copolymer exhibited similar micellization behavior and a micelle size roughly similar to that of the ABA triblock copolymer, although the chain length of the AB copolymer is only half that of the ABA copolymer. Both Au@PDMAEMA-PMEO2MA and Au@PMEO2MA-PDMAEMA showed similar dual LCST behaviors and pH-responsive behaviors in aqueous solutions without the addition of salt. A significant difference was observed

  3. Clear antismudge unimolecular coatings of diblock copolymers on glass plates.

    PubMed

    Macoretta, Danielle; Rabnawaz, Muhammad; Grozea, Claudia M; Liu, Guojun; Wang, Yu; Crumblehulme, Alison; Wyer, Martin

    2014-12-10

    Two poly[3-(triisopropyloxysilyl)propyl methacrylate]-block-poly[2-(perfluorooctyl)ethyl methacrylate] (PIPSMA-b-PFOEMA) samples and one poly(perfluoropropylene oxide)-block-poly-[3-(triisopropyloxysilyl)propyl methacrylate] (PFPO-b-PIPSMA) sample were synthesized, characterized, and used to coat glass plates. These coatings were formed by evaporating a dilute polymer solution containing HCl, which catalyzed PIPSMA's sol-gel chemistry. Polymer usage was minimized by targeting at diblock copolymer unimolecular (brush) layers that consisted of a sol-gelled grafted PIPSMA layer and an oil- and water-repellant fluorinated surface layer. Investigated is the effect of varying the catalyst amount, polymer amount, as well as block copolymer type and composition on the structure, morphology, and oil- and water-repellency of the coatings. Under optimized conditions, the prepared coatings were optically clear and resistant to writing by a permanent marker. The marker's trace was the faintest on PFPO-b-PIPSMA coatings. In addition, the PFPO-b-PIPSMA coatings were far more wear-resistant than the PIPSMA-b-PFOEMA coatings. PMID:25399630

  4. Coarse-grain molecular dynamics simulations of diblock copolymer surfactants interacting with a lipid bilayer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Srinivas, Goundla; Klein, Michael L.

    2004-01-01

    The interaction of surfactant diblock poly(ethylene oxide)-poly(ethylethylene) copolymers (PEO-PEE) with a lipid bilayer of dimyristoylphosphatidylcholine has been studied by means of coarse-grain molecular dynamics simulations. The effect of the surfactants on the lipid bilayer was studied over a wide range of diblock copolymer concentrations. The simulations show that the hydrophilic PEO chains adopt different structures at low and high concentrations. In particular, the computed density profiles reveal that the PEO chains extend over a longer range from the bilayer surface, with increasing copolymer concentration. The simulated density profiles are in agreement with the scaling law predictions.

  5. Orientations of Diblock Copolymer Microdomains at Different Film Thicknesses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chaikin, Paul; Park, Miri; Harrison, Christopher; Register, Richard; Adamson, Doug

    1996-03-01

    We prepared films with a range of thicknesses (50-300 nm) of a styrene-butadiene diblock copolymer, synthesized to produce a cylindrical morphology. Solutions of different polymer concentrations in toluene were spun onto carbon-coated glass slides. The films were then placed onto a Transmission Electron Microscope (TEM) grid by water lift-off, annealed, stained with osmium tetraoxide, and examined with a TEM. Over a wide range of film thicknesses, the cylinders lie parallel to the substrate. We present preliminary results that show a cylinder orientation perpendicular to the substrate at a thickness of many microdomain spacings. We speculate that the alignment mechanism is different from that found in a previous study of Kraton D1102(M. A. van Dijk and R. van den Berg, Macromolecules 28), 6773 (1995) which shows a perpendicular orientation with spin-coated films, but for a film thickness between one and two microdomain spacings. This work was supported by the NSF under DMR 9400362.

  6. Molecular Simulation of Bicontinuous Phases in Diblock Copolymer Melts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martinez-Veracoechea, Francisco; Escobedo, Fernando

    2008-03-01

    Molecular simulations are used to study the stabilization of different bicontinuous phases in diblock copolymer (DBC) melts. The stabilization approach entails attempting to reduce the packing frustration inside the bicontinuous phases nodes by the addition of a ``filler'' with affinity for the A component. Two different strategies are considered: 1) addition of selective-solvent particles, and 2) addition of homopolymer. Approximate phase boundaries were found via free-energy calculations. A very dissimilar phase behavior is observed upon increasing the amount of the ``additive'' in the two different strategies. While with the first strategy (i.e., addition of selective solvent) we observed the progression Gyroid (G) -> Perforated Lamella -> Lamella -> Reversed-Gyroid. With the second strategy (i.e., addition of homopolymer) we observed the progression of morphologies G -> Cylinder -> Double Diamond (DD) -> Plumber's Nightmare (P). In both the DD and the P phases, the homopolymer concentrates preferentially in the nodes, suggesting the reduction of the nodes' packing frustration. In addition, a novel morphology was observed, wherein cylinders of two different diameters alternate in a tetragonal packing. The contrasting difference in the phase behavior observed for the two strategies is understood as a consequence of the difference in mixing entropy exhibited by the two additives.

  7. Dodecagonal Quasicrystal Phase in a Diblock Copolymer Melt

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bates, Frank; Gillard, Timothy; Lee, Sangwoo

    Recent experiments with low molecular weight asymmetric poly(isoprene- b-lactide) (PI-PLA) diblock copolymers have established an equilibrium Frank-Kasper σ-phase at compositions between 18 and 22 percent by volume PLA, which transforms to a BCC phase followed by disordering with increasing temperature. This presentation will describe synchrotron small-angle x-ray scattering and dynamic mechanical spectroscopy experiments conducted following rapid temperature quenches from the disordered state to temperatures associated with the σ-phase. We document the development of a long-lived dodecagonal quasicrystalline (DQC) phase that transforms with time into the associated quasicrystal approximate σ-phase at a rate that is highly temperature dependent. Remarkably, the DQC does not form from either the σ-phase or BCC state. These finding will be discussed in the context of an apparent spontaneous structural transition that occurs when the disordered melt is supercooled below a threshold temperature coincident with the BCC to σ-phase order-order transition temperature. Support provided by the National Science Foundation (1104368).

  8. Phase Behavior and Kinetics of Diblock Copolymer in Selective Solvent

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spring, Julian; Bansil, Rama

    2012-02-01

    Synchrotron based time-resolved small angle x-ray scattering (SAXS) was used to study the kinetics of the formation of a gyroid phase in solutions of a poly (styrene -isoprene) (SI) diblock copolymer in dimethyl phthalate, a selective solvent for the polystyrene block. Temperature ramp measurements over the range of 70-130C show the transition from hexagonally-packed cylinders (HEX) to Gyroid phase for 75% and 80% (w/v) samples to be 117C and 96C, respectively. Results of temperature jump experiments to different jump depths to examine the kinetics of this transition will be presented. In addition to the Bragg scattering from the ordered phases, we were able to observe the temperature dependence of the diffuse scattering near q=0. The temperature dependence of the correlation length shows a crossover from T near the glass transition for polystyrene to linear in T near the HEX to Gyroid transition. The effect of adding low molecular weight linear homopolymer PS to the samples on the phase behavior will be discussed.

  9. Solubilisation of drugs in micellar solutions of diblock copolymers of ethylene oxide and styrene oxide.

    PubMed

    Crothers, Michael; Ricardo, Nagíla M P S; Heatley, Frank; Nixon, S Keith; Attwood, David; Booth, Colin

    2008-06-24

    The solubilisation of two poorly soluble drugs, furosemide and nabumetone, in micellar solutions of diblock copolymers of ethylene oxide and styrene oxide has been studied at 25 and 37 degrees C and solubilisation capacities compared with published values for griseofulvin and docetaxel. Solubilisation in the micelle core, corrected for the different proportions of poly(styrene oxide) in the copolymers, was similar for all four drugs. The highest solubilisation capacities were found for a copolymer with worm-like micelles. PMID:18417305

  10. Microphase separation in thin films of lamellar forming polydisperse di-block copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    Kumar, Rajeev; Lokitz, Bradley S.; Sides, Scott W.; Chen, Jihua; Heller, William T.; Ankner, John F.; Browning, James F.; Kilbey, II, S. Michael; Sumpter, Bobby G.

    2015-02-03

    Despite the ubiquity of polydispersity in chain lengths of di-block copolymers, its effects on microphase separation in thin films have eluded a clear understanding. In this paper, we have studied effects of polydispersity on the microphase separation in thin films of lamellar forming di-block copolymers using self-consistent field theory (SCFT) and neutron reflectivity experiments. Di-block copolymers containing a polydisperse block of poly(glycidylmethacrylate) (PGMA) connected to a near-monodisperse block poly(2-vinyl-4,4-dimethyl-d6 azlactone) (PVDMA-d6) are considered in this work. Effects of chain length polydispersity, film thickness, substrate–monomer and monomer–monomer interactions on the microphase segregation are studied using SCFT. The theoretical study reveals that in comparison to a film created with monodisperse di-block copolymers, an increase in polydispersity tends to decrease the number of lamellar strata that can be packed in a film of given thickness. This is a direct consequence of an increase in lamellar domain spacing with an increase in polydispersity index. Furthermore, it is shown that polydispersity induces conformational asymmetry and an increase in the polydispersity index leads to an increase in the effective Kuhn segment length of the polydisperse blocks. It is shown that the conformational asymmetry effects, which are entropic in origin and of increasing importance as film thickness decreases, drive the polydisperse blocks to the middle of the films despite favorable substrate interactions. These predictions are verified by results from neutron reflectivity experiments on thin films made from moderately polydisperse PGMA-PVDMA-d6 di-block copolymer deposited on silicon substrates. In conclusion, results from SCFT are used to predict neutron reflectivity profiles, providing a facile and robust route to obtain useful physical insights into the structure of polydisperse diblock copolymers at

  11. Microphase separation in thin films of lamellar forming polydisperse di-block copolymers

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Kumar, Rajeev; Lokitz, Bradley S.; Sides, Scott W.; Chen, Jihua; Heller, William T.; Ankner, John F.; Browning, James F.; Kilbey, II, S. Michael; Sumpter, Bobby G.

    2015-02-03

    Despite the ubiquity of polydispersity in chain lengths of di-block copolymers, its effects on microphase separation in thin films have eluded a clear understanding. In this paper, we have studied effects of polydispersity on the microphase separation in thin films of lamellar forming di-block copolymers using self-consistent field theory (SCFT) and neutron reflectivity experiments. Di-block copolymers containing a polydisperse block of poly(glycidylmethacrylate) (PGMA) connected to a near-monodisperse block poly(2-vinyl-4,4-dimethyl-d6 azlactone) (PVDMA-d6) are considered in this work. Effects of chain length polydispersity, film thickness, substrate–monomer and monomer–monomer interactions on the microphase segregation are studied using SCFT. The theoretical study reveals thatmore » in comparison to a film created with monodisperse di-block copolymers, an increase in polydispersity tends to decrease the number of lamellar strata that can be packed in a film of given thickness. This is a direct consequence of an increase in lamellar domain spacing with an increase in polydispersity index. Furthermore, it is shown that polydispersity induces conformational asymmetry and an increase in the polydispersity index leads to an increase in the effective Kuhn segment length of the polydisperse blocks. It is shown that the conformational asymmetry effects, which are entropic in origin and of increasing importance as film thickness decreases, drive the polydisperse blocks to the middle of the films despite favorable substrate interactions. These predictions are verified by results from neutron reflectivity experiments on thin films made from moderately polydisperse PGMA-PVDMA-d6 di-block copolymer deposited on silicon substrates. In conclusion, results from SCFT are used to predict neutron reflectivity profiles, providing a facile and robust route to obtain useful physical insights into the structure of polydisperse diblock copolymers at interfaces.« less

  12. “Smart” Diblock Copolymers as Templates for Magnetic-Core Gold-Shell Nanoparticle Synthesis

    SciTech Connect

    Nash, Michael A.; Lai, James J.; Hoffman, Allan S.; Yager, Paul; Stayton, Partick S.

    2010-01-13

    We report a new strategy for synthesizing temperature-responsive γ-Fe2O3-core/Au-shell nanoparticles (Au-mNPs) from diblock copolymer micelles. The amphiphilic diblock copolymer chains were synthesized using reversible addition-fragmentation chain-transfer (RAFT) with a thermally responsive “smart” poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) (pNIPAAm) block and an amine-containing poly(N,N-dimethylaminoethylacrylamide) (DMAEAm) block that acted as a reducing agent during gold shell formation. The Au-mNPs reversibly aggregated upon heating the solution above the transition temperature of pNIPAAm, resulting in a red-shifted localized surface plasmon resonance.

  13. Dodecagonal quasicrystalline order in a diblock copolymer melt.

    PubMed

    Gillard, Timothy M; Lee, Sangwoo; Bates, Frank S

    2016-05-10

    We report the discovery of a dodecagonal quasicrystalline state (DDQC) in a sphere (micelle) forming poly(isoprene-b-lactide) (IL) diblock copolymer melt, investigated as a function of time following rapid cooling from above the order-disorder transition temperature (TODT = 66 °C) using small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) measurements. Between TODT and the order-order transition temperature TOOT = 42 °C, an equilibrium body-centered cubic (BCC) structure forms, whereas below TOOT the Frank-Kasper σ phase is the stable morphology. At T < 40 °C the supercooled disordered state evolves into a metastable DDQC that transforms with time to the σ phase. The times required to form the DDQC and σ phases are strongly temperature dependent, requiring several hours and about 2 d at 35 °C and more than 10 and 200 d at 25 °C, respectively. Remarkably, the DDQC forms only from the supercooled disordered state, whereas the σ phase grows directly when the BCC phase is cooled below TOOT and vice versa upon heating. A transition in the rapidly supercooled disordered material, from an ergodic liquid-like arrangement of particles to a nonergodic soft glassy-like solid, occurs below ∼40 °C, coincident with the temperature associated with the formation of the DDQC. We speculate that this stiffening reflects the development of particle clusters with local tetrahedral or icosahedral symmetry that seed growth of the temporally transient DDQC state. This work highlights extraordinary opportunities to uncover the origins and stability of aperiodic order in condensed matter using model block polymers. PMID:27118844

  14. Synthesis and Characterization of Fluorescently Labeled Diblock Copolymers for Location-Specific Measurements of The Glass Transition Temperature

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Christie, Dane; Register, Richard; Priestley, Rodney

    Interfaces play a determinant role in the size dependence of the glass transition temperature (Tg) of polymers confined to nanometric length scales. Interfaces are intrinsic in diblock copolymers, which, depending on their molecular weight and composition, are periodically nanostructured in the bulk. As a result diblock copolymers are model systems for characterizing the effect of interfaces on Tg in bulk nanostructured materials. Investigating the effect of intrinsic interfaces on Tg in diblock copolymers has remained unexplored due to their small periodic length scale. By selectively incorporating trace amounts of a fluorescent probe into a diblock copolymer, Tg can be characterized relative to the diblock copolymer's intrinsic interface using fluorescence spectroscopy. Here, pyrene is selectively incorporated into the poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) block of lamellar forming diblock copolymers of poly(butyl- b-methyl methacrylate) (PBMA-PMMA). Preliminary results show a correlation of Tg as measured by fluorescence with the onset of Tg as measured by calorimetry in labeled homopolymers of PMMA. This result is consistent with previous characterizations of Tg using fluorescence spectroscopy. In selectively labeled diblock copolymers Tg is found to vary systematically depending on the distance of the probe from the PBMA-PMMA interface. We acknowledge funding from the Princeton Center for Complex Materials, a MRSEC supported by NSF Grant DMR 1420541.

  15. A Comparative Study of Interfacial Slip in Polymer Blends with Nanoparticles and Diblock Copolymer Compatibilizers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ortiz, Joseph; Gersappe, Dilip

    2012-02-01

    The interfacial region in polymer blends has been identified as a low viscosity region in which considerable slip can occur when the blend is subjected to shear forces. Here we use Molecular Dynamics simulations to establish and compare the roles that added nanoparticle fillers and diblock copolymers play in modifying the interfacial rheology. By choosing conditions under which the fillers and diblocks are localized, either in the two phases or at the interface, we can look at the interplay between their strengthening capabilities and the change in the interfacial slip behavior. We examine particle size, attraction between the particle and the polymer component, and the amount of filler in the material and compared this to systems including diblock copolymers at the same volume fraction. Our studies are performed, for a variety of shear values, both above and below the point at which the filler particles form a transient network in the blend.

  16. Biocompatibility of poly(epsilon-caprolactone)/poly(ethylene glycol) diblock copolymers with nanophase separation.

    PubMed

    Hsu, Shan-Hui; Tang, Cheng-Ming; Lin, Chu-Chieh

    2004-11-01

    In this study, we prepared diblock copolymers of poly(epsilon-caprolactone) (PCL) and poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) by aluminum alkoxide catalysts. The biological responses to the spin cast surface of different PCL/PEG diblock copolymers were investigated in vitro. Our results showed that surface hydrophilicity improved with the increased PEG segments in diblock copolymers and that bacteria adhesion was inhibited by increased PEG contents. PCL-PEG 23:77 showed nanotopography on the surface. The number of adhered endothelial cells, platelets and monocytes on diblock copolymer surfaces was inhibited in PCL-PEG 77:23 and enhanced in PCL-PEG 23:77. Nevertheless, the platelet and monocyte activation on PCL-PEG 23:77 was reduced. PCL-PEG 23:77 had better cellular response as well as lower degree of platelet and monocyte activation. The current study was the first one to demonstrate that surface nanotopography could influence not only cell adhesion and growth but also platelet and monocyte activation. PMID:15159075

  17. Disorder-to-order transition of diblock copolymers induced by alkyne/azide click chemistry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wei, Xinyu; Chen, Wei; Chen, Xiangji; Emrick, Todd; Russell, Thomas

    2010-03-01

    Alkyne/azide click chemistry is shown as a novel approach to induce the disorder-to-order transition (DOT) of diblock copolymers. A series of poly(ethylene oxide)-b-poly(n-butyl methacrylate-r-propargyl methacrylate) (PEO-b-P(nBMA-r-PgMA)) diblock copolymers were prepared and it is shown that the neat diblock copolymers are in the phase mixed state over the temperature range invetigated. Microphase separation was observed when the diblock copolymers were mixed with rhodamine B azide and annealed at elevated temperature. The azide molecule reacted with the terminal alkyne groups in P(nBMA-r-PgMA) block and attached to polymer backbone, resulting in a significant increase in the nonfavorable interaction between the two blocks. The DOT of these blends was observed both in the bulk and in thin films. The evolution of the morphology during the transition is determined by the mole ratio between alkyne and azide groups, annealing time and temperature, and interfacial energy.

  18. Template-Free Bottom-Up Method for Fabricating Diblock Copolymer Patchy Particles.

    PubMed

    Ye, Xianggui; Li, Zhan-Wei; Sun, Zhao-Yan; Khomami, Bamin

    2016-05-24

    Patchy particles are one of most important building blocks for hierarchical structures because of the discrete patches on their surface. We have demonstrated a convenient, simple, and scalable bottom-up method for fabricating diblock copolymer patchy particles through both experiments and dissipative particle dynamics (DPD) simulations. The experimental method simply involves reducing the solvent quality of the diblock copolymer solution by the slow addition of a nonsolvent. Specifically, the fabrication of diblock copolymer patchy particles begins with a crew-cut soft-core micelle, where the micelle core is significantly swelled by the solvent. With water addition at an extremely slow rate, the crew-cut soft-core micelles first form a larger crew-cut micelle. With further water addition, the corona-forming blocks of the crew-cut micelles begin to aggregate and eventually form well-defined patches. Both experiments and DPD simulations indicate that the number of patches has a very strong dependence on the diblock copolymer composition-the particle has more patches on the surface with a lower volume fraction of patch-forming blocks. Furthermore, particles with more patches have a greater ability to assemble, and particles with fewer patches have a greater ability to merge once assembled. PMID:27109249

  19. Non-equilibrium self-assembly of metals on diblock copolymer templates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lopes, Ward Antone

    Typically, the most perfectly ordered, self-assembled structures correspond to equilibrium states of the system. Here, I show that a high degree of order can arise out of strongly non-equilibrium conditions. I report on a systematic study of non-equilibrium aspects of the decoration of diblock copolymer ultrathin films by evaporated metals. I observe two distinct behaviors for selectively decorating the diblock copolymer: either the metal decorates the diblock copolymer template with nanoparticles or the metal decorates the template with nanowires. Remarkably, these nanowires remain stable under non-equilibrium conditions. I focus on results obtained with evaporated gold and silver on asymmetric polystyrene-b-polymethylmethacrylate (PS-b-PMMA). Gold and a number of other metals (indium, tin, lead, bismuth, aluminum) decorate the diblock copolymer with chains of nanoparticles and don't form wires. Silver forms chains of nanoparticles at low coverage (<30 A), but at high coverage (>100 A), silver forms nanowires. One can understand the formation of the chains of nanoparticles by understanding the equilibrium state of the system (metal + polymer). The silver nanowires, however, are highly non-equilibrium structures. To understand their formation, I modeled the self-assembly of the nanowires with a Monte Carlo simulation. This Monte Carlo simulation qualitatively agrees with the formation of the silver nanowires and their relaxation to equilibrium upon moderate heating.

  20. Self-oscillating AB diblock copolymer developed by post modification strategy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ueki, Takeshi; Onoda, Michika; Tamate, Ryota; Shibayama, Mitsuhiro; Yoshida, Ryo

    2015-06-01

    We prepared AB diblock copolymer composed of hydrophilic poly(ethylene oxide) segment and self-oscillating polymer segment. In the latter segment, ruthenium tris(2,2'-bipyridine) (Ru(bpy)3), a catalyst of the Belousov-Zhabotinsky reaction, is introduced into the polymer architecture based on N-isopropylacrylamide (NIPAAm). The Ru(bpy)3 was introduced into the polymer segment by two methods; (i) direct random copolymerization (DP) of NIPAAm and Ru(bpy)3 vinyl monomer and (ii) post modification (PM) of Ru(bpy)3 with random copolymer of NIPAAm and N-3-aminopropylmethacrylamide. For both the diblock copolymers, a bistable temperature region (the temperature range; ΔTm), where the block copolymer self-assembles into micelle at reduced Ru(bpy)32+ state whereas it breaks-up into individual polymer chain at oxidized Ru(bpy)33+ state, monotonically extends as the composition of the Ru(bpy)3 increases. The ΔTm of the block copolymer prepared by PM is larger than that by DP. The difference in ΔTm is rationalized from the statistical analysis of the arrangement of the Ru(bpy)3 moiety along the self-oscillating segments. By using the PM method, the well-defined AB diblock copolymer having ΔTm (ca. 25 °C) large enough to cause stable self-oscillation can be prepared. The periodic structural transition of the diblock copolymer in a dilute solution ([Polymer] = 0.1 wt. %) is closely investigated in terms of the time-resolved dynamic light scattering technique at constant temperature in the bistable region. A macroscopic viscosity oscillation of a concentrated polymer solution (15 wt. %) coupled with the periodic microphase separation is also demonstrated.

  1. Self-oscillating AB diblock copolymer developed by post modification strategy

    SciTech Connect

    Ueki, Takeshi E-mail: ryo@cross.t.u-tokyo.ac.jp; Onoda, Michika; Tamate, Ryota; Yoshida, Ryo E-mail: ryo@cross.t.u-tokyo.ac.jp; Shibayama, Mitsuhiro

    2015-06-15

    We prepared AB diblock copolymer composed of hydrophilic poly(ethylene oxide) segment and self-oscillating polymer segment. In the latter segment, ruthenium tris(2,2′-bipyridine) (Ru(bpy){sub 3}), a catalyst of the Belousov-Zhabotinsky reaction, is introduced into the polymer architecture based on N-isopropylacrylamide (NIPAAm). The Ru(bpy){sub 3} was introduced into the polymer segment by two methods; (i) direct random copolymerization (DP) of NIPAAm and Ru(bpy){sub 3} vinyl monomer and (ii) post modification (PM) of Ru(bpy){sub 3} with random copolymer of NIPAAm and N-3-aminopropylmethacrylamide. For both the diblock copolymers, a bistable temperature region (the temperature range; ΔT{sub m}), where the block copolymer self-assembles into micelle at reduced Ru(bpy){sub 3}{sup 2+} state whereas it breaks-up into individual polymer chain at oxidized Ru(bpy){sub 3}{sup 3+} state, monotonically extends as the composition of the Ru(bpy){sub 3} increases. The ΔT{sub m} of the block copolymer prepared by PM is larger than that by DP. The difference in ΔT{sub m} is rationalized from the statistical analysis of the arrangement of the Ru(bpy){sub 3} moiety along the self-oscillating segments. By using the PM method, the well-defined AB diblock copolymer having ΔT{sub m} (ca. 25 °C) large enough to cause stable self-oscillation can be prepared. The periodic structural transition of the diblock copolymer in a dilute solution ([Polymer] = 0.1 wt. %) is closely investigated in terms of the time-resolved dynamic light scattering technique at constant temperature in the bistable region. A macroscopic viscosity oscillation of a concentrated polymer solution (15 wt. %) coupled with the periodic microphase separation is also demonstrated.

  2. Microphase separation in thin films of lamellar forming poydisperse di-block copolymers

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Kumar, Rajeev; Kilbey, II, S Michael; Ankner, John Francis; Heller, William T; Chen, Jihua; Sides, Scott; Browning, Jim; Lokitz, Bradley S; Sumpter, Bobby G

    2015-01-01

    Microphase separation in thin films of lamellar forming polydisperse di-block copolymers is studied using self-consistent field theory (SCFT) and neutron reflectivity experiments. Diblock copolymers containing a polydisperse block (poly(glycidylmethacrylate) (PGMA)) connected to a near monodisperse block (poly(4,4-dimethyl-d6-2-vinylazlactone) (PVDMA-d6)) are considered in this work. Effects of chain length polydispersity, film thickness, substrate monomer and monomer-monomer interactions on the microphase segregation are studied using SCFT. The theoretical study reveals that an increase in polydispersity tends to decrease the number of lamellar strata that can be packed in a film of given thickness, in comparison to a film created with monodisperse di-block copolymers.more » This is a direct consequence of an increase in lamellar domain spacing with an increase in polydispersity index. These predictions are verified by comparison with neutron reflectity experiments done on thin films made from moderately polydisperse PGMA-b-PVDMA-d6 di-block copolymer deposited on silicon substrates. Furthermore, it is shown that polydispersity induces conformational asymmetry and an increase in the polydispersity index makes the polydisperse blocks less flexible in comparison with monodisperse blocks. It is shown that conformational asymmetry effects, which are entropic in origin and of increasing importance as film thickness descreases, drive the polydisperse blocks to the middle of the films despite favorable substrate interactions. Prediction of neutron reflectivity profiles using the SCFT provides a facile and robust route for model verification and leads to useful physical insights into behavior of di-block copolymers near interfaces.« less

  3. Cross-Linked Conjugated Polymer Fibrils: Robust Nanowires from Functional Polythiophene Diblock Copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    Hammer, Brenton A. G.; Bokel, Felicia A.; Hayward, Ryan C.; Emrick, Todd

    2011-09-27

    A series of poly(3-hexyl thiophene) (P3HT)-based diblock copolymers were prepared and examined in solution for their assembly into fibrils, and post-assembly cross-linking into robust nanowire structures. P3HT-b-poly(3-methanol thiophene) (P3MT), and P3HT-b-poly(3-aminopropyloxymethyl thiophene) (P3AmT) diblock copolymers were synthesized using Grignard metathesis (GRIM) polymerization. Fibrils formed from solution assembly of these copolymers are thus decorated with hydroxyl and amine functionality, and cross-linking is achieved by reaction of diisocyanates with the hydroxyl and amine groups. A variety of cross-linked structures, characterized by transmission electron microscopy (TEM), were produced by this method, including dense fibrillar sheets, fibril bundles, or predominately individual fibrils, depending on the chosen reaction conditions. In solution, the cross-linked fibrils maintained their characteristic vibronic structure in solvents that would normally disrupt (dissolve) the structures.

  4. Dynamical Studies of Charged Di-Block Copolymer in Different Dielectric Media

    SciTech Connect

    Goswami, Monojoy; Kumar, Rajeev; Sumpter, Bobby G; Mays, Jimmy

    2011-01-01

    Brownian Dynamics simulations are carried out to understand the effect of temperature and dielectric constant of the medium on microphase separation of charged-neutral diblock copolymer systems. For different dielectric media, we focus on the effect of temperature on the morphology and dynamics of model charged diblock copolymers. In this study we examine in detail a system with a partially charged block copolymer consisting of 75% neutral blocks and 25% of charged blocks with 50% degree of ionization. Our investigations show that due to the presence of strong electrostatic interactions between the charged block and counterions, the block copolymermorphologies are rather different than those of their neutral counterpart at low dielectric constant, however at high dielectric constant the neutral diblock behaviors are observed. This article highlights the effect of dielectric constant of two different media on different thermodynamic and dynamic quantities. At low dielectric constant, the morphologies are a direct outcome of the ion-counterion multiplet formation. At high dielectric constant, these charged diblocks behavior resembles that of neutral and weakly charged polymers with sustainable long-range order. Similar behavior has been observed in chain swelling, albeit with small changes in swelling ratio for large changes in polarity of the medium. The results of our simulations agree with recent experimental results and are consistent with recent theoretical predictions of counterion adsorption on flexible polyelectrolytes.

  5. Molecular Dynamics Simulations of Penetrants in Microphase Separated Tapered Diblock Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seo, Youngmi; Brown, Jonathan R.; Hall, Lisa M.

    Tapered AB diblock copolymers contain pure A and B monomer blocks on the ends with a tapered midblock of intermediate composition, providing taper length as an additional tuning parameter to control microphase separation and interfacial behavior. We model the midblock as a statistical linear gradient from pure A to pure B. Recent experiments with salt dissolved in one of microphases show that a certain length of taper increases ion conductivity while the same length of inverse taper lowers conductivity. We perform coarse-grained molecular dynamics simulations of tapered copolymers with monomer sized penetrants, which have preferential interactions with one microphase, to better understand this observation and the general effects of tapering on dynamics. We calculate penetrant diffusion, polymer relaxation times, and other quantities over the range from 0% (diblock) to 100% (full gradient) taper length, with the taper direction either normal or inverse (with the A side of the taper connected to the pure B block). Normal taper results typically lie between those of diblocks and full gradients, while inverse tapers show strong nonmonotonic behavior as a function of taper length. For intermediate length inverse tapers, penetrant and monomer dynamics are significantly slower than those of diblocks or normal tapers, and this relates to the folding of the inverse chains back and forth across the interface. To provide further insight, we also compare to the dynamics of random copolymers of various compositions. Based upon work supported by NSF Grant 1454343.

  6. Surface and interface structure of diblock copolymer brushes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Akgun, Bulent

    The main objective of the work presented in this thesis is to understand the surface and interface structure and dynamics of diblock copolymer brushes (DCBs). DCBs are stimuli-responsive materials and the surface properties of a DCB can be changed from those characteristic of one polymer block to those characteristic of the other one by treating the DCB with a solvent selective for one of its blocks. For this purpose, polystyrene- block-polyacrylate or polyacrylate-block-polystyrene brushes were synthesized using the "grafting from" technique in combination with atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP). In the first part of this project the internal structure of DCBs after the synthesis and surface rearrangement were investigated using neutron reflectivity (NR) and grazing incidence small angle X-ray scattering (GISAXS). It was found that the internal brush structure depends strongly on the synthesis sequence of polymer blocks and the value of chiN. For small values of chiN (chiN ≤ 11), a model of two layers with an interfacial region of finite width provides a good description of the data. The interface width is found to be larger for DCBs which have the polymer block with the lower surface energy synthesized next to the substrate. A three layer model must be used to describe the structure of DCBs of larger chiN values (chiN ≤ 23) and of sufficiently asymmetric composition. The necessity of including a third layer is consistent with the presence of a lateral ordering of some type in the center of the brush, as evidenced by correlation peaks in the GISAXS data. The spacing of the in-plane ordering varies with the thickness of the poly(methyl acrylate) (PMA) block. After a DCB is treated with a selective solvent, Bragg rods appear in the GISAXS pattern. The appearance of Bragg rods indicates the formation of a new 2D structure which has a lateral spacing on the order of the total thickness of the brush. The Bragg rods disappear upon heating to 80

  7. Diblock copolymers with tunable pH transitions for gene delivery

    PubMed Central

    Manganiello, M.J.; Cheng, C.; Convertine, A.J.; Bryers, J.D.; Stayton, P.S.

    2012-01-01

    A series of diblock copolymers containing an endosomal-releasing segment composed of diethylaminoethyl methacrylate (DEAEMA) and butyl methacrylate (BMA) were synthesized via reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization. The materials were designed to condense plasmid DNA (pDNA) through electrostatic interactions with a cationic poly(N,N-dimethylaminoethyl methacrylate) (DMAEMA) first block. The pDMAEMA was employed as a macro chain transfer agent (macroCTA) for the synthesis of a series in which the relative feed ratios of DEAEMA and BMA were systematically varied from 20% to 70% BMA. The resultant diblock copolymers exhibited low polydispersity (PDI ≤ 1.06) with similar molecular weights (Mn = 19.3 – 23.1 kDa). Dynamic light scattering (DLS) measurements in combination with 1H-NMR D2O studies demonstrated that the free copolymers assemble into core-shell micelles at physiological pH. Reduction of the solution pH to values representative of endosomal/lysosomal compartments induced an increase in the net cationic charge of the core through protonation of the DEAEMA residues. This protonation promotes micelle destabilization and exposure of the hydrophobic BMA residues that destabilize biological membranes. The pH value at which this micelle-to-unimer transition occurred was dependent on the hydrophobic content of the copolymer, with higher BMA-containing copolymer compositions exhibiting pH-induced transitions to the membrane-destabilizing state at successively lower pH values. The ability of the diblock copolymers to deliver pDNA was subsequently investigated using a GFP expression vector in two monocyte cell lines. High levels of DNA transfection were observed for the copolymer compositions exhibiting the sharpest pH transitions and membrane destabilizing activities, demonstrating the importance of tuning the endosomal-releasing segment composition. PMID:22169826

  8. Investigation of Universal Behavior in Symmetric Diblock Copolymer Melts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Medapuram, Pavani

    Coarse-grained theories of dense polymer liquids such as block copolymer melts predict a universal dependence of equilibrium properties on a few dimensionless parameters. For symmetric diblock copolymer melts, such theories predict a universal dependence on only chieN and N¯, where chie is an effective interaction parameter, N is the degree of polymerization, and N¯ is a measure of overlap. This thesis focuses on testing the universal behavior hypothesis by comparing results for various properties obtained from different coarse-grained simulation models to each other. Specifically, results from pairs of simulations of different models that have been designed to have matched values of N¯ are compared over a range of values of chiN. The use of vastly different simulation models allows us to cover a vast range of chi eN ≃ 200 - 8000 that includes most of the experimentally relevant range. Properties studied here include collective and single-chain correlations in the disordered phase, block and chain radii of gyration in the disordered phase, the value of chieN at the order-disorder transition (ODT), the free energy per chain, the latent heat of transition, the layer spacing, the composition profile, and compression modulus in the ordered phase. All results strongly support the universal scaling hypothesis, even for rather short chains, confirming that it is indeed possible to give an accurate universal description of simulation models that differ in many details. The underlying universality becomes apparent, however, only if data are analyzed using an adequate estimate of chie, which we obtained by fitting the structure factor S( q) in the disordered state to predictions of the recently developed renormalized one-loop (ROL) theory. The ROL theory is shown to provide an excellent description of the dependence of S(q on chain length and thermodynamic conditions for all models, even for very short chains, if we allow for the existence of a nonlinear dependence of

  9. Functionalized organic nanoparticles from core-crosslinked poly(4-vinylbenzocyclobutene-b-butadiene) diblock copolymer micelles

    SciTech Connect

    Sakellariou, Georgios; Avgeropoulos, Apostolos; Hadjichristidis, Nikos; Mays, Jimmy; Baskaran, Durairaj

    2009-01-01

    Sufface-functionalized polymeric nanoparticles were prepared by: a) self~assembly of poly(4-vinylbenzocyclobutene-b-butadiene) diblock copolymer (PVBCB-b-PB) to form spherical micelles (diameter:15-48 nm) in decane, a selective solvent for PB, b) crosslinking of the PVBCB core through thermal dimerization at 200-240 ~ C, and c) cleavage of the PB corona via ozonolysis and addition of dimethyl sulfide to afford aldehyde-functionalized nanoparticles (diameter: -16-20 nm), along with agglomerated nanoparticles ranging from - 30 to -100 nm in diameter. The characterization of the diblock copolymer precursors. the intermediate micelles and the final surface-functionalized crosslinked nanoparticles was carried alit by a combination of size exclusion chromatography, static and dynamic light scattering, viscometry, thermogravimetric analysis, 1 H NMR and FfIR spectroscopy and transmission electron microscopy.

  10. Strong stretching theory for diblock copolymers in thin films under application of electric fields

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harrach, Michael F.; Heckmann, Marianne; Drossel, Barbara

    2012-07-01

    We investigate the microphases of asymmetric AB diblock copolymers confined to thin films in the strong segregation limit under the application of electric fields. We evaluate the free energy of a given set of possible phases and present phase diagrams for diblock copolymers with a cylindrical bulk phase in dependence of the film thickness and the attraction between the confining walls and the A or B monomers. This is done for different field strengths and volume fractions. We find that with increasing field strength structures show a preference for alignment with the field. The alignment is stronger when the permittivity of the minority monomer is larger than that of the majority monomer. Depending on the strength of the wall potential and the film thickness, the walls can become completely wetted by the minority monomer.

  11. Strong stretching theory for diblock copolymers in thin films under application of electric fields.

    PubMed

    Harrach, Michael F; Heckmann, Marianne; Drossel, Barbara

    2012-07-28

    We investigate the microphases of asymmetric AB diblock copolymers confined to thin films in the strong segregation limit under the application of electric fields. We evaluate the free energy of a given set of possible phases and present phase diagrams for diblock copolymers with a cylindrical bulk phase in dependence of the film thickness and the attraction between the confining walls and the A or B monomers. This is done for different field strengths and volume fractions. We find that with increasing field strength structures show a preference for alignment with the field. The alignment is stronger when the permittivity of the minority monomer is larger than that of the majority monomer. Depending on the strength of the wall potential and the film thickness, the walls can become completely wetted by the minority monomer. PMID:22852656

  12. Highly ordered nanoporous films from supramolecular diblock copolymers with hydrogen-bonding junctions.

    PubMed

    Montarnal, Damien; Delbosc, Nicolas; Chamignon, Cécile; Virolleaud, Marie-Alice; Luo, Yingdong; Hawker, Craig J; Drockenmuller, Eric; Bernard, Julien

    2015-09-14

    We designed efficient precursors that combine complementary associative groups with exceptional binding affinities and thiocarbonylthio moieties enabling precise RAFT polymerization. Well defined PS and PMMA supramolecular polymers with molecular weights up to 30 kg mol(-1) are synthesized and shown to form highly stable supramolecular diblock copolymers (BCPs) when mixed, in non-polar solvents or in the bulk. Hierarchical self-assembly of such supramolecular BCPs by thermal annealing affords morphologies with excellent lateral order, comparable to features expected from covalent diblock copolymer analogues. Simple washing of the resulting materials with protic solvents disrupts the supramolecular association and selectively dissolves one polymer, affording a straightforward process for preparing well-ordered nanoporous materials without resorting to crosslinking or invasive chemical degradations. PMID:26234749

  13. Mechanisms for plasma etching of RRAM SiO2 with diblock copolymer selectivity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ge, Jie; Yang, Yi; Li, Xiao-Ning; Ren, Tianling

    2014-07-01

    To minimize the critical dimension of resistive switching random access memory (RRAM), good anisotropy and selectivity with diblock copolymer are required for silicon dioxide etching. Inductively coupled plasma (ICP) etcher using CHF3/H2 mixture is used for effective etching of SiO2. In this paper, a commercial software CFD-ACE+ was used to simulate reactor scale and feature scale model of SiO2, diblock copolymer and Pt. Etch properties of SiO2 at different chamber conditions were discussed. It was found that etch rate increased at the expense of selectivity as ICP power increased, which was the opposite trend for pressure. Selectivity and anisotropy are achieved at neutral to ion flux ratio 100:1. Moreover, the appropriate overetch time for SiO2 layer to Pt layer was discussed.

  14. Microelectrode Arrays and the Use of PEG-Functionalized Diblock Copolymer Coatings

    PubMed Central

    Uppal, Sakshi; Graaf, Matthew D.; Moeller, Kevin D.

    2014-01-01

    PEG-modified diblock copolymer surfaces have been examined for their compatibility with microelectrode array based analytical methods. The use of PEG-modified polymer surfaces on the arrays was initially problematic because the redox couples used in the experiments were adsorbed by the polymer. This led the current measured by cyclic voltammetry for the redox couple to be unstable and increase with time. However, two key findings allow the experiments to be successful. First, after multiple cyclic voltammograms the current associated with the redox couple does stabilize so that a good baseline current can be established. Second, the rate at which the current stabilizes is consistent every time a particular coated array is used. Hence, multiple analytical experiments can be conducted on an array coated with a PEG-modified diblock copolymer and the data obtained is comparable as long as the data for each experiment is collected at a consistent time point. PMID:25587425

  15. Self-assembly of diblock copolymer confined in an array-structure space

    SciTech Connect

    He, Xuehao E-mail: hjliang@ustc.edu.cn; Zou, Zhixiang; Kan, Di; Liang, Haojun E-mail: hjliang@ustc.edu.cn

    2015-03-14

    The combination of top-down and bottom-up technologies is an effective method to create the novel nanostructures with long range order in the field of advanced materials manufacture. In this work, we employed a polymeric self-consistent field theory to investigate the pattern formation of diblock copolymer in a 2D confinement system designed by filling pillar arrays with various 2D shapes such as squares, rectangles, and triangles. Our simulation shows that in such confinement system, the microphase structure of diblock copolymer strongly depends on the pitch, shape, size, and rotation of the pillar as well as the surface field of confinement. The array structures can not only induce the formation of new phase patterns but also control the location and orientation of pattern structures. Finally, several methods to tune the commensuration and frustration of array-structure confinement are proposed and examined.

  16. Considerations in binding diblock copolymers on hydrophilic alginate beads for providing an immunoprotective membrane

    PubMed Central

    Spasojevic, Milica; Bhujbal, Swapnil; Paredes, Genaro; de Haan, Bart J; Schouten, Arend J; de Vos, Paul

    2014-01-01

    Alginate-based microcapsules are being proposed for treatment of many types of diseases. A major obstacle however in the successes is that these capsules are having large lab-to-lab variations. To make the process more reproducible, we propose to cover the surface of alginate capsules with diblock polymers that can form polymer brushes. In the present study, we describe the stepwise considerations for successful application of diblock copolymer of polyethylene glycol (PEG) and poly-l-lysine (PLL) on the surface of alginate beads. Special procedures had to be designed as alginate beads are hydrophilic and most protocols are designed for hydrophobic biomaterials. The successful attachment of diblock copolymer and the presence of PEG blocks on the surface of the capsules were studied by fluorescence microscopy. Longer time periods, that is, 30–60 min, are required to achieve saturation of the surface. The block lengths influenced the strength of the capsules. Shorter PLL blocks resulted in less stable capsules. Adequate permeability of the capsules was achieved with poly(ethylene glycol)-block-poly(l-lysine hydrochloride) (PEG454-b-PLL100) diblock copolymers. The capsules were a barrier for immunoglobulin G. The PEG454-b-PLL100 capsules have similar mechanical properties as PLL capsules. Minor immune activation of nuclear factor κB in THP-1 monocytes was observed with both PLL and PEG454-b-PLL100 capsules prepared from purified alginate. Our results show that we can successfully apply block copolymers on the surface of hydrophilic alginate beads without interfering with the physicochemical properties. PMID:23853069

  17. Dynamics and order-disorder transitions in bidisperse diblock copolymer blends

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Yueqiang; Li, Xuan; Tang, Ping; Yang, Yuliang

    2011-03-01

    We employ the dynamic extension of self-consistent field theory (DSCFT) to study dynamics and order-disorder transitions (ODT) in AB diblock copolymer binary mixtures of two different monodisperse chain lengths by imitating the dynamic storage modulus G‧ corresponding to any given morphology in the oscillatory shear measurements. The different polydispersity index (PDI) is introduced by binary blending AB diblock copolymers with variations in chain lengths and chain number fractions. The simulation results show that the increase of polydispersity in the minority or symmetric block introduces a decrease in the segregation strength at the ODT, ( χN) ODT, whereas the increase of polydispersity in the majority block results in a decrease, then increase and final decrease again in ( χN) ODT. To the best of our knowledge, our DSCFT simulations, for the first time, predict an increase in ( χN) ODT with the PDI in the majority block, which produces the experimental results. The simulations by previous SCFT, which generally speaking, is capable of describing equilibrium morphologies, however, contradict the experimental data. The polydispersity acquired by properly tuning the chain lengths and number fractions of binary diblock copolymer blends should be a convenient and efficient way to control the microphase separation strength at the ODT.

  18. Postmodification of PS-b-P4VP diblock copolymer membranes by ARGET ATRP.

    PubMed

    Keskin, Damla; Clodt, Juliana I; Hahn, Janina; Abetz, Volker; Filiz, Volkan

    2014-07-29

    The surfaces of polystyrene-block-poly(4-vinylpyridine) (PS-b-P4VP) diblock copolymer membranes were modified in order to obtain polymer brushes by using surface-initiated activators regenerated by electron transfer atom transfer radical polymerization (ARGET ATRP). Isoporous membranes were prepared by the combination of self-assembly of PS-b-P4VP diblock copolymers and the nonsolvent induced phase separation process, also known as "phase inversion". In order to allow further functionalization, the membranes were modified with an ATRP initiator, 2-bromoisobutyryl bromide (BIBB). Therefore, the mussel-inspired poly(dopamine) coating was used to attach BIBB on the membranes surface. In the next step the coated membranes were postmodified by using surface-initiated ARGET ATRP with the hydrophilic monomer 2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate (HEMA). HEMA as a hydrophilic methacrylate was chosen for the modification in order to enhance the membrane characteristics and to obtain a surface with antifouling properties. The surface-initiated ARGET ATRP reaction was carried out using different reaction times and environments. PHEMA could successfully incorporate on the membrane surface as confirmed by attenuated total reflection Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR), (1)H nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy ((1)H NMR), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and contact angle measurements. Furthermore, stability tests against heat and solvents were performed, and water flux was measured for the raw and modified membranes. Stability against heat and hydrophilicity could be increased with this type of modification for diblock copolymer membranes. PMID:24948370

  19. Influence of chain rigidity on the phase behavior of wormlike diblock copolymers.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Ying; Chen, Jeff Z Y

    2013-03-29

    We utilize the wormlike chain model in the framework of the self-consistent field theory to investigate the influence of chain rigidity on the phase diagram of AB diblock copolymers in the full three-dimensional space. We develop an efficient numerical scheme that can be used to calculate the physical properties of ordered microstructures self-assembled from semiflexible block copolymers. The calculation describes the entire physical picture of the phase diagram, crossing from the flexible over to rodlike polymer behavior. PMID:23581386

  20. Grain Rotation in Ion-Complexed Symmetric Diblock Copolymer Thin Films under an Electric Field

    SciTech Connect

    Wang,J.; Leiston-Belanger, J.; Sievert, J.; Russell, T.

    2006-01-01

    In symmetric polystyrene-block-poly(methyl methacrylate) (PS-b-PMMA) diblock copolymer thin films, lithium-PMMA complexes were formed with the addition of lithium chloride (LiCl), significantly increasing both {chi} and dielectric constant. These led to a transition in the kinetic pathway of the orientation of lamellar microdomains under an applied electric field from a disruption and re-formation of the microdomains to a grain rotation mediated by movement of defects. By controlling the number of lithium-PMMA complexes, the microdomain alignment is possibly regulated in PS-b-PMMA copolymer thin films.

  1. Assembly of diblock copolymer grafted nanoparticles in a homopolymer blend matrix

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Estridge, Cara; Jayaraman, Arthi

    2014-03-01

    Hybrid materials comprised of nanoscale fillers embedded in a polymer matrix, also terms polymer nanocomposites, are used in many applications, such as photovoltaics, photonics, automobile parts, where their macroscopic properties are governed by the nanocomposite morphology. The structure and composite morphology is controlled by the interactions of the nanoscale fillers and the polymer matrix. In this talk we show using molecular simulations that functionalization of the nanoparticle surface with AB diblock copolymer grafts is a way to tune the interactions between the grafted particle and the A and B homopolymer blend matrix. Specifically, our work demonstrates that by tailoring the copolymer composition and the copolymer grafting density one can tune the location of the copolymer grafted particles in the matrix, (e.g. within a domain versus interface of two domains). Additionally, in the case where the grafted particles locate themselves at the interface between the two domains, the interfacial tension is reduced below that possible with bare ungrafted particles at the interface.

  2. Self-assembly of 21-arm star-like diblock copolymer in bulk and under cylindrical confinement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Yuci; Li, Weihua; Qiu, Feng; Lin, Zhiqun

    2014-05-01

    Phase behaviors of a 21-arm star-like diblock copolymer in bulk and under confinement were explored by using the pseudo-spectral method of a self-consistent mean field theory. An asymmetrical phase diagram in bulk was constructed by comparing the free energy of different structures. The gyroid phase was found to possess a large phase region when the inner block in the star-like diblock copolymer has a small volume fraction, suggesting the propensity to form the gyroid phase under this condition. Combined with the early experimental work, a scaling law correlating the period of lamellae Dmultiarms formed from multi-arm star-like block copolymers with the number of arms f was identified, that is, Dmultiarms = D/f1/2, where D is the period of a linear diblock copolymer with the same degree of polymerization N as a star-like diblock copolymer. The scaling law was also substantiated by the scaling theory. The bridging fraction of the lamellae formed in a star-like diblock copolymer was nearly 100%, which is advantageous for improving its mechanical properties. Some interesting two-dimensional and three-dimensional morphologies were yielded under the cylindrical confinement, where a 3D double helix was found to be the most stable structure.

  3. Self-assembly of 21-arm star-like diblock copolymer in bulk and under cylindrical confinement.

    PubMed

    Xu, Yuci; Li, Weihua; Qiu, Feng; Lin, Zhiqun

    2014-06-21

    Phase behaviors of a 21-arm star-like diblock copolymer in bulk and under confinement were explored by using the pseudo-spectral method of a self-consistent mean field theory. An asymmetrical phase diagram in bulk was constructed by comparing the free energy of different structures. The gyroid phase was found to possess a large phase region when the inner block in the star-like diblock copolymer has a small volume fraction, suggesting the propensity to form the gyroid phase under this condition. Combined with the early experimental work, a scaling law correlating the period of lamellae D(multiarms) formed from multi-arm star-like block copolymers with the number of arms f was identified, that is, D(multiarms) = D/f(1/2), where D is the period of a linear diblock copolymer with the same degree of polymerization N as a star-like diblock copolymer. The scaling law was also substantiated by the scaling theory. The bridging fraction of the lamellae formed in a star-like diblock copolymer was nearly 100%, which is advantageous for improving its mechanical properties. Some interesting two-dimensional and three-dimensional morphologies were yielded under the cylindrical confinement, where a 3D double helix was found to be the most stable structure. PMID:24830862

  4. Development of a novel endosomolytic diblock copolymer for siRNA delivery

    PubMed Central

    Convertine, Anthony J.; Benoit, Danielle S.W.; Duvall, Craig L.; Hoffman, Allan S.; Stayton, Patrick S.

    2011-01-01

    The gene knockdown activity of small interfering RNA (siRNA) has led to their use as target validation tools and as potential therapeutics for a variety of diseases. The delivery of these double-stranded RNA macromolecules has proven to be challenging, however, and in many cases, is a barrier to their deployment. Here we report the development of a new diblock copolymer family that was designed to enhance the systemic and intracellular delivery of siRNA. These diblock copolymers were synthesized using the controlled reversible addition fragmentation chain transfer polymerization (RAFT) method and are composed of a positively-charged block of dimethylaminoethyl methacrylate (DMAEMA) to mediate siRNA condensation, and a second endosomal-releasing block composed of DMAEMA and propylacrylic acid (PAA) in roughly equimolar ratios, together with butyl methacylate (BMA). A related series of diblock compositions were characterized, with the cationic block kept constant, and with the ratio of DMAEMA and PAA to BMA varied. These carriers became sharply hemolytic at endosomal pH regimes, with increasing hemolytic activity seen as the percentage of BMA in the second block was systematically increased. The diblock copolymers condensed siRNA into 80–250 nm particles with slightly positive Zeta potentials. SiRNA-mediated knockdown of a model protein, namely glyceraldehyde 3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GAPDH), in HeLa cells generally followed the hemolytic activity trends, with the most hydrophobic second block (highest BMA content) exhibiting the best knockdown. This pH-responsive carrier designed to mediate endosomal release shows significant promise for the intracellular delivery of siRNA. PMID:18973780

  5. Development of a novel endosomolytic diblock copolymer for siRNA delivery.

    PubMed

    Convertine, Anthony J; Benoit, Danielle S W; Duvall, Craig L; Hoffman, Allan S; Stayton, Patrick S

    2009-02-10

    The gene knockdown activity of small interfering RNA (siRNA) has led to their use as target validation tools and as potential therapeutics for a variety of diseases. The delivery of these double-stranded RNA macromolecules has proven to be challenging, however, and in many cases, is a barrier to their deployment. Here we report the development of a new diblock copolymer family that was designed to enhance the systemic and intracellular delivery of siRNA. These diblock copolymers were synthesized using the controlled reversible addition fragmentation chain transfer polymerization (RAFT) method and are composed of a positively-charged block of dimethylaminoethyl methacrylate (DMAEMA) to mediate siRNA condensation, and a second endosomal-releasing block composed of DMAEMA and propylacrylic acid (PAA) in roughly equimolar ratios, together with butyl methacylate (BMA). A related series of diblock compositions were characterized, with the cationic block kept constant, and with the ratio of DMAEMA and PAA to BMA varied. These carriers became sharply hemolytic at endosomal pH regimes, with increasing hemolytic activity seen as the percentage of BMA in the second block was systematically increased. The diblock copolymers condensed siRNA into 80-250 nm particles with slightly positive Zeta potentials. SiRNA-mediated knockdown of a model protein, namely glyceraldehyde 3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GAPDH), in HeLa cells generally followed the hemolytic activity trends, with the most hydrophobic second block (highest BMA content) exhibiting the best knockdown. This pH-responsive carrier designed to mediate endosomal release shows significant promise for the intracellular delivery of siRNA. PMID:18973780

  6. Structure of Poly(styrene-b-ethylene-alt-propylene) Diblock Copolymer Micelles in Squalane

    SciTech Connect

    Choi, Soo-Hyung; Bates, Frank S.; Lodge, Timothy P.

    2009-11-04

    The temperature dependence of the micellar structures formed by poly(styrene-b-ethylene-alt-propylene) (SEP) diblock copolymers in squalane, a highly selective solvent for the PEP blocks, has been studied using dynamic light scattering (DLS) and small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS). Four SEP diblock copolymers were prepared by sequential anionic polymerization of styrene and isoprene, followed by hydrogenation of the isoprene blocks, to yield SEP(17-73), SEP(26-66), SEP(36-69), and SEP(42-60), where the numbers indicate block molecular weights in kDa. All four polymers formed well-defined spherical micelles. In dilute solution, DLS provided the temperature-dependent mean hydrodynamic radius, R{sub h}, and its distribution, while detailed fitting of the SAXS profiles gave the core radius, R{sub c}, the equivalent hard sphere radius, R{sub hs}, and an estimate of the aggregation number, N{sub agg}. In general, the micelles became smaller as the critical micelle temperature (CMT) was approached, which was well above the glass transition of the core block. As concentration increased the micelles packed onto body centered cubic lattices for all four copolymers, which underwent order-disorder transitions upon heating near the dilute solution CMTs. The results are discussed in terms of current understanding of block copolymer solution self-assembly, and particular attention is paid to the issue of equilibration, given the high glass transition temperature of the core block.

  7. Aqueous worm gels can be reconstituted from freeze-dried diblock copolymer powder.

    PubMed

    Kocik, M K; Mykhaylyk, O O; Armes, S P

    2014-06-14

    Worm-like diblock copolymer nanoparticles comprising poly(glycerol monomethacrylate) (PGMA) as a stabilizer block and poly(2-hydroxypropyl methacrylate) (PHPMA) as a core-forming block were readily synthesized at 10% w/w solids via aqueous dispersion polymerization at 70 °C using Reversible Addition-Fragmentation chain Transfer (RAFT) chemistry. On cooling to 20 °C, soft transparent free-standing gels are formed due to multiple inter-worm interactions. These aqueous PGMA-PHPMA diblock copolymer worms were freeze-dried, then redispersed in water with cooling to 3-5 °C before warming up to 20 °C; this protocol ensures molecular dissolution of the copolymer chains, which aids formation of a transparent aqueous gel. Rheology, SAXS and TEM studies confirm that such reconstituted gels comprise formed PGMA-PHPMA copolymer worms and they possess essentially the same physical properties determined for the original worm gels prior to freeze-drying. Such worm gel reconstitution is expected to be highly beneficial in the context of various biomedical applications, since it enables worm gels to be readily prepared using a wide range of cell growth media as the continuous aqueous phase. PMID:24733440

  8. Nano- and microstructures of magnetic field-guided maghemite nanoparticles in diblock copolymer films.

    PubMed

    Yao, Yuan; Metwalli, Ezzeldin; Niedermeier, Martin A; Opel, Matthias; Lin, Chen; Ning, Jing; Perlich, Jan; Roth, Stephan V; Müller-Buschbaum, Peter

    2014-04-01

    The control over the alignment of nanoparticles within a block copolymer matrix was investigated for different external magnetic fields with respect to producing well-aligned, highly oriented metal-oxide-polymer nanopatterns. Hybrid films were prepared by solution casting under a range of external magnetic fields. The nano- and microstructure of maghemite nanoparticles within poly(styrene-b-methyl methacrylate) diblock copolymer films as a function of the nanoparticle concentration was studied using optical microscopy, atomic force microscopy, scanning electron microscopy, and grazing incidence small-angle X-ray scattering. Because of a polystyrene (PS) coating, the nanoparticles are incorporated in the PS domains of the diblock copolymer morphology. At higher nanoparticle concentrations, nanoparticle aggregates perturb the block copolymer structure and accumulate at the films surface into wire-shaped stripes. These wire-shaped nanoparticle aggregates form mainly because of the competition between nanoparticle-polymer friction and magnetic dipolar interaction. The magnetic behavior of the hybrid films was probed at different temperatures for two orthogonal directions (with the line-shaped particle aggregates parallel and perpendicular to the magnetic field). The hybrid film systems show superparamagnetic behavior and remarkable shape anisotropy that render them interesting for magnetic applications. PMID:24621173

  9. Response of Semifluorinated-Si Containing Diblock Co-polymers to Solvent Stimuli

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shrestha, Umesh; Perahia, Dvora; Clarson, Stephen

    2010-03-01

    The response of semifluorinated diblock co-polymers to solvents has been studied by neutron reflectometry. Polytrifluoro propyl methyl siloxane -b- polystyrene (FSi-PS) with different volume fraction of the fluorinated block ranging from 0.03 to 0.5 were exposed to water and toluene as stimuli. FSi-PS segregated into layers with the air interface being fluorine rich. Upon exposure to water as stimuli, at small volume fractions of the FSi, no response was observed. Increasing the size of the FSi segments resulted in small interfacial rearrangements however no swelling was observed. The small interfacial changes are sufficient to affect the surface energy and adhesion of the diblocks as desired of a responsive interface. Changing the nature of the stimuli to toluene, which is a good solvent for polystyrene, the diblock co-polymer swelled almost immediately independent on the volume fraction, though the inherent layered structure was retained. The degree of fluorine that resides at the interface in this case depends on the volume fraction and the exposure time. Over all, the study has shown that internal segregation of the blocks and their distinct different affinities to the solvents provide the driving forces for their response.

  10. Microphase separation of short wormlike diblock copolymers with a finite interaction range.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Ying; Zhang, Xinghua; Miao, Bing; Yan, Dadong; Chen, Jeff Z Y

    2016-02-17

    We investigate several structural properties of low-molecular weight AB diblock copolymer melts, focusing on a number of features that substantially deviate from those of high-molecular weight copolymer melts. The study is based on the wormlike chain formalism aided by random phase approximation and self-consistent field theory. We examine the effects that stemmed from both the finite molecular weight and the finite interaction range between unlike AB monomers. The latter yields profound effects on systems consisting of short wormlike block copolymers. The noticeable shift of the order-disorder transition point is discussed. Attention is also paid to the strong-segregation regime, where low molecular weight polymers are subject to finite stretchability. PMID:26822622

  11. New amphiphilic diblock copolymers: surfactant properties and solubilization in their micelles.

    PubMed

    Garnier, Sébastien; Laschewsky, André

    2006-04-25

    Several series of amphiphilic diblock copolymers are investigated as macrosurfactants in comparison to reference low-molar-mass and polymeric surfactants. The various copolymers share poly(butyl acrylate) as a common hydrophobic block but are distinguished by six different hydrophilic blocks (one anionic, one cationic, and four nonionic hydrophilic blocks) with various compositions. Dynamic light scattering experiments indicate the presence of micelles over the whole concentration range from 10(-4) to 10 g x L(-1). Accordingly, the critical micellization concentrations are very low. Still, the surface tension of aqueous solutions of block copolymers decreases slowly but continuously with increasing concentration, without exhibiting a plateau. The longer the hydrophobic block, the shorter the hydrophilic block, and the less hydrophilic the monomer of the hydrophilic block is, the lower the surface tension is. However, the effects are small, and the copolymers reduce the surface tension much less than standard low-molar-mass surfactants. Also, the copolymers foam much less and even act as anti-foaming agents in classical foaming systems composed of standard surfactants. The copolymers stabilize O/W emulsions made of methyl palmitate as equally well as standard surfactants but are less efficient for O/W emulsions made of tributyrine. However, the copolymer micelles exhibit a high solubilization power for hydrophobic dyes, probably at their core-corona interface, in dependence on the initial geometry of the micelles and the composition of the block copolymers. Whereas micelles of copolymers with strongly hydrophilic blocks are stable upon solubilization, solubilization-induced micellar growth is observed for copolymers with moderately hydrophilic blocks. PMID:16618143

  12. Study of polystyrene-poly(ethylene oxide) diblock copolymer monolayers as barriers to protein adsorption

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jogikalmath, Gangadhar

    Protein adsorption resistant surfaces find use in many biomedical applications, such as catheters, dialysis devices and biosensors that involve blood contacting surfaces. To ensure long-term functioning of a device in an environment containing protein, there is a need to produce homogeneous surfaces that are resistant to protein adsorption. A polymer brush covered surface, produced by either physical adsorption or chemical grafting of hydrophilic polymers to surfaces, is one of the approaches used in creating such surfaces. High grafting densities needed to make an effective barrier are usually not realized in chemical grafting/adsorption from solution, due to self-exclusion of surface grafted molecules. In this dissertation polymer brush surfaces formed by chemically grafted PEO molecules and transferred monolayers of PS-b-PEO diblock copolymers are investigated using atomic force microscopy (AFM), surface plasmon resonance (SPR) and surface pressure measurement techniques. An AFM adhesion mapping technique was used to evaluate the surface heterogeneity of chemically modified PEO and transferred diblock copolymer monolayer surfaces. The behavior of PS-b-PEO molecules at the air-water interface was studied using Langmuir trough. The stability of transferred diblock copolymer monolayers was investigated using AFM. Using SPR, protein adsorption to the diblock copolymer layers was investigated as a function of protein size (using HSA and ferritin) as a function of grafting density of PEO in the monolayer. It was seen that a lower density of the PS-b-PEO monolayer was sufficient to prevent ferritin adsorption (larger protein) while a higher density brush layer was required to achieve complete prevention of HSA adsorption to the surface. The effect of mobility of the polymer brush layer on protein adsorption prevention was analyzed using SPR and surface pressure measurements. It was seen that the copolymer monolayer (at the air-buffer interface) rearranged itself to

  13. Supramolecular self-assembly of conjugated diblock copolymers.

    PubMed

    Wang, Hengbin; You, Wei; Jiang, Ping; Yu, Luping; Wang, H Hau

    2004-02-20

    This paper describes the synthesis and characterization of a novel series of copolymers with different lengths of oligo(phenylene vinylene) (OPV) as the rod block, and poly(propylene oxide) as the coil block. Detailed characterization by means of transmission electron microscopy (TEM), atomic force microscopy (AFM), and small-angle neutron scattering (SANS) revealed the strong tendency of these copolymers to self-assemble into cylindrical micelles in solution and as-casted films on a nanometer scale. These micelles have a cylindrical OPV core surrounded by a poly(propylene glycol) (PPG) corona and readily align with each other to form parallel packed structures when mica is used as the substrate. A packing model has been proposed for these cylindrical micelles. PMID:14978825

  14. Supramolecular self-assembly of conjugated diblock copolymers.

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, H.; You, W.; Jiang, P.; Yu, L.; Wang, H. H.; Univ. of Chicago

    2004-02-20

    This paper describes the synthesis and characterization of a novel series of copolymers with different lengths of oligo(phenylene vinylene) (OPV) as the rod block, and poly(propylene oxide) as the coil block. Detailed characterization by means of transmission electron microscopy (TEM), atomic force microscopy (AFM), and small-angle neutron scattering (SANS) revealed the strong tendency of these copolymers to self-assemble into cylindrical micelles in solution and as-casted films on a nanometer scale. These micelles have a cylindrical OPV core surrounded by a poly(propylene glycol) (PPG) corona and readily align with each other to form parallel packed structures when mica is used as the substrate. A packing model has been proposed for these cylindrical micelles.

  15. Super Helix Formation From a Partially Charged Diblock Copolymer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murnen, Hannah K.; Rosales, Adrianne M.; Zuckermann, Ron N.; Segalman, Rachel A.

    2010-03-01

    Polypeptoids, or N-substituted glycines, are a simplified biomimetic platform designed to combine attributes of biological polymers such as sequence specificity with the potential for hierarchical self assembly inherent to synthetic polymers. In this study, the aqueous self-assembly of a monodisperse partially charged amphiphilic diblock copolypeptoid is shown to result in giant super helices with diameters of approximately 615 nm and lengths ranging from 2-20 um. These structures are highly unusual in several ways including their large size, hierarchical structure, and homochirality. Sequence specific chemical modifications coupled with x-ray scattering have led to a model of self-assembly whereby lamellar stacks roll up to produce the large supramolecular structure. In order to understand the effect of charge density and location on the self-assembly process a series of polymers were synthesized pinpointing the charge to specific chain locations and varying the overall amount of available charge. While location of the negative charges is found to have a minimal effect on the self-assembly process, charge density is shown to have an important role. This role is complex, involving both electrostatic and hydrogen bond effects.

  16. Adsorption and aqueous lubricating properties of charged and neutral amphiphilic diblock copolymers at a compliant, hydrophobic interface.

    PubMed

    Røn, Troels; Javakhishvili, Irakli; Jankova, Katja; Hvilsted, Søren; Lee, Seunghwan

    2013-06-25

    We have investigated the adsorption and lubricating properties of neutral and charged amphiphilic diblock copolymers at a hydrophobic polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) interface in an aqueous environment. The diblock copolymers consist of a hydrophilic block of either neutral poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) or negatively charged poly(acrylic acid) (PAA) and of a hydrophobic block of polystyrene (PS) or poly(2-methoxyethyl acrylate) (PMEA), thus generating PEG-b-X or PAA-b-X, where X block is either PS or PMEA. The molecular weight ratios were roughly 1:1 with each block ca. 5 kDa. Comparing the neutral PEG and charged PAA buoyant blocks with all other conditions identical, the former showed superior adsorption onto nonpolar, hydrophobic PDMS surfaces from a neutral aqueous solution. PEG-based copolymers showed substantial adsorption for both PS and PMEA as the anchoring block, whereas PAA-based copolymers showed effective adsorption only when PMEA was employed as the anchoring block. For PAA-b-PS, the poor adsorption properties are chiefly attributed to micellization due to the high interfacial tension between the PS core and water. The poor lubricating properties of PAA-b-PS diblock copolymer for a PDMS-PDMS sliding contact was well correlated with the poor adsorption properties. PAA-b-PMEA copolymers, despite their sizable amount of adsorbed mass, showed insignificant lubricating effects. When the charges of the PAA-b-PMEA diblock copolymers were screened by either adding NaCl to the aqueous solution or by lowering the pH, both the adsorption and lubricity improved. We ascribe the poor adsorption and inferior aqueous lubricating properties of the PAA-based diblock copolymers compared to their PEG-based counterparts mainly to the electrostatic repulsion between charged PAA blocks, hindering the facile formation of the lubricating layer under cyclic tribological stress at the sliding PDMS-PDMS interface. PMID:23725290

  17. Polyelectrolyte Diblock Copolymer Micelles: Small Angle Scattering Estimates of the Charge Ordering in the Coronal Layer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van der Maarel, Johan R. C.

    Amphiphilic diblock copolymers with a polyelectrolyte block comprise two linearly attached moieties: a charged and a hydrophobic chain part. Owing to their specific properties and the increased need of water supported poly- mer materials, these copolymers have found widespread applications from the stabilization of colloidal suspensions, through encapsulation and delivery of bioactive agents, to the control of gelation, lubrication, and flow behavior [1,2]. Besides these technological applications, progress in this area also has implica- tions for biophysics. Polyelectrolyte brushes are a model system for the exter- nal envelope of certain microorganisms (glycocalix) and are thought to play a role in, e.g., cell recognition and cushioning properties of synovial fluid [3, 4]. The hydrophobic attachment provides a mechanism for self-assembling of the copolymers into units of mesoscopic size, which are large compared to the molecular dimensions. Major factors controlling the self-assembled structures are solvent composition, charge, ionic strength, and chemical nature and the respective sizes of the blocks. For ionic diblocks of poly(styrene-block-acrylate) (PS-b-PA) with a polyelectrolyte (PA) block length smaller than the length of the polystyrene (PS) block, a multitude of different "crew-cut" structures has been observed by Eisenberg and coworkers [5-7].

  18. Multiple patterns of diblock copolymer confined in irregular geometries with soft surface

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Ying; Sun, Min-Na; Zhang, Jin-Jun; Pan, Jun-Xing; Guo, Yu-Qi; Wang, Bao-Feng; Wu, Hai-Shun

    2015-12-01

    The different confinement shapes can induce the formation of various interesting and novel morphologies, which might inspire potential applications of materials. In this paper, we study the directed self-assembly of diblock copolymer confined in irregular geometries with a soft surface by using self-consistent field theory. Two types of confinement geometries are considered, namely, one is the concave pore with one groove and the other is the concave pore with two grooves. We obtain more novel and different structures which could not be produced in other two-dimensional (2D) confinements. Comparing these new structures with those obtained in regular square confinement, we find that the range of ordered lamellae is enlarged and the range of disordered structure is narrowed down under the concave pore confinement. We also compare the different structures obtained under the two types of confinement geometries, the results show that the effect of confinement would increase, which might induce the diblock copolymer to form novel structures. We construct the phase diagram as a function of the fraction of B block and the ratio of h/L of the groove. The simulation reveals that the wetting effect of brushes and the shape of confinement geometries play important roles in determining the morphologies of the system. Our results improve the applications in the directed self-assembly of diblock copolymer for fabricating the irregular structures. Project supported by the Specialized Research Fund for the Doctoral Program of Higher Education of China (Grant No. 20121404110004), the Research Foundation for Excellent Talents of Shanxi Provincial Department of Human Resources and Social Security, China, and the Scientific and Technological Innovation Programs of Higher Education Institutions in Shanxi Province, China.

  19. Nanopatterned Protein Films Directed by Ionic Complexation with Water-Soluble Diblock Copolymers

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Bokyung; Lam, Christopher N.; Olsen, Bradley D.

    2014-01-01

    The use of ionic interactions to direct both protein templating and block copolymer self-assembly into nanopatterned films with only aqueous processing conditions is demonstrated using block copolymers containing both thermally responsive and pH responsive blocks. Controlled reversible addition-fragmentation chain-transfer (RAFT) polymerization is employed to synthesize poly(N-isopropylacrylamide-b-2-(dimethylamino)ethyl acrylate) (PNIPAM-b-PDMAEA) diblock copolymers. The pH-dependent ionic complexation between the fluorescent protein, mCherry, and the ionic PDMAEA block is established using dynamic light scattering (DLS) and UV-Vis spectroscopy. DLS shows that the size of the resulting coacervate micelles depends strongly on pH, while UV-Vis spectroscopy shows a correlation between the protein’s absorption maximum and the ionic microenvironment. Zeta potential measurements clearly indicate the ionic nature of the complex-forming interactions. Spin casting was used to prepare nanostructured films from the protein-block copolymer coacervates. After film formation, the lower critical solution temperature (LCST) of the PNIPAM blocks allows the nanomaterial to be effectively immobilized in aqueous environments at physiological temperatures, enabling potential use as a controlled protein release material or polymer matrix for protein immobilization. At pH 9.2 and 7.8, the release rates are at least 10 times faster than that at pH 6.4 due to weaker interaction between protein and PNIPAM-b-PDMAEA (PND) diblock copolymer. Due to the ionic environment in which protein is confined, the majority of the protein (80%) remains active, independent of pH, even after having been dehydrated in vacuum and confined in the films. PMID:24904186

  20. Influence of polydispersity on the isotropic-nematic boundary in melt of semiflexible diblock copolymer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aliev, M. A.

    2015-12-01

    The analytical expressions have been obtained to describe the dependence of spinodal curve at which isotropic state of polydisperse melt of semiflexible diblock copolymer becomes unstable with respect to formation of nematic state on the polydispersity indices of the blocks, parameters of anisotropic interactions, and flexibility of blocks. The flexibility of blocks is taken into account within discrete worm-like chain model, lengths of blocks are assumed to be distributed by the Schulz-Zimm distribution. It is shown that increase of degree of polydispersity of blocks yields the increase of nematic spinodal temperature.

  1. Diblock Polyelectrolytic Copolymers Containing Cationic Iron and Cobalt Sandwich Complexes: Living ROMP Synthesis and Redox Properties.

    PubMed

    Gu, Haibin; Ciganda, Roberto; Hernandez, Ricardo; Castel, Patricia; Zhao, Pengxiang; Ruiz, Jaime; Astruc, Didier

    2016-04-01

    Diblock metallopolymer polyelectrolytes containing the two redox-robust cationic sandwich units [CoCp'Cp](+) and [FeCp'(η(6)-C6 Me6)](+) (Cp = η(5)-C5 H5; Cp' = η(5)-C5H4-) as hexafluorophosphate ([PF6](-)) salts are synthesized by ring-opening metathesis polymerization using Grubbs' third generation catalyst. Their electrochemical properties show full chemical and electrochemical reversibilities allowing fine determination of the copolymer molecular weight using Bard-Anson's electrochemical method by cyclic voltammetry. PMID:26841204

  2. Patterned Diblock Co-Polymer Thin Films as Templates for Advanced Anisotropic Metal Nanostructures.

    PubMed

    Roth, Stephan V; Santoro, Gonzalo; Risch, Johannes F H; Yu, Shun; Schwartzkopf, Matthias; Boese, Torsten; Döhrmann, Ralph; Zhang, Peng; Besner, Bastian; Bremer, Philipp; Rukser, Dieter; Rübhausen, Michael A; Terrill, Nick J; Staniec, Paul A; Yao, Yuan; Metwalli, Ezzeldin; Müller-Buschbaum, Peter

    2015-06-17

    We demonstrate glancing-angle deposition of gold on a nanostructured diblock copolymer, namely polystyrene-block-poly(methyl methacrylate) thin film. Exploiting the selective wetting of gold on the polystyrene block, we are able to fabricate directional hierarchical structures. We prove the asymmetric growth of the gold nanoparticles and are able to extract the different growth laws by in situ scattering methods. The optical anisotropy of these hierarchical hybrid materials is further probed by angular resolved spectroscopic methods. This approach enables us to tailor functional hierarchical layers in nanodevices, such as nanoantennae arrays, organic photovoltaics, and sensor electronics. PMID:25635697

  3. Polymerization-Induced Self-Assembly of Galactose-Functionalized Biocompatible Diblock Copolymers for Intracellular Delivery

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Recent advances in polymer science are enabling substantial progress in nanobiotechnology, particularly in the design of new tools for enhanced understanding of cell biology and for smart drug delivery formulations. Herein, a range of novel galactosylated diblock copolymer nano-objects is prepared directly in concentrated aqueous solution via reversible addition–fragmentation chain transfer polymerization using polymerization-induced self-assembly. The resulting nanospheres, worm-like micelles, or vesicles interact in vitro with galectins as judged by a turbidity assay. In addition, galactosylated vesicles are highly biocompatible and allow intracellular delivery of an encapsulated molecular cargo. PMID:23941545

  4. Polymerization-induced self-assembly of galactose-functionalized biocompatible diblock copolymers for intracellular delivery.

    PubMed

    Ladmiral, Vincent; Semsarilar, Mona; Canton, Irene; Armes, Steven P

    2013-09-11

    Recent advances in polymer science are enabling substantial progress in nanobiotechnology, particularly in the design of new tools for enhanced understanding of cell biology and for smart drug delivery formulations. Herein, a range of novel galactosylated diblock copolymer nano-objects is prepared directly in concentrated aqueous solution via reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer polymerization using polymerization-induced self-assembly. The resulting nanospheres, worm-like micelles, or vesicles interact in vitro with galectins as judged by a turbidity assay. In addition, galactosylated vesicles are highly biocompatible and allow intracellular delivery of an encapsulated molecular cargo. PMID:23941545

  5. Diblock copolymers in bulk and in thin films: Morphology and kinetics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Podariu, Iulia Anca

    In this thesis I numerically study the phase diagram and kinetics of a diblock copolymers melt in both bulk and thin films in the strong segregation limit. I probe various values of the volume fraction, f, of the shorter block of the copolymer chains, spanning the bulk phase diagram for the diblock copolymers from a spherical body-centered cubic (BCC) phase to a hexagonally packed cylindrical (HCP) phase, to a bicontinuous gyroid phase (G), to finally a lamellar phase(L). Finite size and wetting properties of the substrate modify the film morphology by shifting the effective value of the composition in the film. For neutral substrates, the film morphology is shifted toward a smaller relative composition f, while for substrates which prefer the longer blocks of the copolymers, the film morphology is shifted toward a large value of f. A dramatic change in thin film morphology takes place for a small change in external parameters if one chooses the composition f to be at the borderline between two different bulk phases. The next question addressed is that of the control over the thin film structure in the case of a symmetric diblock copolymer films with a thickness smaller than the bulk equilibrium period. These films are cast on either flat or corrugated substrates. The results show that the formation of uniformly sized lateral domains that appear randomly on a flat surface can be controlled by using topographically patterned substrates. Control of lateral pattern fails if the distance between steps is smaller than the lamellar wavelength or the lateral size of the corrugation is larger than the bulk lamellar wavelength. For thin block copolymer (BCP) films on a homogeneous substrate, a fast domain growth exponent has recently been observed in experiments. I have carried out numerical simulations of ordering and domain growth in a two-dimensional system of BCP melts. The model calculations explicitly include viscous, hydrodynamic flow and provide a scaling

  6. Liquid-liquid interfaces of semifluorinated alkane diblock copolymers with water, alkanes, and perfluorinated alkanes.

    SciTech Connect

    Perahia, Dvora, Dr.; Pierce, Flint; Tsige, Mesfin; Grest, Gary Stephen, Dr.

    2008-08-01

    The liquid-liquid interface between semifluorinated alkane diblock copolymers of the form F3C(CF2)n-1-(CH2)m-1CH3 and water, protonated alkanes, and perfluorinated alkanes are studied by fully atomistic molecular dynamics simulations. A modified version of the OPLS-AA (Optimized Parameter for Liquid Simulation All-Atom) force field of Jorgensen et al. has been used to study the interfacial behavior of semifluorinated diblocks. Aqueous interfaces are found to be sharp, with correspondingly large values of the interfacial tension. Due to the reduced hydrophobicity of the protonated block compared to the fluorinated block, hydrogen enhancement is observed at the interface. Water dipoles in the interfacial region are found to be oriented nearly parallel to the liquid-liquid interface. A number of protonated alkanes and perfluorinated alkanes are found to be mutually miscible with the semifluorinated diblocks. For these liquids, interdiffusion follows the expected Fickian behavior, and concentration-dependent diffusivities are determined.

  7. Chain length dependence of non-surface activity and micellization behavior of cationic amphiphilic diblock copolymers.

    PubMed

    Ghosh, Arjun; Yusa, Shin-ichi; Matsuoka, Hideki; Saruwatari, Yoshiyuki

    2014-04-01

    The cationic and anionic amphiphilic diblock copolymers with a critical chain length and block ratio do not adsorb at the air/water interface but form micelles in solution, which is a phenomenon called "non-surface activity". This is primarily due to the high charge density of the block copolymer, which creates a strong image charge effect at the air/water interface preventing adsorption. Very stable micelle formation in bulk solution could also play an important role in the non-surface activity. To further confirm these unique properties, we studied the adsorption and micellization behavior of cationic amphiphilic diblock copolymers of poly(n-butyl acrylate)-b-poly(3-(methacryloyloxy)ethyl)trimethylammonium chloride) (PBA-b-PDMC) with different molecular weights of hydrophobic blocks but with the same ionic block length. These block copolymers were successfully prepared via consecutive reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization. The block copolymer with the shortest hydrophobic block length was surface-active; the solution showed surface tension reduction and foam formation. However, above the critical block ratio, the surface tension of the solution did not decrease with increasing polymer concentration, and there was no foam formation, indicating lack of surface activity. After addition of 0.1 M NaCl, stable foam formation and slight reduction of surface tension were observed, which is reminiscent of the electrostatic nature of the non-surface activity. Fluorescence and dynamic and static light scattering measurements showed that the copolymer with the shortest hydrophobic block did not form micelles, while the block copolymers formed spherical micelles having radii of 25-30 nm. These observations indicate that micelle formation is also important for non-surface activity. Upon addition of NaCl, cmc did not decrease but rather increased as observed for non-surface-active block copolymers previously studied. The micelles formed were

  8. Novel synthesis of cellulose-based diblock copolymer of poly(hydroxyethyl methacrylate) by mechanochemical reaction.

    PubMed

    Ohura, Takeshi; Tsutaki, Yusaku; Sakaguchi, Masato

    2014-01-01

    The mechanical fracture of polymer produces polymeric free radical chain-ends, by which liner block copolymers have been synthesized. A diblock copolymer of microcrystalline cellulose (MCC) and poly 2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate (pHEMA) was produced by the mechanochemical polymerization under vacuum and room temperature. The fraction of pHEMA in MCC-block-pHEMA produced by the mechanochemical polymerization increased up to 21 mol% with increasing fracture time (~6 h). Then, the tacticities of HEMA sequences in MCC-block-pHEMA varied according to the reaction time. In the process of mechanochemical polymerization, cellulose could play the role of a radical polymerization initiator capable of controlling stereoregularity. PMID:24741340

  9. A self-consistent field study of diblock copolymer/charged particle system morphologies for nanofiltration membranes

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang, Bo; Ye, Xianggui; Edwards, Brian J.

    2013-12-28

    A combination of self-consistent field theory and density functional theory was used to examine the stable, 3-dimensional equilibrium morphologies formed by diblock copolymers with a tethered nanoparticle attached either between the two blocks or at the end of one of the blocks. Both neutral and interacting particles were examined, with and without favorable/unfavorable energetic potentials between the particles and the block segments. The phase diagrams of the various systems were constructed, allowing the identification of three types of ordered mesophases composed of lamellae, hexagonally packed cylinders, and spheroids. In particular, we examined the conditions under which the mesophases could be generated wherein the tethered particles were primarily located within the interface between the two blocks of the copolymer. Key factors influencing these properties were determined to be the particle position along the diblock chain, the interaction potentials of the blocks and particles, the block copolymer composition, and molecular weight of the copolymer.

  10. A self-consistent field study of diblock copolymer/charged particle system morphologies for nanofiltration membranes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Bo; Ye, Xianggui; Edwards, Brian J.

    2013-12-01

    A combination of self-consistent field theory and density functional theory was used to examine the stable, 3-dimensional equilibrium morphologies formed by diblock copolymers with a tethered nanoparticle attached either between the two blocks or at the end of one of the blocks. Both neutral and interacting particles were examined, with and without favorable/unfavorable energetic potentials between the particles and the block segments. The phase diagrams of the various systems were constructed, allowing the identification of three types of ordered mesophases composed of lamellae, hexagonally packed cylinders, and spheroids. In particular, we examined the conditions under which the mesophases could be generated wherein the tethered particles were primarily located within the interface between the two blocks of the copolymer. Key factors influencing these properties were determined to be the particle position along the diblock chain, the interaction potentials of the blocks and particles, the block copolymer composition, and molecular weight of the copolymer.

  11. Directed Diblock Copolymer Self-Assembly Using Engineered Topologies To Drive Defect Motion.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ruiz, Ricardo; Black, Charles; Sandstrom, Robert

    2006-03-01

    Self-organizing materials hold great promise for delineating the critical nanometer-scale elements of future integrated circuits. While self assembly provides a pathway to defining sub-lithographic dimensions, its Achilles’ heel lies in minimizing defects. Unlike lithographic processes, self assembly involves optimization of thermodynamic free energy, which can require prohibitively long equilibration times and may never reach pattern perfection. We have begun to address this intrinsic limitation by engineering surfaces to influence the assembly process. In this way we eliminate defects in the critical device areas, while driving unavoidable imperfections to predefined, non-crucial regions. We discuss this approach within the context of lamellar-phase poly(styrene-b-methylmethacrylate) diblock copolymer films, which possess excellent material characteristics for use as lithographic templates. Understanding the dynamics of pattern formation in these materials is crucial to optimizing their performance. We use correlation length measurements of lamellar diblock copolymer domains to extract information about mechanisms of defect annihilation. We also quantify the quality of these self-assembled materials within a framework of resist performance metrics, including resist profile, line-edge roughness, and etch characteristics.

  12. Towards biomimetic scaffolds: anhydrous scaffold fabrication from biodegradable amine-reactive diblock copolymers.

    PubMed

    Hacker, Michael; Tessmar, Jörg; Neubauer, Markus; Blaimer, Andrea; Blunk, Torsten; Göpferich, Achim; Schulz, Michaela B

    2003-11-01

    The development of biomimetic materials and their processing into three-dimensional cell carrying scaffolds is one promising tissue engineering strategy to improve cell adhesion, growth and differentiation on polymeric constructs developing mature and viable tissue. This study was concerned with the fabrication of scaffolds made from amine-reactive diblock copolymers, N-succinimidyl tartrate monoamine poly(ethylene glycol)-block-poly(D,L-lactic acid), which are able to suppress unspecific protein adsorption and to covalently bind proteins or peptides. An appropriate technique for their processing had to be both anhydrous, to avoid hydrolysis of the active ester, and suitable for the generation of interconnected porous structures. Attempts to fabricate scaffolds utilizing hard paraffin microparticles as hexane-extractable porogens failed. Consequently, a technique was developed involving lipid microparticles, which served as biocompatible porogens on which the scaffold forming polymer was precipitated in the porogen extraction media (n-hexane). Porogen melting during the extraction and polymer precipitation step led to an interconnected network of pores. Suitable lipid mixtures and their melting points, extraction conditions (temperature and time) and a low-toxic polymer solvent system were determined for their use in processing diblock copolymers of different molecular weights (22 and 42 kDa) into highly porous off-the-shelf cell carriers ready for easy surface modification towards biomimetic scaffolds. Insulin was employed to demonstrate the principal of instant protein coupling to a prefabricated scaffold. PMID:12922156

  13. Numerical investigation of the contraction of neutral-charged diblock copolymer brushes in electric fields.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yuwei; Li, Haiming; Zhu, Yuejin; Tong, Chaohui

    2016-03-31

    Using self-consistent field theory (SCFT), the contraction of neutral-charged A-B diblock copolymer brushes in electric fields generated by opposite surface charges on two parallel electrodes has been numerically investigated. The diblock copolymer chains were grafted with the free end of the neutral block to one electrode and immersed in a salt-free solution sandwiched between the two electrodes. The numerical results reveal that the charged monomers, A-B joint segment and the tail exhibit bimodal distributions under external electric fields, which are absent for homopolymer polyelectrolyte brushes. The dependences of the relative populations and peak positions of the two modes on various parameters such as block ratio, grafting density, chain length and strength of the applied electric field were systematically examined and the underlining mechanisms were elucidated. It was found in this study that, if the total amount of surface charges on the grafting electrode is no more than that of the counter-ions in the system, overall charge neutrality is generally maintained inside the brushes when including the contribution of surface charges on the grafting electrode. In such a case, the counter-ions expelled from the brushes are highly enriched in the immediate vicinity of the second electrode and an approximate charge balance between these expelled counter-ions and the opposite surface charges on the second electrode is achieved. PMID:26912335

  14. Fluorine effects on morphology and surface energy of diblock copolymer thin films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shrestha, Umesh; Perahia, Dvora; Clarson, Stephen

    2015-03-01

    The interfacial composition and structure formed by the segregation between the incompatible blocks in a diblock copolymer thin film influence the stability and response of the film to external stimuli. Introduction of fluorine enhances the interfacial energy as well as chemical and thermal stability of the polymer film. Here we follow the interfacial structure and response of Si containing diblock co-polymer polytrifluoro propyl methyl siloxane-polystyrene (PTEPMS-PS) with the SiF fraction ranging from 0.03 to 0.5 in surface of the films as a function of temperature and solvent, using atomic force microscopy and contact angle measurement. We found that the tendency of the fluorine to migrate towards surface affects the surface energy while Si in backbone enhances the flexibility of the chains. Thin films prepared from selective good solvent for one of the blocks and good solvent for both blocks formed different structures compared to their melts. Correlation between morphology and volume fraction is dominant above the Tg of the polystyrene whereas below Tg limited effect is observed. NSF DMR 0907390.

  15. Congruent Lamellar-to-Disorder Phase Transitions in Diblock Copolymer-Homopolymer Ternary Blends

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hickey, Robert; Gillard, Timothy; Irwin, Matthew; Lodge, Timothy; Bates, Frank

    Symmetric ternary blends of AB diblock copolymers and the corresponding A and B homopolymers are predicted to be characterized by a multicritical Lifshitz point within mean-field theory. Previous studies have shown that fluctuations destroy the predicted Lifshitz point and lead to a bicontinuous microemulsion (B μE) channel, which separates the lamellar and 2-phase regions in the ternary phase prism. Here, we establish the existence of a line of congruent first-order lamellar-to-disorder transitions when appropriate amounts of poly(cyclohexylethylene) (C) and poly(ethylene) (E) homopolymers are mixed with the corresponding symmetric CE diblock copolymer. We present complimentary optical transmission, small-angle X-ray scattering, transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and rheological results obtained using two experimental protocols: (1) fixing the CE volume fraction and varying the C/E ratio, and (2) setting the C/E ratio at the condition of congruency and varying CE volume fraction from 0 to 1. These results establish a quantitative and facile method for identifying the detailed phase behavior in the vicinity of the B μE, and provide fresh insight into the nature of such mixtures near the nominal Lifshitz conditions. Surprisingly, well-ordered lamellae are revealed by TEM at compositions within 1% of the B μE channel, suggesting a remarkably close approach to the predicted, mean-field unbinding transition. Moreover, the width of the B μE narrows to about 1% under congruent conditions.

  16. Structure and Phase Behavior of Tapered Diblock Copolymers from Self-Consistent Field Theory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brown, Jonathan R.; Sides, Scott W.; Hall, Lisa M.

    2014-03-01

    Tapered block copolymers are like AB diblock copolymers with a ``tapered block'' inserted between the A and B endblocks. This tapered block sequence is random with its average composition changing linearly from pure A to pure B (or B to A for inverse-tapered systems). Depending on the fraction of A monomers and the quantity χN , the blocks microphase separate to form various ordered morphologies. Increasing N (such as to improve mechanical properties) simultaneously affects the microphase separated state. Tapering adds another adjustable parameter, taper length, that can be used to control the microphase separated state. We map the phase diagrams of model tapered and inverse tapered polymers using self-consistent field theory (SCFT). The ordered phases shift to higher χN for tapered systems, and the shift increases as the taper length increases. Inverse tapers shift the phase diagram to even higher χN . Direct tapered systems' phase diagrams are like those of diblocks, but with a larger gyroid region. For large inverse tapered systems, the polymer appears like an ABAB tetrablock, and it folds across the interface or bridges between domains. In this case some of the ordered structures show reversed A and B domains where the majority phase is relatively impure.

  17. Controlled hydrophobic functionalization of natural fibers through self-assembly of amphiphilic diblock copolymer micelles.

    PubMed

    Aarne, Niko; Laine, Janne; Hänninen, Tuomas; Rantanen, Ville; Seitsonen, Jani; Ruokolainen, Janne; Kontturi, Eero

    2013-07-01

    The functionalization of natural fibers is an important task that has recently received considerable attention. We investigated the formation of a hydrophobic layer from amphiphilic diblock copolymer micelles [polystyrene-block-poly(N-methyl-4-vinyl pyridinium iodide)] on natural fibers and on a model surface (mica). A series of micelles were prepared. The micelles were characterized by using cryoscopic TEM and light scattering, and their hydrophobization capability was studied through contact angle measurements, water adsorption, and Raman imaging. Mild heat treatment (130 °C) was used to increase the hydrophobization capability of the micelles. The results showed that the micelles could not hydrophobize a model surface, but could render the natural fibers water repellent both with and without heat treatment. This effect was systematically studied by varying the composition of the constituent blocks. The results showed that the micelle size (and the molecular weight of the constituent diblock copolymers) was the most important parameter, whereas the cationic (hydrophilic) part played only a minor role. We hypothesized that the hydrophobization effect could be attributed to a combination of the micelle size and the shrinkage of the natural fibers upon drying. The shrinking caused the roughness to increase on the fiber surface, which resulted in a rearrangement of the self- assembled layer in the wet state. Consequently, the fibers became hydrophobic through the roughness effects at multiple length scales. Mild heat treatment melted the micelle core and decreased the minimum size necessary for hydrophobization. PMID:23687082

  18. Structure and phase behaviour of diblock copolymer monolayers investigated by means of Monte Carlo simulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Słyk, Edyta; Rżysko, Wojciech; Bryk, Paweł

    2015-10-01

    We use grand canonical Monte Carlo simulation paired with multiple histogram reweighting, hyperparallel tempering and finite size scaling to investigate the structure and phase behaviour of monolayers of diblock copolymers. The chain molecules are arranged on the square lattice and we consider both fully flexible and rod-coil polymer models. In contrast to the majority of previous studies we assume that the interactions between the segments belonging to one of the two subunits are weaker than the remaining segment-segment interactions. We find that when the diblock copolymer is fully flexible, this choice of the interactions leads to a suppression of the ordered phase, and the phase behaviour is analogous to that of the fully flexible homopolymer model. However, when one of the subunits is rigid, we observe the formation of a novel hairpin chessboard ordered structure with fully stretched chains bent in the middle. The topology of the phase diagram depends on the chain length. For shorter chains the global phase diagram features a critical point and a triple point. For longer chains the gas—disordered liquid phase transition is suppressed and only the order-disorder transition remains stable. The resulting phase diagram is of the swan neck type.

  19. Effect of wall potential on morphology of symmetric diblock copolymers in nanotrench

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yoshida, Akihisa; Yoshimoto, Kenji; Ohshima, Masahiro

    2016-06-01

    We have investigated the morphology of symmetric poly(styrene-b-methyl methacrylate) (PS-b-PMMA) diblock copolymers in narrow trenches by performing Monte Carlo (MC) simulations. We considered two types of interactions between the PMMA-attractive trench walls and the PS-b-PMMA. First, an exponential-type wall potential was applied to the PMMA segments to attract them to the wall, which has been widely used for the coarse-grained MC model. In the second case, only the PMMA blocks initially located near the trench wall were adsorbed to the wall. In both cases, the number of the PMMA lamellae was step-wisely increased each time the trench was widened by ∼1.0L 0 (L 0: lamellae period in the bulk). However, due to its considerably thin PMMA layer, the trench width in the second case had ∼0.7L 0 offset from that in the first case. These results imply the importance of interfacial characterization between the diblock copolymers and the trench walls.

  20. Direct synthesis of inverse hexagonally ordered diblock copolymer/polyoxometalate nanocomposite films.

    PubMed

    Lunkenbein, Thomas; Kamperman, Marleen; Li, Zihui; Bojer, Carina; Drechsler, Markus; Förster, Stephan; Wiesner, Ulrich; Müller, Axel H E; Breu, Josef

    2012-08-01

    Nanostructured inverse hexagonal polyoxometalate composite films were cast directly from solution using poly(butadiene-block-2-(dimethylamino)ethyl methacrylate) (PB-b-PDMAEMA) diblock copolymers as structure directing agents for phosphomolybdic acid (H(3)[PMo(12)O(40)], H(3)PMo). H(3)PMo units are selectively incorporated into the PDMAEMA domains due to electrostatic interactions between protonated PDMAEMA and PMo(3-) anions. Long solvophilic PB chains stabilized the PDMAEMA/H(3)PMo aggregates in solution and reliably prevented macrophase separation. The choice of solvent is crucial. It appears that all three components, both blocks of the diblock copolymer as well as H(3)PMo, have to be soluble in the same solvent which turned out to be tetrahydrofuran, THF. Evaporation induced self-assembly resulted in highly ordered inverse hexagonal nanocomposite films as observed from transmission electron microscopy and small-angle X-ray scattering. This one-pot synthesis may represent a generally applicable strategy for integrating polyoxometalates into functional architectures and devices. PMID:22757978

  1. Stable gene transfection mediated by polysulfobetaine/PDMAEMA diblock copolymer in salted medium.

    PubMed

    Dai, Fengying; Liu, Yuan; Wang, Wei; Liu, Wenguang

    2013-01-01

    Cationic polyplexes would aggregate immediately after intravenous injection due to the plasma proteins and high ionic strength. A cationic polyplexes with long-term and salt stability was very important for a systemic gene therapy. In this research, a polysulfobetaine-b-polycation diblock copolymer composed of cationic block of poly(2-(dimethylamino)ethyl methacrylate) (PDMAEMA) and zwtterionic block of poly(propylsulfonate dimethylammonium ethylmethacrylate) (PSPE) was conveniently synthesized by atom transfer radical polymerization method to obtain a cationic polymers with long-term and salt stability. The results of agarose gel electrophoresis and transmission electron microscope indicated that copolymerization of PSPE did not compromise the DNA condensation ability of PDMAEMA, meanwhile exhibiting lower cytotoxicity. The effect of salt on the absorbance and particle size of PDMAEMA100/DNA and PDMAEMA100-PSPEy/DNA complexes was investigated, which showed that PSPE block could increase the resistance of polyplexes against salt-induced aggregation owing to the antielectrolyte effect. In comparison with PDMAEMA homopolymer, PDMAEMA100-PSPEy retained more stable gene transfection in a certain range of salt concentration. The expression of red fluorescence protein (RFP) was evaluated by small animal in vivo fluorescence imaging system and the results showed that the expression of RFP was much higher in the mice injected with PDMAEMA100-PSPE20/pDNA-RFP than with PDMAEMA/pDNA-RFP. Both in vitro and in vivo results suggested that PDMAEMA-PSPE diblock copolymer may be potentially used as a vector for systemic gene therapy. PMID:23565651

  2. Microphase separation patterns in diblock copolymers on curved surfaces using a nonlocal Cahn-Hilliard equation.

    PubMed

    Jeong, Darae; Kim, Junseok

    2015-11-01

    We investigate microphase separation patterns on curved surfaces in three-dimensional space by numerically solving a nonlocal Cahn-Hilliard equation for diblock copolymers. In our model, a curved surface is implicitly represented as the zero level set of a signed distance function. We employ a discrete narrow band grid that neighbors the curved surface. Using the closest point method, we apply a pseudo-Neumann boundary at the boundary of the computational domain. The boundary treatment allows us to replace the Laplace-Beltrami operator by the standard Laplacian operator. In particular, we can apply standard finite difference schemes in order to approximate the nonlocal Cahn-Hilliard equation in the discrete narrow band domain. We employ a type of unconditionally stable scheme, which was introduced by Eyre, and use the Jacobi iterative to solve the resulting implicit discrete system of equations. In addition, we use the minimum number of grid points for the discrete narrow band domain. Therefore, the algorithm is simple and fast. Numerous computational experiments are provided to study microphase separation patterns for diblock copolymers on curved surfaces in three-dimensional space. PMID:26577816

  3. Highly Ordered Structure Formation in RAFT-Synthesized PtBOS-b-P4VP Diblock Copolymers.

    PubMed

    Faber, Martin; Hofman, Anton H; Loos, Katja; Brinke, Gerrit Ten

    2016-06-01

    Linear poly(4-tert-butoxystyrene)-b-poly(4-vinylpyridine) (PtBOS-b-P4VP) diblock copolymers are synthesized using reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer polymerization. The self-assembly of four different PtBOS-b-P4VP diblock copolymers is studied using small-angle X-ray scattering and transmission electron microscopy and a number of interesting observations are made. A tBOS62 -b-4VP28 diblock copolymer with a weight fraction P4VP of 0.21 shows a disordered morphology of P4VP spheres with liquid-like short-range order despite an estimated value of χN of the order of 50. Increasing the length of the 4VP block to tBOS62 -b-4VP199 results in a diblock copolymer with a weight fraction P4VP of 0.66. It forms a remarkably well-ordered lamellar structure. Likewise, a tBOS146 -b-4VP120 diblock copolymer with a weight fraction P4VP of 0.33 forms an extremely well-ordered hexagonal structure of P4VP cylinders. Increasing the P4VP block of this block copolymer to tBOS146 -b-4VP190 with a weight fraction P4VP of 0.44 results in a bicontinuous gyroid morphology despite the estimated strong segregation of χN≅150. These results are discussed in terms of the architectural dissimilarity of the two monomers, characterized by the presence of the large side group of PtBOS, and the previously reported value of the interaction parameter, χ≅0.39, for this polymer pair. PMID:27079547

  4. Poly(trimethylene carbonate)/Poly(malic acid) Amphiphilic Diblock Copolymers as Biocompatible Nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Barouti, Ghislaine; Khalil, Ali; Orione, Clement; Jarnouen, Kathleen; Cammas-Marion, Sandrine; Loyer, Pascal; Guillaume, Sophie M

    2016-02-18

    Amphiphilic polycarbonate-poly(hydroxyalkanoate) diblock copolymers, namely, poly(trimethylene carbonate) (PTMC)-b-poly(β-malic acid) (PMLA), are reported for the first time. The synthetic strategy relies on commercially available catalysts and initiator. The controlled ring-opening polymerization (ROP) of trimethylene carbonate (TMC) catalyzed by the organic guanidine base 1,5,7-triazabicyclo[4.4.0]dec-5-ene (TBD), associated with iPrOH as an initiator, provided iPrO-PTMC-OH, which served as a macroinitiator in the controlled ROP of benzyl β-malolactonate (MLABe) catalyzed by the neodymium triflate salt (Nd(OTf)3). The resulting hydrophobic iPrO-PTMC-b-PMLABe-OH copolymers were then hydrogenolyzed into the parent iPrO-PTMC-b-PMLA-OH copolymers. A range of well-defined copolymers, featuring different sizes of segments (Mn,NMR up to 9300 g mol(-1) ; ÐM =1.28-1.40), were thus isolated in gram quantities, as evidenced by NMR spectroscopy, size exclusion chromatography, thermogravimetric analysis, differential scanning calorimetry, and contact angle analyses. Subsequently, PTMC-b-PMLA copolymers with different hydrophilic weight fractions (11-75 %) self-assembled in phosphate-buffered saline upon nanoprecipitation into well-defined nano-objects with Dh =61-176 nm, a polydispersity index <0.25, and a negative surface charge, as characterized by dynamic light scattering and zeta-potential analyses. In addition, these nanoparticles demonstrated no significant effect on cell viability at low concentrations, and a very low cytotoxicity at high concentrations only for PTMC-b-PMLA copolymers exhibiting hydrophilic fractions over 47 %, thus illustrating the potential of these copolymers as promising nanoparticles. PMID:26791328

  5. Challenges with soft stamps for guiding of diblock copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steinberg, Christian; Gubert, Malte; Papenheim, Marc; Wang, Si; Scheer, Hella-Christin; Zajadacz, Joachim; Zimmer, Klaus

    2015-11-01

    The preparation of nanostructures by guiding the phase separation of a block copolymer (BCP) is an attractive technique to overcome the limitations of conventional lithography. Well-established methods for guiding are to provide a topographical pattern (grapho-epitaxy) or a chemical pattern (chemo-epitaxy) on the substrate before BCP application. This paper reports on an alternative technique, the guiding of the BCP without pre-patterning the substrate, by providing the guiding pattern from the top, by nanoimprint. This approach offers the benefit of a multiple use of the same stamp. In the work reported here, we use an elastomeric stamp and examine capillary force lithography (CFL) with respect to guiding. The processing temperature is chosen high in order to provide fast phase separation. For the control of the surface energy of the substrate, a silane deposition from the gas phase is utilized. The ordering behavior of a lamellar polystyrene-polymethylmethacrylate BCP with CFL is studied. In particular, the issues specific with phase separation in an imprint situation are addressed, the locally differing layer thickness and the fact that two surface energies contribute to the ordering process, the one of the substrate and the one of the stamp. Though further optimization is required to make use of CFL for efficient guiding, the first results reported here indicate the potential of this technique for stamp-induced guiding of BCPs. As it allows a multiple use of the stamp, such guiding is interesting and may replace the time- and cost-consuming pre-patterning of each substrate.

  6. Processing-Dependent Self-Assembly of Protein-Polymer Diblock Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, C. S.; Xu, L.; Olsen, B. D.

    2012-02-01

    Self-assembly of globular protein-polymer diblock copolymers is a novel method for nanopatterning protein-based materials which maintains a high fraction of protein activity as well as the folded protein structure. By subjecting these copolymers to different processing conditions, long range ordering and the fraction of active protein can be controlled. Here, self-assembly of model mCherry-b-poly(N-isopropyl acrylamide) (PNIPAM) block copolymers is induced by water evaporation from dilute aqueous solutions of conjugate material, and followed by solvent annealing of the resulting nanostructures. Different pathways towards self-assembly are accessed by orthogonally manipulating the solvent quality for each block of the copolymer using temperature and pH. Small-angle scattering and transmission electron microscopy show nanostructure depends heavily on PNIPAM coil fraction and solvent annealing condition, with solution self-assembly reflected in the solid state structure under certain conditions. Protein structure is unaffected by the processing pathway, while protein activity levels in the nanodomains depend strongly on processing conditions and can retain up to 80% of the initial activity.

  7. Aqueous Solution Behavior and Metal Nanoparticle Formation in pH-responsive Amphiphilic Diblock Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anastasiadis, Spiros H.; Katsamanis, Vasileios; Afchoudia, Theodora; Vamvakaki, Maria; Sidorov, Stanislav; Kostylev, Maxim; Bronstein, Lyudmila

    2004-03-01

    Dynamic light scattering, pH-metry, 1H-NMR, transmission electron microscopy, and atomic force microscopy have been used to investigate the micellar behavior and metal-nanoparticle formation in poly(2-diethylamino ethylmethacrylate)-block-poly(hexa(ethylene glycol) methacrylate), PDEAEMA-b-PHEGMA, amphiphilic block copolymers in aqueous media. The hydrophobic PDEAEMA block of these copolymers is pH-sensitive: at low pH it can be protonated and it becomes partially or completely hydrophilic leading to molecular solubility whereas at higher pH micelles are formed. The micelle formation is studied as a function of the diblock copolymer characteristics. The micelles consist of a PDEAEMA core and a PHEGMA corona, where the core can dissolve metal compounds due to coordination. Moreover, incorporation of metal compounds (even at low pH) results in self-assembling of the block copolymer molecules and formation of micelles. In all these micellar nanoreactors, metal nanoparticles nucleate and grow upon reduction with sizes in the range of a few nanometers as observed by TEM. These particles exhibit significantly enhanced catalytic properties for hydrogenation and oxidation reactions.

  8. Lyotropic Phase Behavior of Polybutadiene-Poly(ethylene oxide) Diblock Copolymers in Ionic Liquids

    SciTech Connect

    Simone, Peter M.; Lodge, Timothy P.

    2008-08-26

    The lyotropic phase behavior of three poly(1,2-butadiene-b-ethylene oxide) diblock copolymers (PB-PEO) with different monomer volume fractions has been studied in two different ionic liquids, 1-ethyl-3-methylimidazolium bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)imide ([EMI][TFSI]) and 1-butyl-3-methylimidazolium hexafluorophosphate ([BMI][PF{sub 6}]), across the complete concentration range. The ordered microstructures present in the solutions were characterized via small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS). The phase diagrams for the PB-PEO/ionic liquid solutions include regions corresponding to the classical copolymer microstructures: body-centered-cubic lattices of spheres, hexagonally ordered cylinders, and lamellae. Additionally, the phase diagrams also include wide regions of coexisting microstructures and regions apparently corresponding to a disordered network microstructure. The phase behavior of the PB-PEO copolymers in both ionic liquids was comparable to their previously reported aqueous solution behavior. The temperature dependence of the phase diagrams was very modest, indicative of a highly segregated system. The level of solvent selectivity was also investigated via cryogenic transmission electron microscopy (cryo-TEM) on dilute solutions. On the basis of the morphology of the dilute solution copolymer aggregate structures in the ionic liquid solvents, and on the structural length scales of the concentrated solutions, it was concluded that for PB-PEO [BMI][PF{sub 6}] behaves as a more selective solvent than [EMI][TFSI].

  9. Evolution of homopolymer thin-film instability on surface-anchored diblock copolymers varying in composition.

    PubMed

    Cai, Xiao-Jing; Genzer, Jan; Spontak, Richard J

    2014-10-01

    The stability of molecularly thin polymer films deposited on various material substrates is of critical importance to many contemporary nanotechnologies involving functional coatings and nano/micropatterned surfaces, in which case the causes responsible for film destabilization must be fully understood. Previous experimental studies report that factors such as film thickness and polymer molecular weight play significant roles in governing the rate, as well as mechanism, of destabilization. Complementary theoretical predictions reveal that surface heterogeneities can likewise induce (and regulate the process of) destabilization. In this study, we investigate the destabilization rate and mechanism of homopolystyrene (PS) films differing in thickness on top of poly(styrene-b-methyl methacrylate) (SM) diblock copolymer monolayers varying in chemical composition anchored to flat silica-like substrates to examine the effect of surface constitution on PS stability. Copolymers with a long M block consistently promote PS dewetting by nucleation and growth, wherein the linear dewetting rate decreases monotonically with increasing PS molecular weight, film thickness, and S fraction in the SM copolymer. In analogous studies involving a copolymer with a relatively short M block, however, PS dewetting proceeds instead by spinodal dewetting that evolves gradually into nucleation and growth as the film thickness is increased. PMID:25259655

  10. Polymerized ionic liquid diblock copolymers: impact of water/ion clustering on ion conductivity.

    PubMed

    Nykaza, Jacob R; Ye, Yuesheng; Nelson, Rachel L; Jackson, Aaron C; Beyer, Frederick L; Davis, Eric M; Page, Kirt; Sharick, Sharon; Winey, Karen I; Elabd, Yossef A

    2016-01-28

    Herein, we examine the synergistic impact of both ion clustering and block copolymer morphology on ion conductivity in two polymerized ionic liquid (PIL) diblock copolymers with similar chemistries but different side alkyl spacer chain lengths (ethyl versus undecyl). When saturated in liquid water, water/ion clusters were observed only in the PIL block copolymer with longer alkyl side chains (undecyl) as evidenced by both small-angle neutron scattering and intermediate-angle X-ray scattering, i.e., water/ion clusters form within the PIL microdomain under these conditions. The resulting bromide ion conductivity in the undecyl sample was higher than the ethyl sample (14.0 mS cm(-1)versus 6.1 mS cm(-1) at 50 °C in liquid water) even though both samples had the same block copolymer morphology (lamellar) and the undecyl sample had a lower ion exchange capacity (0.9 meq g(-1)versus 1.4 meq g(-1)). No water/ion clusters were observed in either sample under high humidity or dry conditions. The resulting ion conductivity in the undecyl sample with lamellar morphology was significantly higher in the liquid water saturated state compared to the high humidity state (14.0 mS cm(-1)versus 4.2 mS cm(-1)), whereas there was no difference in ion conductivity in the ethyl sample when comparing these two states. These results show that small chemical changes to ion-containing block copolymers can induce water/ion clusters within block copolymer microdomains and this can subsequently have a significant effect on ion transport. PMID:26575014

  11. Phase Behavior of Binary Blends of High Molecular Weight Diblock Copolymers with a Low Molecular Weight Triblock

    SciTech Connect

    Mickiewicz, Rafal A.; Ntoukas, Eleftherios; Avgeropoulos, Apostolos; Thomas, Edwin L.

    2009-08-26

    Binary blends of four different high molecular weight poly(styrene-b-isoprene) (SI) diblock copolymers with a lower molecular weight poly(styrene-b-isoprene-b-styrene) (SIS) triblock copolymer were prepared, and their morphology was characterized by transmission electron microscopy and ultra-small-angle X-ray scattering. All the neat block copolymers have nearly symmetric composition and exhibit the lamellar morphology. The SI diblock copolymers had number-average molecular weights, Mn, in the range 4.4 x 10{sup 5}--1.3 x 10{sup 6} g/mol and volume fractions of poly(styrene), {Phi}{sub PS}, in the range 0.43--0.49, and the SIS triblock had a molecular weight of Mn 6.2 x 10{sup 4} g/mol with {Phi}{sub PS} = 0.41. The high molecular weight diblock copolymers are very strongly segregating, with interaction parameter values, {chi}N, in the range 470--1410. A morphological phase diagram in the parameter space of molecular weight ratio (R = M{sub n}{sup diblock}/1/2M{sub n}{sup triblock}) and blend composition was constructed, with R values in the range between 14 and 43, which are higher than previously reported. The phase diagram revealed a large miscibility gap for the blends, with macrophase separation into two distinct types of microphase-separated domains for weight fractions of SI, w{sub SI} < 0.9, implying virtually no solubility of the much higher molecular weight diblocks in the lower molecular weight triblock. For certain blend compositions, above R 30, morphological transitions from the lamellar to cylindrical and bicontinuous structures were also observed.

  12. Order–Order Morphological Transitions for Dual Stimulus Responsive Diblock Copolymer Vesicles

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    A series of non-ionic poly(glycerol monomethacrylate)–poly(2-hydroxypropyl methacrylate) (PGMA–PHPMA) diblock copolymer vesicles has been prepared by reversible addition–fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) aqueous dispersion polymerization of HPMA at 70 °C at low pH using a carboxylic acid-based chain transfer agent. The degree of polymerization (DP) of the PGMA block was fixed at 43, and the DP of the PHPMA block was systematically varied from 175 to 250 in order to target vesicle phase space. Based on our recent work describing the analogous PGMA–PHPMA diblock copolymer worms [LovettJ. R.; Angew. Chem.2015, 54, 1279−128325418214], such diblock copolymer vesicles were expected to undergo an order–order morphological transition via ionization of the carboxylic acid end-group on switching the solution pH. Indeed, irreversible vesicle-to-sphere and vesicle-to-worm transitions were observed for PHPMA DPs of 175 and 200, respectively, as judged by turbidimetry, transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and dynamic light scattering (DLS) studies. However, such morphological transitions are surprisingly slow, with relatively long time scales (hours) being required at 20 °C. Moreover, no order–order morphological transitions were observed for vesicles comprising longer membrane-forming blocks (e.g., PGMA43–PHPMA225–250) on raising the pH from pH 3.5 to pH 6.0. However, in such cases the application of a dual stimulus comprising the same pH switch immediately followed by cooling from 20 to 5 °C, induces an irreversible vesicle-to-sphere transition. Finally, TEM and DLS studies conducted in the presence of 100 mM KCl demonstrated that the pH-responsive behavior arising from end-group ionization could be suppressed in the presence of added electrolyte. This is because charge screening suppresses the subtle change in the packing parameter required to drive the morphological transition. PMID:26937051

  13. Coil fraction-dependent phase behaviour of a model globular protein–polymer diblock copolymer

    SciTech Connect

    Thomas, Carla S.; Olsen, Bradley D.

    2014-01-01

    The self-assembly of the model globular protein–polymer block copolymer mCherry-b-poly(N-isopropyl acrylamide) is explored across a range of polymer coil fractions from 0.21 to 0.82 to produce a phase diagram for these materials as a function of molecular composition. Overall, four types of morphologies were observed: hexagonally packed cylinders, perforated lamellae, lamellae, and disordered nanostructures. Across all coil fractions and morphologies, a lyotropic re-entrant order–disorder transition in water was observed, with disordered structures below 30 wt% and above 70 wt% and well-ordered morphologies at intermediate concentrations. Solid state samples prepared by solvent evaporation show moderately ordered structures similar to those observed in 60 wt% solutions, suggesting that bulk structures result from kinetic trapping of morphologies which appear at lower concentrations. While highly ordered cylindrical nanostructures are observed around a bioconjugate polymer volume fraction of 0.3 and well-ordered lamellae are seen near a volume fraction of 0.6, materials at lower or higher coil fractions become increasingly disordered. Notable differences between the phase behaviour of globular protein–polymer block copolymers and coil–coil diblock copolymers include the lack of spherical nanostructures at either high or low polymer coil fractions as well as shifted phase boundaries between morphologies which result in an asymmetric phase diagram.

  14. Self-assembled diblock copolymer thin films for the analysis of bacteria-surface interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Shuyan; Komaromy, Andras; Boysen, Reinhard I.; Nicolau, Dan V.; Hearn, Milton T. W.

    2008-12-01

    Self-assembling polymers have recently attracted significant scientific interest, since they spontaneously generate highly ordered structures with high resolution precision, and provide simple, parallel, and cost-effective processes for nanofabrication. Such systems can be achieved with block copolymers which, when produced as thin films, offer great potential as lithographic templates for the fabrication of photonic band-gap materials, ultrahigh-density nanodots or nanowire arrays, memory and capacitor devices, and nano-patterned substrates for biosensors. Although self-assembling block copolymers can form a variety of surface topographies at the nm scale, like spheres, cylinders, and lamellae, their structural steering through the annealing conditions has in many cases not been fully investigated. In the present investigation optimum production conditions for the preparation of nanostructures from poly(styrene)-block-poly(MMA) diblock copolymers have been established to enable the production of surfaces as thin films (<40 nm) on spin-coated silicon wafers either with parallel cylindrical structures or with vertical cylinders. The resulting self-assembling structures were then evaluated by atomic force microscopy. The obtained nanostructured polymers were then incubated with two microbial species, the gram negative E. coli and the gram positive S. aureus to assess their behaviour. The patterns of the thin film surfaces affected the bacterial attachment. Such self assembly processes can be used to create surfaces acting as bacterial attractants or repellents.

  15. Coil fraction-dependent phase behaviour of a model globular protein-polymer diblock copolymer.

    PubMed

    Thomas, Carla S; Olsen, Bradley D

    2014-05-01

    The self-assembly of the model globular protein-polymer block copolymer mCherry-b-poly(N-isopropyl acrylamide) is explored across a range of polymer coil fractions from 0.21 to 0.82 to produce a phase diagram for these materials as a function of molecular composition. Overall, four types of morphologies were observed: hexagonally packed cylinders, perforated lamellae, lamellae, and disordered nanostructures. Across all coil fractions and morphologies, a lyotropic re-entrant order-disorder transition in water was observed, with disordered structures below 30 wt% and above 70 wt% and well-ordered morphologies at intermediate concentrations. Solid state samples prepared by solvent evaporation show moderately ordered structures similar to those observed in 60 wt% solutions, suggesting that bulk structures result from kinetic trapping of morphologies which appear at lower concentrations. While highly ordered cylindrical nanostructures are observed around a bioconjugate polymer volume fraction of 0.3 and well-ordered lamellae are seen near a volume fraction of 0.6, materials at lower or higher coil fractions become increasingly disordered. Notable differences between the phase behaviour of globular protein-polymer block copolymers and coil-coil diblock copolymers include the lack of spherical nanostructures at either high or low polymer coil fractions as well as shifted phase boundaries between morphologies which result in an asymmetric phase diagram. PMID:24695642

  16. Bimetallic PdAg nanoparticle arrays from monolayer films of diblock copolymer micelles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ehret, E.; Beyou, E.; Mamontov, G. V.; Bugrova, T. A.; Prakash, S.; Aouine, M.; Domenichini, B.; Cadete Santos Aires, F. J.

    2015-07-01

    The self-assembly technique provides a highly efficient route to generate well-ordered structures on a nanometer scale. In this paper, well-ordered arrays of PdAg alloy nanoparticles on flat substrates with narrow distributions of particle size (6-7 nm) and interparticle spacing (about 60 nm) were synthesized by the block copolymer micelle approach. A home-made PS-b-P4VP diblock copolymer was prepared to obtain a micellar structure in toluene. Pd and Ag salts were then successfully loaded in the micellar core of the PS-b-P4VP copolymer. A self-assembled monolayer of the loaded micelles was obtained by dipping the flat substrate in the solution. At this stage, the core of the micelles was still loaded with the metal precursor rather than with a metal. Physical and chemical reducing methods were used to reduce the metal salts embedded in the P4VP core into PdAg nanoparticles. HRTEM and EDX indicated that Pd-rich PdAg alloy nanoparticles were synthesized by chemical or physical reduction; UV-visible spectroscopy observations confirmed that metallic PdAg nanoparticles were quickly formed after chemical reduction; XPS measurements revealed that the PdAg alloy nanoparticles were in a metallic state after a short time of exposure to O2 plasma and after hydrazine reduction.

  17. Phase diagram of rod-coil diblock copolymer melts by self-consistent field theory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yan, Dadong; Tang, Jiuzhou; Jiang, Ying; Zhang, Xinghua; Chen, Jeff

    A unified phase diagram is presented for rod-coil diblock copolymer melts in the isotropic phase regime as a function of the asymmetric parameter. The study is based on free-energy calculation, which incorporates three-dimensional spatial variations of the volume fraction with angular dependence. The wormlike-chain model is used in a self-consistent field treatment. Body-centered cubic, A15, hexagonal, gyroid, and lamellar structures where the rod segments are packed inside the convex rod-coil interface are found stable. As the conformational asymmetric parameter increases, the A15 phase region expands and the gyroid phase region reduces. The stability of the structures is analyzed by concepts such as packing frustration, spinodal limit, and interfacial curvature.

  18. Anisotropic Lithium Ion Conductivity in Single-Ion Diblock Copolymer Electrolyte Thin Films.

    PubMed

    Aissou, Karim; Mumtaz, Muhammad; Usluer, Özlem; Pécastaings, Gilles; Portale, Giuseppe; Fleury, Guillaume; Cloutet, Eric; Hadziioannou, Georges

    2016-02-01

    Well-defined single-ion diblock copolymers consisting of a Li-ion conductive poly(styrenesulfonyllithium(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)imide) (PSLiTFSI) block associated with a glassy polystyrene (PS) block have been synthesized via reversible addition fragmentation chain transfer polymerization. Conductivity anisotropy ratio up to 1000 has been achieved from PS-b-PSLiTFSI thin films by comparing Li-ion conductivities of out-of-plane (aligned) and in-plane (antialigned) cylinder morphologies at 40 °C. Blending of PS-b-PSLiTFSI thin films with poly(ethylene oxide) homopolymer (hPEO) enables a substantial improvement of Li-ion transport within aligned cylindrical domains, since hPEO, preferentially located in PSLiTFSI domains, is an excellent lithium-solvating material. Results are also compared with unblended and blended PSLiTFSI homopolymer (hPSLiTFSI) homologues, which reveals that ionic conductivity is improved when thin films are nanostructured. PMID:26618916

  19. Phase Change Nanodot Arrays Fabricated Using a Self-Assembly Diblock Copolymer Approach

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang,Y.; Wong, H.; Raoux, S.; Cha, J.; Rettner, C.; Krupp, L.; Topuria, T.; Milliron, D.; Rice, P.; Jordan-Sweet, J.

    2007-01-01

    Self-assembling diblock copolymer, polystyrene-b-poly-4-vinylpyridine (PS-b-P4VP), was used as the template for fabricating phase change nanostructures. The high density GeSb nanodots were formed by etching into an amorphous GeSb thin film using silica hard mask which was patterned on top of polymer. The nanodot arrays are 15 nm in diameter with 30 nm spacing. This is smaller than most structures obtained by e-beam lithography. Time-resolved x-ray diffraction studies showed that the phase transition occurred at 235 {sup o}C, which is 5 {sup o}C lower than blanket GeSb film but higher than that of Ge{sub 2}Sb{sub 2}Te{sub 5} (150 {sup o}C). GeSb showed good temperature stability for fabrication of small memory devices.

  20. Nanopatterning of diblock copolymer directed self-assembly lithography with wet development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muramatsu, Makoto; Iwashita, Mitsuaki; Kitano, Takahiro; Toshima, Takayuki; Somervell, Mark; Seino, Yuriko; Kawamura, Daisuke; Kanno, Masahiro; Kobayashi, Katsutoshi; Azuma, Tsukasa

    2012-07-01

    A method for using wet development in a directed self-assembly lithography (DSAL) application is reported. For the typical diblock copolymer poly(styrene-block-methyl methacrylate) (PS-b-PMMA), the PMMA area is removed by an oxygen plasma. However, the oxygen plasma has poor selectivity for the PS portion of the block polymer and etches it simultaneously. As a result, the thickness of the residual PS pattern is thinner than desired and creates a challenge for subsequent pattern transfer. A wet development technique is discussed which offers higher selectivity between the PMMA and PS blocks in the assembled pattern. Specifically, a method using a low pressure mercury lamp and conventional tetramethylammonium hydroxide (TMAH, 2.38%) developer is proposed. Using this method, DSA pattern formation is completed in a single track having coating, baking, exposure, and development modules.

  1. Nanopatterning of diblock copolymer directed self-assembly lithography with wet development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muramatsu, Makoto; Iwashita, Mitsuaki; Kitano, Takahiro; Toshima, Takayuki; Seino, Yuriko; Kawamura, Daisuke; Kanno, Masahiro; Kobayashi, Katsutoshi; Azuma, Tsukasa

    2011-04-01

    We report wet development technique for directed self-assembly lithography pattern. For typical diblock copolymer, poly (styrene-block-methyl methacrylate) (PS-b-PMMA), the PMMA area is removed by O2 plasma. However, O2 plasma attack also etches off PS area simultaneously. As a result, the thickness of residual PS pattern is thinner and it causes degradation of PS mask performance. PS thickness loss in the device integration is not desirable as etching mask role. In this work, we applied wet development technique which could be higher selectivity to keep PS film thickness after pattern formation. Especially, we propose the method using low pressure mercury lamp and conventional TMAH (2.38%) as developer. It is expected to accomplish pattern formation in one track with coating, baking, exposure and development.

  2. Diblock-copolymer-coated water- and oil-repellent cotton fabrics.

    PubMed

    Xiong, Dean; Liu, Guojun; Duncan, E J Scott

    2012-05-01

    A diblock copolymer consisting of a sol-gel-forming block and a fluorinated block was used to coat cotton fabrics, yielding textiles that were highly oil- and water-repellent. The coating procedure was simple. At grafted polymer amounts of as low as 1.0 wt %, water, diodomethane, hexadecane, cooking oil, and pump oil all had contact angles surpassing 150° on the coated cotton fabrics and were readily rolled. The liquids were not drawn into the interfiber space by the coated fabrics. Rather, droplets of the nonvolatile liquids such as cooking oil retained their beaded shapes for months with minimal contact angle changes. When forced into water, the coated fabrics trapped an air or plastron layer and this plastron layer was stable for months. In addition, the coating had high stability against simulated washing, and the mechanical properties were essentially identical to those of uncoated cotton fabrics. PMID:22515836

  3. NIL mold manufacturing using self-organized diblock copolymer as patterning template

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kihara, Naoko; Hieda, Hiroyuki; Naito, Katsuyuki

    2008-03-01

    A low-cost fabrication method combining self-organized lithography and nanoimprint is proposed as a possible solution for patterned media production for the memory density beyond 1 Tbpsi. For that purpose, imprint mold equipped with 30-nm-pitch pillar pattern was formed on a Si substrate using diblock copolymer template. Room-temperature imprint and ion milling were applied to avoid thermal and chemical damage to magnetic film during a patterning process. The obtained aspect ratio of the relief by room-temperature imprint was enhanced via pattern-inverse process. After ionmilling treatment, 30-nm-pitch magnetic dot array with 20 nm height was observed. A nickel replica mold was formed by electroforming applying the Si mold as an original master. These results indicate the possibility that nanoimprinting is a practical method for 1 Tbpsi patterned media production.

  4. A Quantitative Study of Tethered Chains in Various Solution Conditions Using Langmuir Diblock Copolymer Monolayers

    SciTech Connect

    Kent, Michael S.

    1999-08-13

    This article summarizes our investigations of tethered chain systems using Langmuir monolayer of polydimethysiloxane-poly styrene (PDMS-PS) diblock copolymers on organic liquids. In this system, the PDMS block adsorbs to the air surface while the PS block dangles into the subphase liquid. The air surface can be made either repulsive or attractive for the tethered PS chain segments by choosing a subphase liquid which has a surface tension lower or greater than that of PS, respectively. The segment profile of the PS block is determined by neutron reflection as a function of the surface density, the molecular weights of the PS and PDMS blocks, and the solution conditions. We cover the range of reduced surface density (SIGMA) characteristic of the large body of data in the literature for systems of chains tethered onto solid surfaces from dilute solution in good or theta solvent conditions (SIGMA < 12). We emphasize quantitative comparisons with analytical profile forms and scaling predictions. We find that the strong-stretching limit invoked in analytical SCF and scaling theories is not valid over this Z range. On the other hand, over a large portion of this range (SIGMA < 5) tethered layers are well described by a renormalization group theory addressing weakly interacting or noninteracting chains. Simultaneous with the study of the profile form, the free energy of the chains is examined through the surface tension. A strong increase in the surface pressure is observed with increasing surface density which determines the maximum surface density which can be achieved. This apparently nonequilibrium effect is attributed to steric interactions and limited lateral interpenetration. This effect may explain several outstanding discrepancies regarding the adsorption of end-functionalized chains and diblock copolymers onto solid surfaces.

  5. Lyotropic Phase Behavior of Poly(ethylene oxide)-Poly(butadiene) Diblock Copolymers: Evolution of the Random Network Morphology

    SciTech Connect

    Jain, Sumeet; Dyrdahl, Mitchell H.E.; Gong, Xiaobo; Scriven, L.E.; Bates, Frank S.

    2008-10-24

    The phase behavior of poly(ethylene oxide)-poly(butadiene) (PEO-PB) diblock copolymers mixed with water was studied using small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS), cryogenic scanning electron microscopy (cryo-SEM), cryogenic transmission electron microscopy (cryo-TEM), and dynamic mechanical spectroscopy. Two sets of diblocks were synthesized by adding different lengths of PEO to hydroxy terminated PB with degrees of polymerization N{sub PB} = 46 and 170. Two-component mixtures were investigated as a function of block composition and copolymer molecular weight, between 1 and 100 wt % polymer content. Melt phase behavior is consistent with established theory and known experimental behavior for diblock copolymers. Various lyotropic liquid crystalline structures, notably lamellae (L), hexagonally packed cylinders (H), and spheres (S) arranged on cubic (body-centered cubic, face-centered cubic) lattices, were documented as a function of water content. At the higher molecular weights (N{sub PB} = 170), a random network phase (N) was identified over a sizable portion of the phase portrait, located between hexagonally ordered cylinders and ordered lamellae. This new structure, along with branching of cylindrical micelles in the dilute limit, bear a striking similarity to experimentally observed and theoretically predicted phase behavior in certain ternary water/oil/surfactant systems. These findings demonstrate that block copolymer surfactants are characterized by at least four structural building blocks -- spheres, cylinders, bilayers, and branched cylinders -- above a threshold molecular weight.

  6. Neutron spin echo investigation of the concentration fluctuation dynamics in melts of diblock copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Montes, H.; Monkenbusch, M.; Willner, L.; Rathgeber, S.; Fetters, L.; Richter, D.

    1999-05-01

    Diblock copolymers in the melt exhibit order-disorder phase transitions (ODT), which are accompanied by strong concentration fluctuations. These transitions are generally described in terms of the random phase approximation (RPA) of Leibler and Fredrickson, which is able to explain small angle scattering results in the neighborhood of the ODT, in particular around the correlation peak at q*. The RPA theory has been extended to include dynamical phenomena, predicting the short time relaxation of the dynamic structure factor in polymeric multicomponent systems. We report small angle neutron scattering and neutron spin echo experiments on polyethylene-block-polyethylethylene (PE-PEE) and poly(ethylene-propylene)-block-polyethylethylene (PEP-PEE) copolymers with molecular weights of 16.500 and 68.000 g/mol, which explore the structure and dynamics of these block copolymers. Studying melts with different hydrogen/deuterium labeling it was possible to observe experimentally the different relaxation modes of such systems separately. In particular the collective relaxation behavior as well as the single chain motion were accessed. The experimental results were quantitatively compared with the RPA predictions, which were based solely on the dynamical properties of the corresponding homopolymers and the static structure factors. The collective dynamics exhibits an unanticipated fast relaxation mode. This mode is most visible at low wave numbers (q⩾q*) but extends to length scales considerably shorter than the radius of gyration. Furthermore, the dynamical RPA yields expressions for the mobilities of chain segments in the block copolymer melt. These combination rules are at variance with the experimental findings for the single chain dynamics, while they hold for the collective response.

  7. Sulfate-based anionic diblock copolymer nanoparticles for efficient occlusion within zinc oxide

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ning, Y.; Fielding, L. A.; Andrews, T. S.; Growney, D. J.; Armes, S. P.

    2015-04-01

    Occlusion of copolymer particles within inorganic crystalline hosts not only provides a model for understanding the crystallisation process, but also may offer a direct route for the preparation of novel nanocomposite materials with emergent properties. In the present paper, a series of new well-defined anionic diblock copolymer nanoparticles are synthesised by polymerisation-induced self-assembly (PISA) via reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) aqueous emulsion polymerisation and then evaluated as crystal habit modifiers for the in situ formation of ZnO in aqueous solution. Systematic studies indicate that both the chemical nature (i.e. whether sulfate-based or carboxylate-based) and the mean degree of polymerisation (DP) of the anionic stabiliser block play vital roles in determining the crystal morphology. In particular, sulfate-functionalised nanoparticles are efficiently incorporated within the ZnO crystals whereas carboxylate-functionalised nanoparticles are excluded, thus anionic character is a necessary but not sufficient condition for successful occlusion. Moreover, the extent of nanoparticle occlusion within the ZnO phase can be as high as 23% by mass depending on the sulfate-based nanoparticle concentration. The optical properties, chemical composition and crystal structure of the resulting nanocomposite crystals are evaluated and an occlusion mechanism is proposed based on the observed evolution of the ZnO morphology in the presence of sulfate-based anionic nanoparticles. Finally, controlled deposition of a 5 nm gold sol onto porous ZnO particles (produced after calcination of the organic nanoparticles) significantly enhances the rate of photocatalytic decomposition of a model rhodamine B dye on exposure to a relatively weak UV source.Occlusion of copolymer particles within inorganic crystalline hosts not only provides a model for understanding the crystallisation process, but also may offer a direct route for the preparation of novel

  8. Thermal composition fluctuations near the isotropic Lifshitz critical point in a ternary mixture of a homopolymer blend and diblock copolymer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schwahn, Dietmar; Mortensen, Kell; Frielinghaus, Henrich; Almdal, Kristoffer; Kielhorn, Lars

    2000-03-01

    We have studied thermal composition fluctuations of a ternary symmetric homopolymer/diblock copolymer system of PEE/PDMS/PEE-PDMS [PEE and PDMS being poly(ethyl ethylene) and poly(dimethyl siloxane), respectively] in its disordered state with small angle neutron scattering for concentration Φ of diblocks up to 15%. The phase diagram shows three characteristic regimes; (1) below the Lifshitz concentration ΦLL≅9%; (2) in the very near vicinity of the Lifshitz concentration; and (3) above ΦLL. In the regime (1) of low diblock content the maximum neutron intensity is obtained at Q=0 and phase separation into macroscopic large domains is observed at low temperatures. With increasing diblock content the thermal fluctuations indicate a crossover from 3d-Ising to isotropic Lifshitz critical behavior with critical exponents of the susceptibility γ=(1.62±0.01) and correlation length ν=(0.99±0.04) appreciably larger than in the 3d-Ising case. In the structure factor this crossover is accompanied by a strong reduction of the Q2 term leading to the dominance of the Q4 term; the restoring force of the thermal fluctuations is strongly reduced as the Q2 term is proportional to the surface energy. Near the Lifshitz critical temperature a further crossover was observed leading to the appreciably larger critical exponents γ=(2.44±0.08) and ν=(1.22±0.08) and a stabilization of the disordered regime visible through a decrease of the phase boundary by nearly 10 K. This crossover is interpreted by the formation of fluctuation induced inhomogeneous diblock distribution at the interface of the thermal fluctuations. (2) In the intermediate regime between 9% and 12% diblock content the Lifshitz line was crossed twice upon increasing the temperature from low to high temperatures; at low and high temperatures the structure factor S(Q) shows diblock character (maximum of S(Q) at Q≠0) while at intermediate temperature blendlike character (maximum of S(Q) at Q=0). At low

  9. Preparation of superhydrophobic films based on the diblock copolymer P(TFEMA-r-Sty)-b-PCEMA.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ganwei; Hu, Jiwen; Tu, Yuanyuan; He, Guping; Li, Fei; Zou, Hailiang; Lin, Shudong; Yang, Gonghua

    2015-07-15

    The diblock copolymer poly[2,2,2-trifluoroethyl methacrylate-r-styrene]-block-poly[(2-cinnamoyloxyethyl methacrylate)] [P(TFEMA-r-Sty)-b-PCEMA] was synthesized via atom transfer radical polymerization. The copolymer underwent self-assembly in TFEMA/CH2Cl2 to form spherical micelles. Photo-cross-linking of the PCEMA domains of these micelles yielded cross-linked nanoparticles. The cross-linked nanoparticles were subsequently cast from CH2Cl2/methanol solvent mixtures at methanol volume fractions of more than 30% to yield rough surfaces bearing small nanobumps on micron-sized aggregations that were connected together to form cross-linked nanoparticles. These surfaces were superhydrophobic with a water contact angle of 161 ± 1° and a sliding angle of 6 ± 1°. Spraying these nanoparticles onto substrates exhibiting microscale roughness, such as filter paper, by a traditional coating technique also created superhydrophobic surfaces. A thin layer of nanoscale spherical protrusions was observed on the microscale fibers of filter paper by scanning electron microscopy. The coated filter paper samples exhibited a water contact angle and a sliding angle of 153 ± 1° and 9 ± 1°, respectively. PMID:26145165

  10. Tuning phase structures of a symmetrical diblock copolymer with a patterned electric field.

    PubMed

    Kan, Di; He, Xuehao

    2016-05-11

    Electric fields can induce the orientation of the phase interfaces of block copolymers and provide a potential method to tune polymer phase structures for nanomaterial manufacture. In this work, we applied self-consistent field theory to study the self-assembly of a diblock copolymer confined between two parallel neutral substrates on which a set of electrodes was imposed to form a patterned electric field. The results showed that an alternatively distributed electric field can induce the formation of a parallel lamellar phase structure, which exists stably only in the system with selective substrates. The phase structure was proved to be sensitive to the characteristics of the electric field distribution, such as the strength of the electric field, the size and position of the electrodes, and the corresponding phase diagram was calculated in detail. The transition pathway of the phase structure from the perpendicular layered phase to the parallel layered phase was further analysed using the minimum energy path method. It is shown that the path and the active energy barrier of the phase transition depend on the electric field strength. Compound electric field patterns that can be designed to control the formation of novel and complex microphase structures were also examined. PMID:27102422

  11. Phase behavior of diblock copolymer/star-shaped polymer thin film mixtures.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Junnan; Sakellariou, Georgios; Green, Peter F

    2016-05-01

    We investigated the phase behavior of thin film, thickness h≈ 100 nm, mixtures of a polystyrene-b-poly(2-vinylpyridine) (PS-b-P2VP) diblock copolymer with star-shaped polystyrene (SPS) molecules of varying functionalities f, where 4 ≤f≤ 64, and molecular weights per arm Marm. The miscibility of the system and the surface composition varied appreciably with Marm and f. For large values of Marm, regardless of f, the miscibility of the system was qualitatively similar to that of linear chain PS/PS-b-P2VP mixtures - the copolymer chains aggregate to form micelles, each composed of an inner P2VP core and PS corona, which preferentially segregate to the free surface. On the other hand, for large f and small Marm, SPS molecules preferentially resided at the free surface. Moreover, blends containing SPS molecules with the highest values of f and lowest values of Marm were phase separated. These observations are rationalized in terms of competing entropic interactions and the dependence of the surface tension of the star-shaped molecules on Marm and f. PMID:27074835

  12. Monte Carlo Study of Degenerate Behavior of AB Diblock Copolymer/Nanoparticle under Cylindrical Confinement.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yingying; Han, Yuanyuan; Cui, Jie; Jiang, Wei; Sun, Yingchun

    2016-08-23

    Degenerate behavior (i.e., forming different self-assembled structures for a given block copolymer (BCP) under the same confinement) commonly exists in various confined systems. Understanding degenerate behavior is crucial for precise control over the structures formed by self-assembly systems under confinement. In this study, the degenerate behavior of a self-assembled AB diblock copolymer/nanoparticle (NP) mixture in a cylindrical pore is studied using Monte Carlo simulation. We find that the degenerate behavior of such a mixture depends on the introduction of the NP. Under different pore sizes, four typical degenerate structures [i.e., single helices (S-helices), double helices (D-helices), parallel cylinders, and stacked toroids] can be obtained if the NP content is zero. However, when the NP content in the mixture is increased, it is found that the number of degenerate structures decreases, that is, only blocky structures can be obtained in the case of high NP content. Moreover, the probability of forming S-helices decreases, whereas the probability of forming D-helices increases with increase in the NP content. Analysis of the interactive enthalpy densities and the chain conformation of the systems indicates that entropy plays an important role in the degenerate structure formation. This study provides some new insights into the degenerate behavior of a BCP/NP mixture under confinement, which can offer a theoretical reference for further experiments. PMID:27459708

  13. Order-Disorder Transition (ODT) in Micelle-Forming A-B/A and A-B/B Diblock Copolymer/Homopolymer Blends

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dormidontova, Elena E.; Lodge, Timothy P.

    2002-03-01

    In the framework of strong segregation (Semenov-like) theory we consider the phase behavior and properties of solvent-free diblock copolymer/homopolymer blends. We consider the case in which the homopolymer is similar to either the A or B block of diblock copolymer. Addition of a homopolymer that is similar to the corona-forming block of the diblock copolymer decreases the ODT temperature and increases the temperature window corresponding to the stable disordered micelle state. Above some critical homopolymer concentration no ordered micelle state can be found. In the case that the added homopolymer is similar to the core-forming block macrophase separation plays an important role. In the framework of standard Flory-Huggins theory macrophase separation into ordered or disordered diblock copolymer micelle phase and pure homopolymer phase seems to be preferable to co-micellization of the homopolymers and diblock copolymers. In reality kinetic factors as well as surface interactions between co-existing phases can produce a metastable phase of ordered or disordered micelles formed by both diblock and homopolymers. We discuss the order-disorder and co-micellisation transitions for this case, the latter often having an anomalous character (very large initial miceller size) when the fraction of homopolymers is not too small.

  14. Diblock copolymers of polystyrene-b-poly(1,3-cyclohexadiene) exhibiting unique three-phase microdomain morphologies

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Misichronis, Konstantinos; Chen, Jihua; Kahk, Jong K.; Imel, Adam; Dadmun, Mark; Hong, Kunlun; Hadjichristidis, Nikos; Mays, Jimmy W.; Avgeropoulos, Apostolos

    2016-03-29

    Here, the synthesis and molecular characterization of a series of conformationally asymmetric polystyrene-block-poly(1,3-cyclohexadiene) (PS-b-PCHD) diblock copolymers (PCHD: ~90% 1,4 and ~10% 1,2), by sequential anionic copolymerization high vacuum techniques, is reported. A wide range of volume fractions (0.27 ≤ ΦPS ≤ 0.91) was studied by transmission electron microscopy and small-angle X-ray scattering in order to explore in detail the microphase separation behavior of these flexible/semiflexible diblock copolymers. Unusual morphologies, consisting of PCHD core(PCHD-1,4)–shell(PCHD-1,2) cylinders in PS matrix and three-phase (PS, PCHD-1,4, PCHD-1,2) four-layer lamellae, were observed suggesting that the chain stiffness of the PCHD block and the strong dependence ofmore » the interaction parameter χ on the PCHD microstructures are important factors for the formation of this unusual microphase separation behavior in PS-b-PCHD diblock copolymers. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J. Polym. Sci., Part B: Polym. Phys. 2016, 54, 1564–1572« less

  15. Self-Assembly of Novel Amphiphilic 21-Arm, Star-Like Coil-Rod Diblock Copolymers at Interfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Zhiqun; Zhao, Lei; Pang, Xinchang; Feng, Chaowei

    2012-02-01

    A series of novel amphiphilic 21-arm, star-like diblock copolymers, poly(acrylic acid)-b-poly(3-hexylthiophene) (PAA-b-P3HT) based on β-cyclodextrin (β-CD) with well defined molecular architectures and ratio of two chemically distinct blocks were prepared, for the first time, via a combination of quasi-living Grignard metathesis method (GRIM), click reaction, and atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP). The star-like PAA-b-P3HT diblock copolymers consist of hydrophilic coil-like PAA cores and hydrophobic rod-like P3HT shells with narrow molecular weight distribution and controllable molecular weight of each block. Owing to the compact structure, the amphiphilic star-like PAA-b-P3HT formed a unimolecular micelle. Vesicles based on these novel amphiphilic star-like, coil-rod diblock copolymers were readily produced at the oil/water interface by crosslinking hydrophilic coil-like PAA cores with a bifunctional crosslinker, ethylenediamine. They also self-assembled into a nanotubular structure at the air/water interface.

  16. Worm-like micelles in water solutions of 1, 4 poly (1, 3-butadiene)-polyethylene oxide diblock copolymer.

    PubMed

    Arenas-Gómez, Brisa; Vinceković, Marko; Garza, Cristina; Castillo, Rolando

    2014-06-01

    The main purpose of this study is to determine for the first time the structure of the self-assembled aggregates in the system made of 1,4 poly(1,3-butadiene)-polyethylene oxide diblock copolymer (IUPAC name: poly(but-2-ene-1,4-diyl)-block-polyoxyethylene) and water, and the rheological behavior of the solution. The degree of polymerization of the polybutadiene and polyethylene oxide blocks is 37 and 45, respectively. The diblock copolymer concentration was limited to be ≤2.5 wt% to avoid phase separation. Small X-ray scattering revealed that the diblock copolymer self-assembles in worm-like micelles with a diameter of ∼ 12 nm. This system does not closely follow the rheological behavior of worm-like micelle solutions made of typical surfactants. The system steadily shear thins reaching very low viscosity values at large shear rates, however there are not shear-thickening peaks. In thixotropic loops, the micellar solution does not present hysteresis. The viscoelastic spectra do not follow the Maxwell model at low and intermediate frequencies. This uncommon behavior for a worm-like micellar system is explained by the slow dynamics of the self-assembly. The extremely high hydrophobicity of the polybutadiene block does not allow any micellar rearrangement. PMID:24965154

  17. Influence of composition fluctuations on the linear viscoelastic properties of symmetric diblock copolymers near the order-disorder transition

    SciTech Connect

    Hickey, Robert J.; Gillard, Timothy M.; Lodge, Timothy P.; Bates, Frank S.

    2015-08-28

    Rheological evidence of composition fluctuations in disordered diblock copolymers near the order disorder transition (ODT) has been documented in the literature over the past three decades, characterized by a failure of time–temperature superposition (tTS) to reduce linear dynamic mechanical spectroscopy (DMS) data in the terminal viscoelastic regime to a temperature-independent form. However, for some materials, most notably poly(styrene-b-isoprene) (PS–PI), no signature of these rheological features has been found. We present small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) results on symmetric poly(cyclohexylethylene-b-ethylene) (PCHE–PE) diblock copolymers that confirm the presence of fluctuations in the disordered state and DMS measurements that also show no sign of the features ascribed to composition fluctuations. Assessment of DMS results published on five different diblock copolymer systems leads us to conclude that the effects of composition fluctuations can be masked by highly asymmetric block dynamics, thereby resolving a long-standing disagreement in the literature and reinforcing the importance of mechanical contrast in understanding the dynamics of ordered and disordered block polymers.

  18. Probing the Effect of Molecular Nonuniformity in Directed Self-Assembly of Diblock Copolymers in Nanoconfined Space.

    PubMed

    Pitet, Louis M; Alexander-Moonen, Els; Peeters, Emiel; Druzhinina, Tamara S; Wuister, Sander F; Lynd, Nathaniel A; Meijer, E W

    2015-10-27

    Various complex self-assembled morphologies of lamellar- and cylinder-forming block copolymers comprising poly(dimethylsiloxane)-b-polylactide (PDMS-b-PLA) confined in cylindrical channels were generated. Combining top-down lithography with bottom-up block copolymer self-assembly grants access to morphologies that are otherwise inaccessible with the bulk materials. Channel diameter (D) was systematically varied with four diblock copolymers having different compositions and bulk domain spacing (L0), corresponding to a range of frustration ratios (D/L0 from 2 to 4). Excessive packing frustration imposed by the channels leads to contorted domains. The resulting morphologies depend strongly on both D/L0 and copolymer composition. Under several circumstances, mixtures of complex morphologies were observed, which hypothetically arise from the severe sensitivity to D/L0 combined with the inherent compositional/molar mass dispersities associated with the nonuniform synthetic materials and silicon templates. Stochastic calculations offer compelling support for the hypothesis, and tractable pathways toward solving this apparent conundrum are proposed. The materials hold great promise for next-generation nanofabrication to address several emerging technologies, offering significantly enhanced versatility to basic diblock copolymers as templates for fabricating complex nanoscale objects. PMID:26503195

  19. pH-responsive diblock copolymer micelles at the silica/aqueous solution interface: Adsorption kinetics and equilibrium studies.

    PubMed

    Sakai, Kenichi; Smith, Emelyn G; Webber, Grant B; Schatz, Christophe; Wanless, Erica J; Bütün, Vural; Armes, Steven P; Biggs, Simon

    2006-08-01

    The adsorption behavior of two examples of a weakly basic diblock copolymer, poly(2-(dimethylamino)ethyl methacrylate)-block-poly(2-(diethylamino)ethyl methacrylate) (PDMA-PDEA), at the silica/aqueous solution interface has been investigated using a quartz crystal microbalance with dissipation monitoring and an optical reflectometer. Dynamic and static light scattering measurements have also been carried out to assess aqueous solution properties of such pH-responsive copolymers. In alkaline solution, core-shell micelles are formed above the critical micelle concentration (cmc) by both copolymers, whereas the chains are molecularly dissolved (as unimers) at all concentrations in acidic solution. As a result, the adsorption behavior of PDMA-PDEA diblock copolymers on silica is strongly dependent on both the copolymer concentration and the solution pH. Below the cmc at pH 9, the cationic PDMA-PDEA copolymers adsorb as unimers and the conformation of the adsorbed polymer is essentially flat. At concentrations just above the cmc, the initial adsorption of copolymer onto the silica is dominated by the unimers due to their faster diffusion compared to the much larger micelles. Rearrangement of the adsorbed unimers and/or their subsequent displacement by micelles from solution is then observed during an equilibration period, and the final adsorbed mass is greater than that observed below the cmc. At concentrations well above the cmc, the much higher proportion of micelles in solution facilitates more effective competition for the surface at all stages of the adsorption process and no replacement of initially adsorbed unimers by micelles is evident. However, the adsorbed layer undergoes gradual rearrangement after initial adsorption. This relaxation is believed to result from a combination of further copolymer adsorption and swelling of the adsorbed layer. PMID:16869582

  20. Self-assembly of lamella-forming diblock copolymers confined in nanochannels: Effect of confinement geometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Bin; Deng, Jian-Hua; Wang, Zheng; Li, Bao-Hui; Shi, An-Chang

    2015-04-01

    The self-assembly of symmetric diblock copolymers confined in the channels of variously shaped cross sections (regular triangles, squares, and ellipses) is investigated using a simulated annealing technique. In the bulk, the studied symmetric diblock copolymers form a lamellar structure with period LL. The geometry and surface property of the confining channels have a large effect on the self-assembled structures and the orientation of the lamellar structures. Stacked perpendicular lamellae with period LL are observed for neutral surfaces regardless of the channel shape and size, but each lamella is in the shape of the corresponding channel's cross section. In the case of triangle-shaped cross sections, stacked parallel lamellae are the majority morphologies for weakly selective surfaces, while morphologies including a triangular-prism-shaped B-cylinder and multiple tridentate lamellae are obtained for strongly selective surfaces. In the cases of square-shaped and ellipse-shaped cross sections, concentric lamellae are the signature morphology for strongly selective surfaces, whereas for weakly selective surfaces, stacked parallel lamellae, and several types of folding lamellae are obtained in the case of square-shaped cross sections, and stacked parallel lamellae are the majority morphologies in the case of ellipse-shaped cross sections when the length of the minor axis is commensurate with the bulk lamellar period. The mean-square end-to-end distance, the average contact number between different species and the surface concentration of the A-monomers are computed to elucidate the mechanisms of the formation of the different morphologies. It is found that the resulting morphology is a consequence of competition among the chain stretching, interfacial energy, and surface energy. Our results suggest that the self-assembled morphology and the orientation of lamellae can be manipulated by the shape, the size, and the surface property of the confining channels. Project

  1. Micellization and adsorption behavior of a near-monodisperse polystyrene-based diblock copolymer in nonpolar media.

    PubMed

    Growney, David J; Mykhaylyk, Oleksandr O; Armes, Steven P

    2014-06-01

    The micellar self-assembly behavior of a near-monodisperse polystyrene-hydrogenated polyisoprene (PS-PEP) diblock copolymer is examined in non-polar media (either n-heptane or n-dodecane). Direct dissolution of this diblock copolymer leads to the formation of relatively large polydisperse colloidal aggregates that are kinetically frozen artifacts of the solid-state copolymer morphology. Dynamic light scattering (DLS) and transmission electron microscopy studies indicate that heating such copolymer dispersions up to 90-110 °C leads to a structural rearrangement, with the generation of relatively small, well-defined spherical micelles that persist on cooling to 20 °C. Variable temperature (1)H NMR studies using deuterated n-alkanes confirm that partial solvation (plasticization) of the polystyrene micelle cores occurs on heating. This increased mobility of the core-forming polystyrene chains is consistent with the evolution from a kinetically-trapped to a thermodynamically-favored copolymer morphology via exchange of individual copolymer chains, which are observed by DLS. These micellar self-assembly observations are also consistent with small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) studies, which indicate the formation of star-like micelles in n-heptane, with a mean polystyrene core diameter of about 20 nm and an overall diameter (core plus corona) of about 80 nm. Micelle dissociation occurs on addition of chloroform, which is a good solvent for both blocks. Finally, physical adsorption of this PS-PEP diblock copolymer onto a model colloidal substrate (carbon black) has been confirmed using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. A Langmuir-type adsorption isotherm has been constructed using a supernatant depletion assay based on UV spectroscopy analysis of the aromatic chromophore in the polystyrene block. Comparable results were obtained using thermogravimetric analysis to directly determine the amount of adsorbed copolymer. Based on the maximum adsorbed amounts observed at 20

  2. Chemical modifications to vesicle forming diblock copolymers: Development of smart functional polymersome membranes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Katz, Joshua S.

    2011-07-01

    A major limitation to current treatment regimens for diseases is the inability to adequately deliver therapeutics. Many routes to encapsulation of these materials have been explored to improve biodistribution and better protect encapsulants from harsh biological conditions. One vehicle particularly attractive for encapsulation of such materials is the polymersome. While promising for translation to clinical use, there are still limitations in polymer chemistry and resulting polymersome behavior that will slow their adaptation. This thesis addresses several of these limitations. The first major limitation to polymersomes is lack of control over their release rate. Release is generally by simple diffusion, leading to a burst. To address this burst, Aim 1 proposes a route to stabilizing polymersome membranes through their polymerization. PCL-PEG copolymers were terminally acrylated and the acrylates polymerized in the membrane following vesicle assembly. Polymerization enhanced mechanical robustness of the membranes and reduced diffusion of encapsulated contents. To ultimately trigger release, Aim 2 presents a novel route to synthesizing diblock copolymers, enabling insertion of a functional group at the blocks' junction. To facilitate triggering of release, we inserted UV-cleavable 2-nitrophenylalanine. Polymersomes assembled from this polymer collapse upon exposure to light and molecules release. Demonstrating further utility of this synthetic route, fluorescent vesicles were prepared using fluorescent lysine as the joining molecule. These vesicles labeled dendritic cells, providing a novel route to cell labeling and tracking. The second limitation to vesicles promising for biomedical applications (made of PCL-PEG) is their solid membranes. Aim 3 demonstrates partial (or full) replacement of the PCL block with a caprolactone analogue, TOSUO, which is non-crystalline and assembles into soft, deformable vesicles. Increasing TOSUO content in the copolymer leads to

  3. How Do Spherical Diblock Copolymer Nanoparticles Grow during RAFT Alcoholic Dispersion Polymerization?

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    A poly(2-(dimethylamino)ethyl methacrylate) (PDMA) chain transfer agent (CTA) is used for the reversible addition–fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) alcoholic dispersion polymerization of benzyl methacrylate (BzMA) in ethanol at 70 °C. THF GPC analysis indicated a well-controlled polymerization with molecular weight increasing linearly with conversion. GPC traces also showed high blocking efficiency with no homopolymer contamination apparent and Mw/Mn values below 1.35 in all cases. 1H NMR studies confirmed greater than 98% BzMA conversion for a target PBzMA degree of polymerization (DP) of up to 600. The PBzMA block becomes insoluble as it grows, leading to the in situ formation of sterically stabilized diblock copolymer nanoparticles via polymerization-induced self-assembly (PISA). Fixing the mean DP of the PDMA stabilizer block at 94 units and systematically varying the DP of the PBzMA block enabled a series of spherical nanoparticles of tunable diameter to be obtained. These nanoparticles were characterized by TEM, DLS, MALLS, and SAXS, with mean diameters ranging from 35 to 100 nm. The latter technique was particularly informative: data fits to a spherical micelle model enabled calculation of the core diameter, surface area occupied per copolymer chain, and the mean aggregation number (Nagg). The scaling exponent derived from a double-logarithmic plot of core diameter vs PBzMA DP suggests that the conformation of the PBzMA chains is intermediate between the collapsed and fully extended state. This is in good agreement with 1H NMR studies, which suggest that only 5−13% of the BzMA residues of the core-forming chains are solvated. The Nagg values calculated from SAXS and MALLS are in good agreement and scale approximately linearly with PBzMA DP. This suggests that spherical micelles grow in size not only as a result of the increase in copolymer molecular weight during the PISA synthesis but also by exchange of individual copolymer chains between micelles

  4. From supramolecular polymersomes to stimuli-responsive nano-capsules based on poly(diene-b-peptide) diblock copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chécot, F.; Lecommandoux, S.; Klok, H.-A.; Gnanou, Y.

    2003-01-01

    This paper discusses the self-assembly of block copolymers into vesicular morphology. After a brief state of art of the field, a system based on an amphiphilic poly(butadiene)-b-poly(γ-L-glutamic acid) (PB-b-PGA) diblock copolymer in aqueous solution is discussed in detail. The aggregation behavior of this block copolymer has been investigated by means of fluorescence spectroscopy, dynamic (DLS) and static (SLS) light scattering as well as transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The diblock copolymer was found to form well-defined vesicles in water. The size of these so-called polymersomes or peptosomes could be reversibly manipulated as a function of both pH and ion strength. Depending on the pH of the aqueous solution, the hydrodynamic radii of these vesicles were found to vary from 100 nm to 150 nm. By cross-linking the 1,2-vinyl double bonds present in the polybutadiene block, the ability to transform a transient supramolecular self-organized aggregate into a permanent “shape-persistent stimuli-responsive nanoparticle” has been demonstrated.

  5. Determination of Effective Particle Density for Sterically Stabilized Carbon Black Particles: Effect of Diblock Copolymer Stabilizer Composition.

    PubMed

    Growney, David J; Fowler, Patrick W; Mykhaylyk, Oleksandr O; Fielding, Lee A; Derry, Matthew J; Aragrag, Najib; Lamb, Gordon D; Armes, Steven P

    2015-08-18

    Two poly(styrene-b-hydrogenated isoprene) (PS-PEP) copolymers and a poly(styrene-b-hydrogenated butadiene) (PS-PB) diblock copolymer of differing polystyrene content (20, 28 or 35 mol %) and molecular weight (117-183 kg mol(-1)) are examined. These copolymers form star-like micelles in n-dodecane, as judged by TEM, DLS, and SAXS studies. At ambient temperature, such micelles are known to adsorb intact onto a model colloidal substrate such as carbon black, conferring a high degree of dispersion (Growney, D. J.; Mykhaylyk, O. O.; Armes, S. P. Langmuir 2014, 30, 6047). Isotherms for micellar adsorption on carbon black at 20 °C are constructed using a supernatant depletion assay based on UV spectroscopy by utilizing the aromatic chromophore in the polystyrene block. Perhaps surprisingly, the diblock copolymer with the lowest polystyrene content has the strongest affinity for the carbon black particles. Assuming that the star-like diblock copolymer micelles adsorb onto carbon black to form hemi-micelles with a stabilizer layer thickness equal to the mean micelle radius, the effective particle density of the resulting sterically stabilized carbon black particles in n-dodecane can be estimated from the SAXS micelle dimensions based on geometric considerations. As an approximation, a spherical core-shell morphology was assumed, and the primary grain size of the carbon black particles was determined to be 74 nm diameter as judged by BET surface area analysis. Using this approach, effective particle densities of 0.90, 0.91, and 0.92 g cm(-3) were calculated for sterically stabilized carbon black particles prepared using the PS-PB20, PS-PEP28, and PS-PEP35 diblock copolymers, respectively. These densities are significantly lower than that of carbon black (1.89 g cm(-3)), which indicates that the sterically stabilized carbon black particles are substantially solvated. Since the rate of sedimentation of the sterically stabilized carbon black particles depends on the density

  6. Sulfate-based anionic diblock copolymer nanoparticles for efficient occlusion within zinc oxide.

    PubMed

    Ning, Y; Fielding, L A; Andrews, T S; Growney, D J; Armes, S P

    2015-04-21

    Occlusion of copolymer particles within inorganic crystalline hosts not only provides a model for understanding the crystallisation process, but also may offer a direct route for the preparation of novel nanocomposite materials with emergent properties. In the present paper, a series of new well-defined anionic diblock copolymer nanoparticles are synthesised by polymerisation-induced self-assembly (PISA) via reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) aqueous emulsion polymerisation and then evaluated as crystal habit modifiers for the in situ formation of ZnO in aqueous solution. Systematic studies indicate that both the chemical nature (i.e. whether sulfate-based or carboxylate-based) and the mean degree of polymerisation (DP) of the anionic stabiliser block play vital roles in determining the crystal morphology. In particular, sulfate-functionalised nanoparticles are efficiently incorporated within the ZnO crystals whereas carboxylate-functionalised nanoparticles are excluded, thus anionic character is a necessary but not sufficient condition for successful occlusion. Moreover, the extent of nanoparticle occlusion within the ZnO phase can be as high as 23% by mass depending on the sulfate-based nanoparticle concentration. The optical properties, chemical composition and crystal structure of the resulting nanocomposite crystals are evaluated and an occlusion mechanism is proposed based on the observed evolution of the ZnO morphology in the presence of sulfate-based anionic nanoparticles. Finally, controlled deposition of a 5 nm gold sol onto porous ZnO particles (produced after calcination of the organic nanoparticles) significantly enhances the rate of photocatalytic decomposition of a model rhodamine B dye on exposure to a relatively weak UV source. PMID:25799462

  7. Fluorescence from an azobenzene-containing diblock copolymer micelle in solution.

    PubMed

    Bo, Qi; Zhao, Yue

    2007-05-01

    We report the observation of unusual fluorescence emission from an azobenzene-containing polymer micellar solution. An amphiphilic diblock copolymer composed of the hydrophilic quaternized poly(4-vinyl pyridine) (QP4VP) and a hydrophobic liquid crystalline polymethacrylate bearing azobenzene side groups (PAzoMA) is nonfluorescent in molecularly dissolved state in N,N-dimethyl formamide (DMF) but becomes fluorescent as a result of the micellization upon addition of water, which confines azobenzene groups into the core region of micellar aggregates. Experimental results suggest that the micellization-enhanced fluorescence was caused by a slowdown, due to the confinement effect, in the rate of the trans-to-cis photoisomerization that is the main nonradiative relaxation process for excited azobenzene groups in the trans form. Furthermore, it was found that the fluorescence intensity of aqueous micellar solution is sensitive to changes in pH (reversible fluorescence variation) and to illumination (irreversible fluorescence variation). The results indicate that a subtle change in the state of polymer micellar association may alter the confining state of azobenzene groups responsible for the fluorescence emission. PMID:17407334

  8. Morphology-Conductivity Relationship in Salt-containing Diblock Copolymer/Homopolymer Mixtures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Irwin, Matthew; Hickey, Robert

    2015-03-01

    In order to unravel how ion conductivity is affected by material morphology, a model system of polystyrene (PS), poly(ethylene oxide) (PEO), PS-block-PEO, and lithium bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)imide (LiTFSI) was fabricated and characterized. These pseudo-ternary polymer blends, in which the lithium salt associates nearly exclusively with the ethylene oxide, have the potential to form a variety of morphologies such as lamellae and the three-dimensionally interpenetrating bicontinuous microemulsion by simply changing blend composition. Similar to what has been observed in salt-containing diblock copolymers, both the order-disorder transition (ODT) temperature and the ODT temperature window of these blends increase sharply with salt loading. By modulating the relative volume fraction of the homopolymers in the blends, it was shown that, although less than order-of-magnitude changes in the domain spacing do not appreciably affect ion conductivity, some morphologies can result in significantly better conductivity than others. These results outline what factors matter most when designing polymer electrolytes for applications such as rechargeable lithium metal batteries and proton exchange membranes.

  9. On the order-disorder transition of compressible diblock copolymer melts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zong, Jing; Wang, Qiang

    2015-11-01

    We performed both the fast off-lattice Monte Carlo simulations of symmetric diblock copolymers (DBC) in an isothermal-isobaric ensemble and the self-consistent field calculations of asymmetric DBC to properly determine the order-disorder transition (ODT) of a model system of compressible DBC melts used in the literature when it is a first-order phase transition, and studied for the first time the co-existence of the two phases at ODT. We found that the co-existing region is quite small and decreases as the system becomes less compressible, which justifies the previous ODT results obtained by equating the Helmholtz free energy per chain of the two phases. We also found that for the most compressible system where there is no repulsion between the same type of segments, the self-consistent field theory predicts that ODT is a second-order phase transition even for asymmetric DBC melts due to its mean-field approximation.

  10. On the order-disorder transition of compressible diblock copolymer melts.

    PubMed

    Zong, Jing; Wang, Qiang

    2015-11-14

    We performed both the fast off-lattice Monte Carlo simulations of symmetric diblock copolymers (DBC) in an isothermal-isobaric ensemble and the self-consistent field calculations of asymmetric DBC to properly determine the order-disorder transition (ODT) of a model system of compressible DBC melts used in the literature when it is a first-order phase transition, and studied for the first time the co-existence of the two phases at ODT. We found that the co-existing region is quite small and decreases as the system becomes less compressible, which justifies the previous ODT results obtained by equating the Helmholtz free energy per chain of the two phases. We also found that for the most compressible system where there is no repulsion between the same type of segments, the self-consistent field theory predicts that ODT is a second-order phase transition even for asymmetric DBC melts due to its mean-field approximation. PMID:26567680

  11. Effect of mobile ions on the electric field needed to orient charged diblock copolymer thin films

    SciTech Connect

    Dehghan, Ashkan; Shi, An-Chang; Schick, M.

    2015-10-07

    We examine the behavior of lamellar phases of charged/neutral diblock copolymer thin films containing mobile ions in the presence of an external electric field. We employ self-consistent field theory and focus on the aligning effect of the electric field on the lamellae. Of particular interest are the effects of the mobile ions on the critical field, the value required to reorient the lamellae from the parallel configuration favored by the surface interaction to the perpendicular orientation favored by the field. We find that the critical field depends strongly on whether the neutral or charged species is favored by the substrates. In the case in which the neutral species is favored, the addition of charges decreases the critical electric field significantly. The effect is greater when the mobile ions are confined to the charged lamellae. In contrast, when the charged species is favored by the substrate, the addition of mobile ions stabilizes the parallel configuration and thus results in an increase in the critical electric field. The presence of ions in the system introduces a new mixed phase in addition to those reported previously.

  12. Effects of amphiphilic diblock copolymer on drug nanoparticle formation and stability

    PubMed Central

    Zhu, Zhengxi

    2013-01-01

    This study systematically compares the effects of amphiphilic diblock copolymer (di-BCP) on stabilizing hydrophobic drug nanoparticles formed by flash nanoprecipitation (FNP), and provides a guideline on choosing suitable di-BCPs. Four widely used di-BCPs, i.e., polystyrene-block-poly(ethylene glycol) (PS-b-PEG), polycaprolactone-block-poly(ethylene glycol) (PCL-b-PEG), polylactide-block-poly(ethylene glycol) (PLA-b-PEG), and poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA-b-PEG), and β-carotene as a model drug were used. The study showed that PLGA-b-PEG was the most suitable one, whose hydrophobic block was biodegradable and noncrystallizable as well as had relatively high glass transition temperature (Tg) and a right solubility parameter (δ). The molecular weight of PLGA block over the range from 5k to 15k showed an insignificant effect on controlling the particle size. Amorphous drug particles with a high drug loading of over 83 wt% can be achieved. Much remarkable evidence supported the nanoparticles with kinetically frozen and nonequilibrium packing structures of polymer chains rather than either the micelles or micellar nanoparticles with two well segregated polymer blocks. The thermodynamic effects of the drug and BCP on the particle stability, size and structures were discussed by using solubility parameters. PMID:24070569

  13. Conductive polymer patterned media fabricated by diblock copolymer lithography for scanning multiprobe data storage.

    PubMed

    Yoshida, Shinya; Ono, Takahito; Esashi, Masayoshi

    2008-11-26

    A conductive polymer dot pattern has been fabricated as a patterned medium using diblock copolymer lithography (DCL) for scanning multiprobe data storage systems (SMDSSs). DCL can easily provide a higher dots pattern density than that obtained using electron beam lithography. For DCL, the microphase-separated structure of polystyrene-block-polymethylmethacrylate is utilized. Then, the closed dot pattern of polyaniline (PANI) with a center to center distance of adjacent dots of 30 nm is fabricated by DCL. Electrical modification experiments of the fabricated PANI dots are demonstrated using scanning probe microscopy (SPM). As a result, the conductivities of the modified dots are selectively changed by applying modification voltages with the tip of the SPM probe. Recording on the conductive polymer with 30 nm pitch at the minimum can be demonstrated, which corresponds to a recording density of ∼700 Gbits inch(-2). These results show that the conductive polymer patterned medium has the potential ability to achieve high-density recording for SMDSSs. PMID:21836269

  14. Highly Flexible Self-Assembled V2O5 Cathodes Enabled by Conducting Diblock Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    An, Hyosung; Mike, Jared; Smith, Kendall; Swank, Lisa; Lin, Yen-Hao; Pesek, Stacy; Verduzco, Rafael; Lutkenhaus, Jodie

    Structural energy storage materials combining load-bearing mechanical properties and high energy storage performance are desired for applications in wearable devices or flexible displays. Vanadium pentoxide (V2O5) is a promising cathode material for possible use in flexible battery electrodes, but it remains limited by low Li+ diffusion coefficient and electronic conductivity, severe volumetric changes upon cycling, and limited mechanical flexibility. Here, we demonstrate a route to address these challenges by blending a diblock copolymer bearing electron- and ion-conducting blocks, poly(3-hexylthiophene)-block-poly(ethyleneoxide) (P3HT- b-PEO), with V2O5 to form a mechanically flexible, electro-mechanically stable hybrid electrode. V2O5 layers were arranged parallel in brick-and-mortar-like fashion held together by the P3HT- b-PEO binder. This unique structure significantly enhances mechanical flexibility, toughness and cyclability without sacrificing capacity. Electrodes comprised of 10 wt% polymer have unusually high toughness (293 kJ/m3) and specific energy (530 Wh/kg), both higher than reduced graphene oxide paper electrodes.

  15. Highly Flexible Self-Assembled V2O5 Cathodes Enabled by Conducting Diblock Copolymers.

    PubMed

    An, Hyosung; Mike, Jared; Smith, Kendall A; Swank, Lisa; Lin, Yen-Hao; L Pesek, Stacy; Verduzco, Rafael; Lutkenhaus, Jodie L

    2015-01-01

    Mechanically robust battery electrodes are desired for applications in wearable devices, flexible displays, and structural energy and power. In this regard, the challenge is to balance mechanical and electrochemical properties in materials that are inherently brittle. Here, we demonstrate a unique water-based self-assembly approach that incorporates a diblock copolymer bearing electron- and ion-conducting blocks, poly(3-hexylthiophene)-block-poly(ethyleneoxide) (P3HT-b-PEO), with V2O5 to form a flexible, tough, carbon-free hybrid battery cathode. V2O5 is a promising lithium intercalation material, but it remains limited by its poor conductivity and mechanical properties. Our approach leads to a unique electrode structure consisting of interlocking V2O5 layers glued together with micellar aggregates of P3HT-b-PEO, which results in robust mechanical properties, far exceeding the those obtained from conventional fluoropolymer binders. Only 5 wt % polymer is required to triple the flexibility of V2O5, and electrodes comprised of 10 wt % polymer have unusually high toughness (293 kJ/m(3)) and specific energy (530 Wh/kg), both higher than reduced graphene oxide paper electrodes. Furthermore, addition of P3HT-b-PEO enhances lithium-ion diffusion, eliminates cracking during cycling, and boosts cyclability relative to V2O5 alone. These results highlight the importance of tradeoffs between mechanical and electrochemical performance, where polymer content can be used to tune both aspects. PMID:26391053

  16. Highly Flexible Self-Assembled V2O5 Cathodes Enabled by Conducting Diblock Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    An, Hyosung; Mike, Jared; Smith, Kendall A.; Swank, Lisa; Lin, Yen-Hao; L. Pesek, Stacy; Verduzco, Rafael; Lutkenhaus, Jodie L.

    2015-09-01

    Mechanically robust battery electrodes are desired for applications in wearable devices, flexible displays, and structural energy and power. In this regard, the challenge is to balance mechanical and electrochemical properties in materials that are inherently brittle. Here, we demonstrate a unique water-based self-assembly approach that incorporates a diblock copolymer bearing electron- and ion-conducting blocks, poly(3-hexylthiophene)-block-poly(ethyleneoxide) (P3HT-b-PEO), with V2O5 to form a flexible, tough, carbon-free hybrid battery cathode. V2O5 is a promising lithium intercalation material, but it remains limited by its poor conductivity and mechanical properties. Our approach leads to a unique electrode structure consisting of interlocking V2O5 layers glued together with micellar aggregates of P3HT-b-PEO, which results in robust mechanical properties, far exceeding the those obtained from conventional fluoropolymer binders. Only 5 wt % polymer is required to triple the flexibility of V2O5, and electrodes comprised of 10 wt % polymer have unusually high toughness (293 kJ/m3) and specific energy (530 Wh/kg), both higher than reduced graphene oxide paper electrodes. Furthermore, addition of P3HT-b-PEO enhances lithium-ion diffusion, eliminates cracking during cycling, and boosts cyclability relative to V2O5 alone. These results highlight the importance of tradeoffs between mechanical and electrochemical performance, where polymer content can be used to tune both aspects.

  17. On the order-disorder transition of compressible diblock copolymer melts

    SciTech Connect

    Zong, Jing; Wang, Qiang

    2015-11-14

    We performed both the fast off-lattice Monte Carlo simulations of symmetric diblock copolymers (DBC) in an isothermal-isobaric ensemble and the self-consistent field calculations of asymmetric DBC to properly determine the order-disorder transition (ODT) of a model system of compressible DBC melts used in the literature when it is a first-order phase transition, and studied for the first time the co-existence of the two phases at ODT. We found that the co-existing region is quite small and decreases as the system becomes less compressible, which justifies the previous ODT results obtained by equating the Helmholtz free energy per chain of the two phases. We also found that for the most compressible system where there is no repulsion between the same type of segments, the self-consistent field theory predicts that ODT is a second-order phase transition even for asymmetric DBC melts due to its mean-field approximation.

  18. Kinetics and Dynamics of HEX to Gyroid Transition of a Diblock Copolymer in Selective Solvent

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spring, Julian; Liu, Yongsheng; Bansil, Rama

    2011-03-01

    Synchrotron based time-resolved small angle x-ray scattering (SAXS) was used to study the kinetics of the formation of a gyroid phase in solutions of a poly (styrene -isoprene) diblock copolymer in dimethyl phthalate, a selective solvent for the polystyrene block. From temperature ramp measurements on an 80% (w/v) sample, a hexagonally-packed cylinders (HEX) phase was identifed below 95 C,while a gyroid formed above 95C. The kinetics of the transitions from HEX to gyroid was examined using temperature jump and ramp experiments over the temperature range of 50-150C. In addition, x-ray photon correlation spectroscopy was used to study the dynamics of the HEX and Gyroid phases, as well as the transition regime. Analysis of the time evolution of the Bragg peaks to follow the kinetics of the transition between these phases will be presented, in addition to analysis of the dynamics of this sample throughout the phase space under investigation. The formation of the Gyroid structure was also modeled using Molecular Dynamics (MD) simulations, and the results of these simulations will also be presented.

  19. A new process for fabricating nanodot arrays on selective regions with diblock copolymer thin film

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, Dae-Ho

    2007-09-01

    A procedure for micropatterning a single layer of nanodot arrays in selective regions is demonstrated by using thin films of polystyrene-b-poly(t-butyl acrylate) (PS-b-PtBA) diblock copolymer. The thin-film self-assembled into hexagonally arranged PtBA nanodomains in a PS matrix on a substrate by solvent annealing with 1,4-dioxane. The PtBA nanodomains were converted into poly(acrylic acid) (PAA) having carboxylic-acid-functionalized nanodomains by exposure to hydrochloric acid vapor, or were removed by ultraviolet (UV) irradiation to generate vacant sites without any functional groups due to the elimination of PtBA domains. By sequential treatment with aqueous sodium bicarbonate and aqueous zinc acetate solution, zinc cations were selectively loaded only on the carboxylic-acid-functionalized nanodomains prepared via hydrolysis. Macroscopic patterning through a photomask via UV irradiation, hydrolysis, sequential zinc cation loading and calcination left a nanodot array of zinc oxide on a selectively UV-shaded region.

  20. Fluctuation/correlation effects in symmetric diblock copolymers: on the order-disorder transition.

    PubMed

    Zong, Jing; Wang, Qiang

    2013-09-28

    Using fast off-lattice Monte Carlo simulations with experimentally accessible fluctuations, we reported the first systematic study unambiguously quantifying the shift of the order-disorder transition (ODT) χ* of symmetric diblock copolymers from the mean-field prediction χ(MF)*. Our simulations are performed in a canonical ensemble with variable box lengths to eliminate the restriction of periodic boundary conditions on the lamellar period, and give the most accurate data of χ* and bulk lamellar period reported to date. Exactly the same model system (Hamiltonian) is used in both our simulations and mean-field theory; the ODT shift is therefore due to the fluctuations/correlations neglected by the latter. While χ*/χ(MF)*-1∝N(-k) is found with N denoting the invariant degree of polymerization, k decreases around the N-value corresponding to the face-centered cubic close packing of polymer segments as hard spheres, indicating the short-range correlation effects. PMID:24089804

  1. Water Diffusion Dependence on Amphiphilic Block Design in (Amphiphilic-Hydrophobic) Diblock Copolymer Membranes.

    PubMed

    Dorenbos, Gert

    2016-06-30

    Polyelectrolyte membranes (PEMs) are applied in polyelectrolyte fuel cells (PEFC). The proton conductive pathways within PEMs are provided by nanometer-sized water containing pores. Large-scale application of PEFC requires the production of low-cost membranes with high proton conductivity and therefore good connected pore networks. Pore network formation within four alternative model diblock (hydrophobic_amphiphilic) copolymers in the presence of water is studied by dissipative particle dynamics. Each hydrophobic block contains 50 consecutively connected hydrophobic (A) fragments, and amphiphilic blocks contain 40 hydrophobic A beads and 10 hydrophilic C beads. For one amphiphilic block the C beads are distributed uniformly along the backbone. For the other architectures C beads are located at the end of the side chains attached at regular intervals along the backbone. Water diffusion through the pores is modeled by Monte Carlo tracer diffusion through mapped morphologies. Diffusion is highest for the grafted architectures and increases with increase of length of the side chains. A consistent picture emerges in which diffusion strongly increases with the value of ⟨Nbond⟩ within the amphiphilic block, where ⟨Nbond⟩ is the average number of bonds between hydrophobic A beads and the nearest C bead. PMID:27266679

  2. Selective Stabilization of the Fddd Diblock Copolymer Microphase in an Applied Electric Field

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martin, Jonathan; Li, Wei; Delaney, Kris; Fredrickson, Glenn

    Using self-consistent field theory, we explore the phase behavior of AB diblock copolymer melts in a uniform applied electric field. We assign an isotropic polarizability to each monomer type, such that the electric field selectively destabilizes AB interfaces that are perpendicular to the applied field. Under the mean-field approximation of the present model, lamellar and cylindrical structures align such that their AB interfaces are parallel to the electric field, and their relative stability with respect to the disordered phase is unchanged. Sphere and network phases do not have an axis of uniformity, so the preferred orientation for each of these phases must be identified by simulation. Small distortions in morphology are induced by the electric field for these phases, such that the free energy response includes non-harmonic terms. We compute the phase diagram for a melt in an applied electric field by comparing free energies of each morphology at its preferred orientation. We find that the stability regions for the sphere and network phases shrink with increasing electric field strength. Moreover, the double gyroid phase is relatively destabilized against the Fddd phase, extending the stability region for the Fddd phase to larger segregation strengths.

  3. Self-assembly of diblock copolymer-maghemite nanoparticle hybrid thin films.

    PubMed

    Yao, Yuan; Metwalli, Ezzeldin; Moulin, Jean-François; Su, Bo; Opel, Matthias; Müller-Buschbaum, Peter

    2014-10-22

    The arrangement of maghemite (γ-Fe2O3) nanoparticles (NPs) in poly(styrene-d8-block-n-butyl methacrylate) P(Sd-b-BMA) diblock copolymer (DBC) films via a self-assembly process was investigated toward the fabrication of highly ordered maghemite-polymer hybrid thin films. The resulting thin films exhibited a perforated lamella with an enrichment layer containing NPs as investigated with X-ray reflectometry, scanning electron microscopy, atomic force microscopy, and time-of-flight grazing incidence small angle neutron scattering as a function of the NP concentrations. The NPs were selectively deposited in the PSd domains of the DBC during the microphase separation process. At low NP concentrations, the incorporation of the NPs within the DBC thin films resulted in an enhanced microphase separation process and formation of highly oriented and ordered nanostructured hybrid films. At higher NP concentrations, the aggregation of the NPs was dominating and large sized metal oxide clusters were observed. The superparamagnetic properties of the metal oxide-polymer hybrid films at various NP concentrations were probed by a superconducting quantum interference device magnetometer, which shows that the hybrid films are highly attractive for optical devices, magnetic sensors, and magnetic recording devices. PMID:25243575

  4. Tethered Chains in Poor Solvent Conditions: An Experimental Study Involving Langmuir Diblock Copolymer Monolayers

    SciTech Connect

    Kent, M.S.; Lee, L.T.; Majewski, J.; Satija, S.; Smith, G.S.

    1998-10-13

    We have employed Langmuir monolayer of highly asymmetric polydimethylsiloxane- polystyrene (PDMS-PS) diblock copolymers on dioctyl phthalate (DOP) at temperatures ranging from 22 "C to -35 `C as a model system for tethered chains in poor solvent conditions. The thicknesses of the tethered PS layers extending into the DOP subphase, measured by neutron reflection, decrease with decreasing temperature (T) over this entire r~ge. However, the v~iation with T becomes weak below -20 "C. At the ]owest T, the layer thicknesses are contracted 55 % -75 `% of their values at the theta condition (T8 = 22 "C), but are still quite swollen compared to the fully collapsed, nonsolvent limit. The contraction of the layer with decreasing T is determined as a function of surface density and molecular weight. These data are compared to universal scaling forms. The PS segments are depleted from the air surface over the entire T range, the thickness of the depletion layer increasing slightly with decreasing T. The free energy of the surface layer is probed by surface tension measurements. Negative surface pressures are observed at low coverages for both PDMS-PS and PDMS monolayer, indicating metastability toward lateral phase separation. Evidence for a trruisition from a dispersed phase to a condensed phase with decreasing T was observed in the reflectivity at very low PDMS-PS coverage.

  5. Incorporating Diblock Copolymer Nanoparticles into Calcite Crystals: Do Anionic Carboxylate Groups Alone Ensure Efficient Occlusion?

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    New spherical diblock copolymer nanoparticles were synthesized via RAFT aqueous dispersion polymerization of 2-hydroxypropyl methacrylate (HPMA) at 70 °C and 20% w/w solids using either poly(carboxybetaine methacrylate) or poly(proline methacrylate) as the steric stabilizer block. Both of these stabilizers contain carboxylic acid groups, but poly(proline methacrylate) is anionic above pH 9.2, whereas poly(carboxybetaine methacrylate) has zwitterionic character at this pH. When calcite crystals are grown at an initial pH of 9.5 in the presence of these two types of nanoparticles, it is found that the anionic poly(proline methacrylate)-stabilized particles are occluded uniformly throughout the crystals (up to 6.8% by mass, 14.0% by volume). In contrast, the zwitterionic poly(carboxybetaine methacrylate)-stabilized particles show no signs of occlusion into calcite crystals grown under identical conditions. The presence of carboxylic acid groups alone therefore does not guarantee efficient occlusion: overall anionic character is an additional prerequisite. PMID:27042383

  6. Structure of Poly(3-(2'-ethyl)hexylthiophene) (P3EHT) Containing Diblock Copolymers Controlled via Thermal Processing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davidson, Emily; Segalman, Rachel

    Poly(3-alkylthiophene)s with modified alkyl side chains crystallize confined within block copolymer microphases, serving as a good model system for the confined crystallization of semiflexible polymers. We hypothesize that the diblock structure may impose an equilibrium degree of crystalline conjugated chain folding which here is only accessible for small degrees of undercooling. Crystallization of these P3ATs in soft confinement drives microdomain expansion; here, we show that this expansion is minimized for crystallization at small degrees of undercooling. Upon heating, domains return to their melt structure over three distinct regimes. These regimes directly correspond to thermal features we assign to the relaxation of a rigid-amorphous fraction at the diblock interface, melt-recrystallization which reorganizes the degree of chain folding, and a final complete melting transition.

  7. Amphiphilic PEO-b-PBLG diblock and PBLG-b-PEO-b-PBLG triblock copolymer based nanoparticles: doxorubicin loading and in vitro evaluation.

    PubMed

    Kakkar, Dipti; Mazzaferro, Silvia; Thevenot, Julie; Schatz, Christophe; Bhatt, Anant; Dwarakanath, Bilikere S; Singh, Harpal; Mishra, Anil K; Lecommandoux, Sebastien

    2015-01-01

    Huisgen's 1,3-dipolar cycloaddition ("Click Chemestry") has been used to prepare amphiphilic PEO-b-PBLG diblock and PBLG-b-PEO-b-PBLG triblock copolymers as potential carriers of anticancer drugs. Spherical and flower shaped micelles (D ≈ 100 nm) were obtained from diblock and triblock copolymers respectively. DOX was effectively encapsulated up to 18 wt.% and 50-60% of it was steadily released from the micelles over a period of 7 d. Flow cytometry and fluorescence microscopy confirmed the effective intracellular uptake as well as the sustained release of DOX from micelles. These results suggest that the diblock as well as triblock copolymers are promising carriers for intra-cellular drug delivery. PMID:25557884

  8. Short-range ordered photonic structures of lamellae-forming diblock copolymers for excitation-regulated fluorescence enhancement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Se Hee; Kim, Ki-Se; Char, Kookheon; Yoo, Seong Il; Sohn, Byeong-Hyeok

    2016-05-01

    Photonic crystals can be represented by periodic nanostructures with alternating refractive indices, which create artificial stop bands with the appearance of colors. In this regard, nanodomains of block copolymers and the corresponding structural colors have been intensively studied in the past. However, the practical application of photonic crystals of block copolymers has been limited to a large degree because of the presence of large defects and grain boundaries in the nanodomains of block copolymers. The present study focuses on the alternative opportunity of short-range ordered nanodomains of block copolymers for fluorescence enhancement, which also has a direct relevance to the development of fluorescence sensors or detectors. The enhancement mechanism was found to be interconnected with the excitation process rather than the alternation of the decay kinetics. In particular, we demonstrate that randomly oriented, but regular grains of lamellae of polystyrene-block-polyisoprene, PS-b-PI, diblock copolymers and their blend with PS homopolymers can behave as Bragg mirrors to induce multiple reflections of the excitation source inside the photonic structures. This process in turn significantly increases the effective absorption of the given fluorophores inside the polymeric photonic structures to amplify the fluorescence signal.Photonic crystals can be represented by periodic nanostructures with alternating refractive indices, which create artificial stop bands with the appearance of colors. In this regard, nanodomains of block copolymers and the corresponding structural colors have been intensively studied in the past. However, the practical application of photonic crystals of block copolymers has been limited to a large degree because of the presence of large defects and grain boundaries in the nanodomains of block copolymers. The present study focuses on the alternative opportunity of short-range ordered nanodomains of block copolymers for fluorescence

  9. The effect of particle size on the morphology and thermodynamics of diblock copolymer/tethered-particle membranes

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang, Bo; Edwards, Brian J.

    2015-06-07

    A combination of self-consistent field theory and density functional theory was used to examine the effect of particle size on the stable, 3-dimensional equilibrium morphologies formed by diblock copolymers with a tethered nanoparticle attached either between the two blocks or at the end of one of the blocks. Particle size was varied between one and four tenths of the radius of gyration of the diblock polymer chain for neutral particles as well as those either favoring or disfavoring segments of the copolymer blocks. Phase diagrams were constructed and analyzed in terms of thermodynamic diagrams to understand the physics associated with the molecular-level self-assembly processes. Typical morphologies were observed, such as lamellar, spheroidal, cylindrical, gyroidal, and perforated lamellar, with the primary concentration region of the tethered particles being influenced heavily by particle size and tethering location, strength of the particle-segment energetic interactions, chain length, and copolymer radius of gyration. The effect of the simulation box size on the observed morphology and system thermodynamics was also investigated, indicating possible effects of confinement upon the system self-assembly processes.

  10. Mode-coupling theory of self-diffusion in diblock copolymers I. General derivation and qualitative predictions

    SciTech Connect

    Guenza, M.; Tang, H.; Schweizer, K.S.

    1998-01-01

    A microscopic theory of self-diffusion in diblock copolymer melts and solutions has been developed based on polymeric mode-coupling methods formulated at the level of the time and space correlated interchain excluded volume and chi-parameter forces. Equilibrium structural correlations are determined via microscopic liquid state integral equation or coarse-grained field theoretic methods. The specific dynamical consequences of self-assembly are predicted to depend rather sensitively on temperature, degree of polymerization, copolymer composition and concentration, and local block friction coefficients. The dominant physical effect for entangled diblocks is the retardation of the relaxation time of the interchain excluded volume forces due to the thermodynamically-driven segregation of blocks into microdomains, resulting in suppression of translational motion. Analytic analysis in the long chain limit allows the derivation of new scaling laws relating the self-diffusion constant and chain degree of polymerization and solution concentration. Potential limitations for real copolymer materials associated with the structurally and dynamically isotropic description adopted by the theory are discussed. {copyright} {ital 1998 American Institute of Physics.}

  11. Anomalous Pressure Dependence of the Critical Fluctuations in binary blends and diblock copolymers of PDMS and PEE.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mortensen, Kell; Schwahn, Dietmar; Frielinghaus, Henrich; Almdal, Kristoffer

    2000-03-01

    The structure factor of binary blends of PDMS and PEE, and the corresponding diblock copolymer PDMS-PEE have been measured by small-angle neutron scattering as a function of both temperature and pressure. The study includes as well dependencies of the polymer molar masses. The phase behavior of both the blend and the diblock copolymer systems shows the similar anomalous trend: with increasing pressure the critical temperature decreases, but upon further increase in pressure the critical temperature also increases. In the block copolymer system this leads with monotonously increasing pressure to first a melting and subsequently an ordering, while the blend goes from two-phase to one-phase and back to two-phase. Based on analysis of the Flory-Huggins type, the origin of this behavior can be associated with changes in the entropic and the enthalpic parts of the interaction parameter. The abnormal behavior seems to be closely related to the characteristics of the PDMS part of the system. An additional result of the pressure dependent structural data is the conformational compressibility. In contrast to theoretical expectations, analysis of the peak position of the experimental structure factor results in a pronounced peak in the conformational compressibility at the order-to-disorder transition temperature.

  12. Bespoke contrast-matched diblock copolymer nanoparticles enable the rational design of highly transparent Pickering double emulsions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rymaruk, Matthew J.; Thompson, Kate L.; Derry, Matthew J.; Warren, Nicholas J.; Ratcliffe, Liam P. D.; Williams, Clive N.; Brown, Steven L.; Armes, Steven P.

    2016-07-01

    We report the preparation of highly transparent oil-in-water Pickering emulsions using contrast-matched organic nanoparticles. This is achieved via addition of judicious amounts of either sucrose or glycerol to an aqueous dispersion of poly(glycerol monomethacrylate)56-poly(2,2,2-trifluoroethyl methacrylate)500 [PGMA-PTFEMA] diblock copolymer nanoparticles prior to high shear homogenization with an equal volume of n-dodecane. The resulting Pickering emulsions comprise polydisperse n-dodecane droplets of 20-100 μm diameter and exhibit up to 96% transmittance across the visible spectrum. In contrast, control experiments using non-contrast-matched poly(glycerol monomethacrylate)56-poly(benzyl methacrylate)300 [PGMA56-PBzMA300] diblock copolymer nanoparticles as a Pickering emulsifier only produced conventional highly turbid emulsions. Thus contrast-matching of the two immiscible phases is a necessary but not sufficient condition for the preparation of highly transparent Pickering emulsions: it is essential to use isorefractive nanoparticles in order to minimize light scattering. Furthermore, highly transparent oil-in-water-in-oil Pickering double emulsions can be obtained by homogenizing the contrast-matched oil-in-water Pickering emulsion prepared using the PGMA56-PTFEMA500 nanoparticles with a contrast-matched dispersion of hydrophobic poly(lauryl methacrylate)39-poly(2,2,2-trifluoroethyl methacrylate)800 [PLMA39-PTFEMA800] diblock copolymer nanoparticles in n-dodecane. Finally, we show that an isorefractive oil-in-water Pickering emulsion enables fluorescence spectroscopy to be used to monitor the transport of water-insoluble small molecules (pyrene and benzophenone) between n-dodecane droplets. Such transport is significantly less efficient than that observed for the equivalent isorefractive surfactant-stabilized emulsion. Conventional turbid emulsions do not enable such a comparison to be made because the intense light scattering leads to substantial spectral

  13. Bespoke contrast-matched diblock copolymer nanoparticles enable the rational design of highly transparent Pickering double emulsions.

    PubMed

    Rymaruk, Matthew J; Thompson, Kate L; Derry, Matthew J; Warren, Nicholas J; Ratcliffe, Liam P D; Williams, Clive N; Brown, Steven L; Armes, Steven P

    2016-08-14

    We report the preparation of highly transparent oil-in-water Pickering emulsions using contrast-matched organic nanoparticles. This is achieved via addition of judicious amounts of either sucrose or glycerol to an aqueous dispersion of poly(glycerol monomethacrylate)56-poly(2,2,2-trifluoroethyl methacrylate)500 [PGMA-PTFEMA] diblock copolymer nanoparticles prior to high shear homogenization with an equal volume of n-dodecane. The resulting Pickering emulsions comprise polydisperse n-dodecane droplets of 20-100 μm diameter and exhibit up to 96% transmittance across the visible spectrum. In contrast, control experiments using non-contrast-matched poly(glycerol monomethacrylate)56-poly(benzyl methacrylate)300 [PGMA56-PBzMA300] diblock copolymer nanoparticles as a Pickering emulsifier only produced conventional highly turbid emulsions. Thus contrast-matching of the two immiscible phases is a necessary but not sufficient condition for the preparation of highly transparent Pickering emulsions: it is essential to use isorefractive nanoparticles in order to minimize light scattering. Furthermore, highly transparent oil-in-water-in-oil Pickering double emulsions can be obtained by homogenizing the contrast-matched oil-in-water Pickering emulsion prepared using the PGMA56-PTFEMA500 nanoparticles with a contrast-matched dispersion of hydrophobic poly(lauryl methacrylate)39-poly(2,2,2-trifluoroethyl methacrylate)800 [PLMA39-PTFEMA800] diblock copolymer nanoparticles in n-dodecane. Finally, we show that an isorefractive oil-in-water Pickering emulsion enables fluorescence spectroscopy to be used to monitor the transport of water-insoluble small molecules (pyrene and benzophenone) between n-dodecane droplets. Such transport is significantly less efficient than that observed for the equivalent isorefractive surfactant-stabilized emulsion. Conventional turbid emulsions do not enable such a comparison to be made because the intense light scattering leads to substantial spectral

  14. Diblock Copolymer Micelles and Supported Films with Noncovalently Incorporated Chromophores: A Modular Platform for Efficient Energy Transfer

    SciTech Connect

    Adams, Peter G.; Collins, Aaron M.; Sahin, Tuba; Subramanian, Vijaya; Urban, Volker S.; Vairaprakash, Pothiappan; Tian, Yongming; Evans, Deborah G.; Shreve, Andrew P.; Montaño, Gabriel A.

    2015-04-08

    Here we report generation of modular, artificial light-harvesting assemblies where an amphiphilic diblock copolymer, poly(ethylene oxide)-block-poly(butadiene), serves as the framework for noncovalent organization of BODIPY-based energy donor and bacteriochlorin-based energy acceptor chromophores. The assemblies are adaptive and form well-defined micelles in aqueous solution and high-quality monolayer and bilayer films on solid supports, with the latter showing greater than 90% energy transfer efficiency. Ultimately, this study lays the groundwork for further development of modular, polymer-based materials for light harvesting and other photonic applications.

  15. Cell Dynamics Simulations of Cylinder-Forming Diblock Copolymers in Thin Films on Topographical and Chemically Patterned Substrates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zvelindovsky, Andrei; Dessi, Roberta; Pinna, Marco; Serral, Maria; Bonet, Josep

    2014-03-01

    Using 3-dimensional cell dynamics simulation, we demonstrate that the tetragonal phase of cylinder forming diblock copolymers can be induced on both topographical and chemical patterned substrates. The results quantitatively describe the different effect of both substrates on the degree of imperfection in the tetragonal phase observed in recent experiments [Xu, J.et al. Soft Matter 2011, 7, 3915]. Comparative analysis of the structural evolution for different thermal noise level in square, rectangular and diamond-shape lateral confinements is performed. A set of patterned substrates has been investigated.

  16. Simulation of the gyroid phase in off-lattice models of pure diblock copolymer melts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martínez-Veracoechea, Francisco J.; Escobedo, Fernando A.

    2006-09-01

    Particle-based molecular simulations of pure diblock copolymer (DBC) systems were performed in continuum space via dissipative particle dynamics and Monte Carlo methods for a bead-spring chain model. This model consisted of chains of soft repulsive particles often used with dissipative particle dynamics. The gyroid phase was successfully simulated in DBC melts at selected conditions provided that the simulation box size was commensurate with the gyroid lattice spacing. Simulations were concentrated at conditions where the gyroid phase is expected to be stable which allowed us to outline approximate phase boundaries. When more than one phase was observed by varying simulation box size, thermodynamic stability was discerned by comparing the Helmholtz free energy of the competing phases. For this purpose, chemical potentials were efficiently simulated via an expanded ensemble that gradually inserts/deletes a target chain to/from the system. These simulations employed a novel combination of Bennett's [J. Comput. Phys. 22, 245 (1976)] acceptance-ratio method to estimate free-energy differences and a recently proposed method to get biasing weights that maximize the number of times that the target chain is regrown. The analysis of the gyroid nodes revealed clear evidence of packing frustration in the form of an (entropically) unfavorably overstretching of chains, a phenomenon that has been suggested to provide the structural basis for the limited region of stability of the gyroid phase in the DBC phase diagram. Finally, the G phase and nodal chain stretching were also found in simulations with a completely different DBC particle-based model.

  17. Tethered chains in poor solvent conditions: An experimental study involving Langmuir diblock copolymer monolayers

    SciTech Connect

    Kent, M.S.; Majewski, J.; Smith, G.S.; Lee, L.T.; Satija, S.

    1999-02-01

    We have employed Langmuir monolayers of highly asymmetric polydimethylsiloxane-polystyrene (PDMS-PS) diblock copolymers on dioctyl phthalate (DOP) at temperatures ranging from 22 to {minus}35thinsp{degree}C as a model system for tethered chains in poor solvent conditions. The thicknesses of the tethered PS layers extending into the DOP subphase, measured by neutron reflection, decrease with decreasing temperature ({ital T}) over this entire range. However, the variation with {ital T} becomes weak below {minus}20thinsp{degree}C. At the lowest {ital T}, the layer thicknesses are 55{percent}{endash}75{percent} of the values at the theta condition (T{sub {theta}}=22thinsp{degree}C). The contraction of the layer with decreasing {ital T} is determined as a function of surface density and molecular weight, and these data are compared to universal scaling forms. The PS segments are depleted from the near surface region over the entire {ital T} range, with the thickness of the depletion layer increasing slightly with decreasing {ital T}. The free energy of the surface layer is probed by surface tension measurements. With decreasing {ital T}, negative surface pressures are observed at low coverages for both PDMS-PS and PDMS monolayers, indicating metastability toward lateral phase separation. Evidence for a transition from a dispersed phase to a condensed phase with decreasing {ital T} was observed in the reflectivity for very low PDMS-PS coverage. At high coverage where the submerged blocks are strongly interacting at 22thinsp{degree}C, only a modest decrease in surface pressure is observed over the experimental range of {ital T} despite the strong contraction. This latter result is discussed in terms of the relative contributions of enthalpic and entropic effects to the surface pressure. {copyright} {ital 1999 American Institute of Physics.}

  18. Porous Diblock Copolymer Thin Films in High-Performance Semiconductor Microelectronics

    SciTech Connect

    Black, C.T.

    2011-02-01

    The engine fueling more than 40 years of performance improvements in semiconductor integrated circuits (ICs) has been industry's ability to pattern circuit elements at ever-higher resolution and with ever-greater precision. Steady advances in photolithography - the process wherein ultraviolet light chemically changes a photosensitive polymer resist material in order to create a latent image - have resulted in scaling of minimum printed feature sizes from tens of microns during the 1980s to sub-50 nanometer transistor gate lengths in today's state-of-the-art ICs. The history of semiconductor technology scaling as well as future technology requirements is documented in the International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors (ITRS). The progression of the semiconductor industry to the realm of nanometer-scale sizes has brought enormous challenges to device and circuit fabrication, rendering performance improvements by conventional scaling alone increasingly difficult. Most often this discussion is couched in terms of field effect transistor (FET) feature sizes such as the gate length or gate oxide thickness, however these challenges extend to many other aspects of the IC, including interconnect dimensions and pitch, device packing density, power consumption, and heat dissipation. The ITRS Technology Roadmap forecasts a difficult set of scientific and engineering challenges with no presently-known solutions. The primary focus of this chapter is the research performed at IBM on diblock copolymer films composed of polystyrene (PS) and poly(methyl-methacrylate) (PMMA) (PS-b-PMMA) with total molecular weights M{sub n} in the range of {approx}60K (g/mol) and polydispersities (PD) of {approx}1.1. These materials self assemble to form patterns having feature sizes in the range of 15-20nm. PS-b-PMMA was selected as a self-assembling patterning material due to its compatibility with the semiconductor microelectronics manufacturing infrastructure, as well as the significant body

  19. Highly Flexible Self-Assembled V2O5 Cathodes Enabled by Conducting Diblock Copolymers

    PubMed Central

    An, Hyosung; Mike, Jared; Smith, Kendall A.; Swank, Lisa; Lin, Yen-Hao; L. Pesek, Stacy; Verduzco, Rafael; Lutkenhaus, Jodie L.

    2015-01-01

    Mechanically robust battery electrodes are desired for applications in wearable devices, flexible displays, and structural energy and power. In this regard, the challenge is to balance mechanical and electrochemical properties in materials that are inherently brittle. Here, we demonstrate a unique water-based self-assembly approach that incorporates a diblock copolymer bearing electron- and ion-conducting blocks, poly(3-hexylthiophene)-block-poly(ethyleneoxide) (P3HT-b-PEO), with V2O5 to form a flexible, tough, carbon-free hybrid battery cathode. V2O5 is a promising lithium intercalation material, but it remains limited by its poor conductivity and mechanical properties. Our approach leads to a unique electrode structure consisting of interlocking V2O5 layers glued together with micellar aggregates of P3HT-b-PEO, which results in robust mechanical properties, far exceeding the those obtained from conventional fluoropolymer binders. Only 5 wt % polymer is required to triple the flexibility of V2O5, and electrodes comprised of 10 wt % polymer have unusually high toughness (293 kJ/m3) and specific energy (530 Wh/kg), both higher than reduced graphene oxide paper electrodes. Furthermore, addition of P3HT-b-PEO enhances lithium-ion diffusion, eliminates cracking during cycling, and boosts cyclability relative to V2O5 alone. These results highlight the importance of tradeoffs between mechanical and electrochemical performance, where polymer content can be used to tune both aspects. PMID:26391053

  20. Highly Flexible Self-Assembled V2O5 Cathodes Enabled by Conducting Diblock Copolymers

    DOE PAGESBeta

    An, Hyosung; Mike, Jared; Smith, Kendall A.; Swank, Lisa; Lin, Yen-Hao; L. Pesek, Stacy; Verduzco, Rafael; Lutkenhaus, Jodie L.

    2015-09-22

    Mechanically robust battery electrodes are desired for applications in wearable devices, flexible displays, and structural energy and power. In this regard, the challenge is to balance mechanical and electrochemical properties in materials that are inherently brittle. Here, we demonstrate a unique water-based self-assembly approach that incorporates a diblock copolymer bearing electron- and ion-conducting blocks, poly(3-hexylthiophene)-block-poly(ethyleneoxide) (P3HT-b-PEO), with V2O5 to form a flexible, tough, carbon-free hybrid battery cathode. V2O5 is a promising lithium intercalation material, but it remains limited by its poor conductivity and mechanical properties. Our approach leads to a unique electrode structure consisting of interlocking V2O5 layers glued togethermore » with micellar aggregates of P3HT-b-PEO, which results in robust mechanical properties, far exceeding the those obtained from conventional fluoropolymer binders. Only 5 wt % polymer is required to triple the flexibility of V2O5, and electrodes comprised of 10 wt % polymer have unusually high toughness (293 kJ/m3) and specific energy (530 Wh/kg), both higher than reduced graphene oxide paper electrodes. Furthermore, addition of P3HT-b-PEO enhances lithium-ion diffusion, eliminates cracking during cycling, and boosts cyclability relative to V2O5 alone. These results highlight the importance of tradeoffs between mechanical and electrochemical performance, where polymer content can be used to tune both aspects.« less

  1. Electron Propagation within Redox-Active Microdomains in Thin Films of Ferrocene-Containing Diblock Copolymers.

    PubMed

    Ghimire, Govinda; Yi, Yi; Derylo, Maksymilian A; Baker, Lane A; Ito, Takashi

    2015-11-10

    This paper reports the electrochemical behavior of redox-active microdomains in thin films of ferrocene-containing diblock copolymers, polystyrene-block-poly(2-(acryloyloxy)ethyl ferrocenecarboxylate) (PS-b-PAEFc). PS-b-PAEFc with different PAEFc volume fractions (PS154-b-PAEFc51, PS154-b-PAEFc26, and PS154-b-PAEFc12, where the subscripts represent the polymerization degree of each block; f(PAEFc) = 0.47, 0.30, and 0.17, respectively) was synthesized by sequential atom transfer radical polymerization. PS-b-PAEFc films of controlled thicknesses (20-160 nm) were prepared on gold substrates via spin-coating and characterized by ellipsometry. Microdomains were observed via atomic force microscopy on the surfaces of PS154-b-PAEFc51 and PS154-b-PAEFc26 thin films but not on the surfaces of PS154-b-PAEFc12 thin films. Electrochemical behavior of films was assessed by cyclic voltammetry and chronocoulometry in acetonitrile solution. The redox potential of ferrocene moieties was similar (ca. + 0.29 V vs Fc(+)/Fc) regardless of fPAEFc and film thickness. For PS154-b-PAEFc51 and PS154-b-PAEFc26, thicker films afforded larger faradaic peak currents and exhibited diffusion-controlled voltammograms at faster sweep rates. PS154-b-PAEFc26 produced voltammograms less influenced by solvent-induced swelling than PS154-b-PAEFc51, reflecting the improved morphological stability of PAEFc microdomains by redox-inert PS frameworks. In contrast, PS154-b-PAEFc12 films yielded similar faradaic peak currents regardless of film thickness and exhibited voltammograms indicative of surface-confined species. These observations suggest that PS154-b-PAEFc51 and PS154-b-PAEFc26 films contain continuous PAEFc microdomains extending from the electrode to the surface, in contrast to the PS154-b-PAEFc12 films which contain isolated PAEFc microdomains buried within the PS matrix. Electron propagation took place only through PAEFc microdomains that could electrically communicate with the underlying

  2. Thermo-responsive Diblock Copolymer Worm Gels in Non-polar Solvents

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Benzyl methacrylate (BzMA) is polymerized using a poly(lauryl methacrylate) macromolecular chain transfer agent (PLMA macro-CTA) using reversible addition–fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization at 70 °C in n-dodecane. This choice of solvent leads to an efficient dispersion polymerization, with polymerization-induced self-assembly (PISA) occurring via the growing PBzMA block to produce a range of PLMA–PBzMA diblock copolymer nano-objects, including spheres, worms, and vesicles. In the present study, particular attention is paid to the worm phase, which forms soft free-standing gels at 20 °C due to multiple inter-worm contacts. Such worm gels exhibit thermo-responsive behavior: heating above 50 °C causes degelation due to the onset of a worm-to-sphere transition. Degelation occurs because isotropic spheres interact with each other much less efficiently than the highly anisotropic worms. This worm-to-sphere thermal transition is essentially irreversible on heating a dilute solution (0.10% w/w) but is more or less reversible on heating a more concentrated dispersion (20% w/w). The relatively low volatility of n-dodecane facilitates variable-temperature rheological studies, which are consistent with eventual reconstitution of the worm phase on cooling to 20 °C. Variable-temperature 1H NMR studies conducted in d26-dodecane confirm partial solvation of the PBzMA block at elevated temperature: surface plasticization of the worm cores is invoked to account for the observed change in morphology, because this is sufficient to increase the copolymer curvature and hence induce a worm-to-sphere transition. Small-angle X-ray scattering and TEM are used to investigate the structural changes that occur during the worm-to-sphere-to-worm thermal cycle; experiments conducted at 1.0 and 5.0% w/w demonstrate the concentration-dependent (ir)reversibility of these morphological transitions. PMID:24678949

  3. Thermo-responsive diblock copolymer worm gels in non-polar solvents.

    PubMed

    Fielding, Lee A; Lane, Jacob A; Derry, Matthew J; Mykhaylyk, Oleksandr O; Armes, Steven P

    2014-04-16

    Benzyl methacrylate (BzMA) is polymerized using a poly(lauryl methacrylate) macromolecular chain transfer agent (PLMA macro-CTA) using reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization at 70 °C in n-dodecane. This choice of solvent leads to an efficient dispersion polymerization, with polymerization-induced self-assembly (PISA) occurring via the growing PBzMA block to produce a range of PLMA-PBzMA diblock copolymer nano-objects, including spheres, worms, and vesicles. In the present study, particular attention is paid to the worm phase, which forms soft free-standing gels at 20 °C due to multiple inter-worm contacts. Such worm gels exhibit thermo-responsive behavior: heating above 50 °C causes degelation due to the onset of a worm-to-sphere transition. Degelation occurs because isotropic spheres interact with each other much less efficiently than the highly anisotropic worms. This worm-to-sphere thermal transition is essentially irreversible on heating a dilute solution (0.10% w/w) but is more or less reversible on heating a more concentrated dispersion (20% w/w). The relatively low volatility of n-dodecane facilitates variable-temperature rheological studies, which are consistent with eventual reconstitution of the worm phase on cooling to 20 °C. Variable-temperature (1)H NMR studies conducted in d26-dodecane confirm partial solvation of the PBzMA block at elevated temperature: surface plasticization of the worm cores is invoked to account for the observed change in morphology, because this is sufficient to increase the copolymer curvature and hence induce a worm-to-sphere transition. Small-angle X-ray scattering and TEM are used to investigate the structural changes that occur during the worm-to-sphere-to-worm thermal cycle; experiments conducted at 1.0 and 5.0% w/w demonstrate the concentration-dependent (ir)reversibility of these morphological transitions. PMID:24678949

  4. The impact of substrate interaction in directed self-assembly of symmetric diblock copolymer thin films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seidel, Robert

    Block copolymers (BCP) are a class of materials that have attracted significant attention due to their ability to self-assemble into dense arrays of nanoscale features. These materials are being investigated for their use in applications such as nanolithography, but for commercial implementation require the ability to control or direct the self-assembly process. Chemoepitaxial directed self-assembly (DSA) is one avenue to achieving this control, where a BCP thin film self-assembles in the presence of precisely defined chemical boundary conditions. In such a process, the equilibrium structure of the BCP film and the kinetic pathways it evolves along to reach equilibrium are both a function of the thermodynamic landscape, which is in turn controlled by the chemical pattern. This thesis contributes to the significant body of work attempting to detail the relationship between chemical pattern parameters and the thermodynamics of assembly (both kinetic and equilibrium). We restrict our investigation to the assembly of lamellae-forming diblock copolymers on line/space chemical patterns that employ density multiplication, with a focus on developing technology for nanopatterning beyond the resolution limit of traditional lithography. In the first chapter we introduce the fundamental ideas of BCP DSA and develop the concepts of free energy balance that are crucial to framing the discussion in the following chapters. The second chapter explores using poly(methyl methacrylate) as a guide material and shows how the greater strength of guiding interaction for this system has the ability to guide complex, frustrated non-bulk morphologies. The third chapter develops a novel concept of using process conditions to generate so-called 'three-tone' chemical patterns with multiple guiding regions per patterned stripe. The fourth chapter looks at how guide stripe strength impacts and affects assembly kinetics, equilibrium structure, and process metrics such as line edge roughness (LER

  5. Shear-induced sphere-to-cylinder transition in thin films of diblock copolymers and the role of wetting layers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chremos, Alexandros; Register, Richard; Chaikin, Paul; Panagiotopoulos, Athanassios

    2011-03-01

    The shear-induced sphere-to-cylinder transition in diblock copolymer thin films has been studied using large-scale coarse- grained Langevin dynamics simulations. At zero-shear conditions and below the order-disorder transition temperature the thin film forms a monolayer or bilayer of spheres given the thickness of the film. Mimicking the experimental setup the minority block has an affinity to be adsorbed on the confining surfaces forming brushes which interpenetrate the rest of the film. Once a shear field is applied and above a critical shear rate, the spheres elongate and merge with their neighbors to form cylinders. We find that the mechanism with which the spheres merge is closely related with the stretching of individual diblock chains. In particular, we find that in monolayer thin films it is more difficult to achieve the sphere-to-cylinder transition, which is also an experimental observation, because the brushes restrict the stretching of diblock chains. The simulations were performed with the use of Graphical Processing Units allowing large-scale simulations with long polymer chains to studied.

  6. Preparation and characterization of optical-functional diblock copolymer brushes on hollow sphere surface via atom transfer radical polymerization

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, Li-Ping; Li, Wen-Zhi; Zhao, Li-Min; Zhang, Chun-Juan; Wang, Yan-Dong; Kong, Li-Li; Li, Ling-Ling

    2010-09-15

    The optical-functional poly(methyl methacrylate)-block-Tb complex diblock copolymer brushes grafted from hollow sphere surface via atom transfer radical polymerization were investigated in this work. A sufficient amount of azo initiator was introduced onto hollow sphere surface firstly. Then the monomer methyl methacrylate was polymerized via surface-initiated reverse atom transfer radical polymerization using azo group modified hollow sphere as initiator. Following, the poly(methyl methacrylate) modified hollow sphere was used as maroinitiator for surface-initiated atom transfer radical polymerization of Tb complex. The samples were characterized by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, hydrogen nuclear magnetic resonance, gel permeation chromatographer and transmission electron microscopy, respectively. The results indicated that the poly(methyl methacrylate) had grafted from hollow sphere surface and the average diameter of hollow core was about 1 {mu}m. The optical properties of the poly(methyl methacrylate)-block-Tb copolymer modified hollow sphere were also reported.

  7. Rheological Evidence of Composition Fluctuations in an Unentangled Diblock Copolymer Melt near the Order-Disorder Transition

    SciTech Connect

    Kennemur, Justin G.; Hillmyer, Marc A.; Bates, Frank S.

    2014-02-13

    Rheological and small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) measurements were conducted on a symmetric, low molar mass (Mn = 17.6 kg/mol), poly(tert-butylstyrene-block-methyl methacrylate) (PtBS-PMMA) diblock copolymer near the order–disorder transition temperature (TODT = 193 ± 1 °C). Evidence of composition fluctuations is apparent in the low frequency elastic (G') and loss (G") moduli and in the temperature dependence of the peak scattering intensity, I(q*), up to 50 °C above the TODT. These findings demonstrate that chain entanglements are not responsible for the well-documented fluctuation mode in the terminal viscoelastic regime of block copolymer melts.

  8. Carbohydrates as additives for the formation of isoporous PS-b-P4VP diblock copolymer membranes.

    PubMed

    Clodt, Juliana Isabel; Rangou, Sofia; Schröder, Anne; Buhr, Kristian; Hahn, Janina; Jung, Adina; Filiz, Volkan; Abetz, Volker

    2013-01-25

    Highly porous polystyrene-block-poly(4-vinylpyridine) (PS-b-P4VP) diblock copolymer membranes are prepared using carbohydrates as additives. Therefore α-cyclodextrine, α-(D)-glucose, and saccharose (cane sugar) are tested for the membrane formation of three different PS-b-P4VP polymers. The addition of the carbohydrates leads to an increasing viscosity of the membrane solutions due to hydrogen bonding between hydroxyl groups of the carbohydrates and pyridine units of the block copolymer. In all cases, the membranes made from solution with carbohydrates have higher porosity, an improved narrow pore distribution on the surface and a higher water flux as membranes made without carbohydrates with the same polymer, solvent ratio, and polymer concentration. PMID:23225180

  9. Self-nucleation and crystallization kinetics of double crystalline poly(p-dioxanone)-b-poly(epsilon-caprolactone) diblock copolymers.

    PubMed

    Müller, Alejandro J; Albuerne, Julio; Marquez, Leni; Raquez, Jean-Marie; Degée, Philippe; Dubois, Philippe; Hobbs, Jamie; Hamley, Ian W

    2005-01-01

    The crystallization kinetics of each constituent of poly(p-dioxanone)-b-poly(epsilon-caprolactone) diblock copolymers (PPDX-b-PCL) has been determined in a wide composition range by differential scanning calorimetry and compared to that of the equivalent homopolymers. Spherulitic growth rates were also measured by polarized optical microscopy while atomic force microscopy was employed to reveal the morphology of one selected diblock copolymer. It was found that crystallization drives structure formation and both components form lamellae within mixed spherulitic superstructures. The overall isothermal crystallization kinetics of the PPDX block at high temperatures, where the PCL is molten, was determined by accelerating the kinetics through a previous self-nucleation procedure. The application of the Lauritzen and Hoffman theory to overall growth rate data yielded successful results for PPDX and the diblock copolymers. The theory was applied to isothermal overall crystallization of previously self-nucleated PPDX (where growth should be the dominant factor if self-nucleation was effective) and the energetic parameters obtained were perfectly matched with those obtained from spherulitic growth rate data of neat PPDX. A quantitative estimate of the increase in the energy barrier for crystallization of the PPDX block, caused by the covalently bonded molten PCL as compared to homo-PPDX, was thus determined. This energy increase can dramatically reduce the crystallization rate of the PPDX block as compared to homo-PPDX. In the case of the PCL block, both the crystallization kinetics and the self-nucleation results indicate that the PPDX is able to nucleate the PCL within the copolymers and heterogeneous nucleation is always present regardless of composition. Finally, preliminary results on hydrolytic degradation showed that the presence of relatively small amounts of PCL within PPDX-b-PCL copolymers substantially retards hydrolytic degradation of the material in

  10. Synthesis and characterization of a novel water-soluble cationic diblock copolymer with star conformation by ATRP.

    PubMed

    Li, Shuzhao; Xiao, Miaomiao; Zheng, Anna; Xiao, Huining

    2014-10-01

    A water-soluble cationic diblock copolymer, CD-PAM-b-PMeDMA, was synthesized through atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) from a β-cyclodextrin (CD) macroinitiator with 10-active sites (10Br-β-CD). In order to reduce the cytotoxicity of the CD-PAM-b-PMeDMA, biocompatible polyacrylamide (PAM) was first introduced onto the surface of β-CD as a scaffold structure by ATRP using the 10Br-β-CD as a macroinitiator. The reaction conditions of AM were explored and optimized. The ATRP of [2-(methacryloyloxy)ethyl] trimethyl ammonium chloride (MeDMA) was also performed to synthesize the second cationic block using the resulting CD-PAM as a macroinitiator. The resulting diblock copolymer shows an increased hydrodynamic radius in aqueous solution with a pretty low concentration compared with β-CD. In addition, it appears a near-uniform coniform after being deposited on mica ascribed to the presence of an asymmetric 10-arm structure. PMID:25175223

  11. Solid-State Nanostructured Materials from Self-Assembly of a Globular Protein-Polymer Diblock Copolymer

    PubMed Central

    Thomas, Carla S.; Glassman, Matthew J.; Olsen, Bradley D.

    2014-01-01

    Self-assembly of three-dimensional solid-state nanostructures containing approximately 33% by weight globular protein is demonstrated using a globular protein-polymer diblock copolymer, providing a route to direct nanopatterning of proteins for use in bioelectronic and biocatalytic materials. A mutant red fluorescent protein, mCherryS131C, was prepared by incorporation of a unique cysteine residue and site-specifically conjugated to end-functionalized poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) through thiol-maleimide coupling to form a well-defined model protein-polymer block copolymer. The block copolymer was self-assembled into bulk nanostructures by solvent evaporation from concentrated solutions. Small-angle X-ray scattering and transmission electron microscopy illustrated the formation of highly disordered lamellae or hexagonally perforated lamellae depending upon the selectivity of the solvent during evaporation. Solvent annealing of bulk samples resulted in a transition towards lamellar nanostructures with mCherry packed in a bilayer configuration and a large improvement in long range ordering. Wide-angle X-ray scattering indicated that mCherry did not crystallize within the block copolymer nanodomains and that the β-sheet spacing was not affected by self-assembly. Circular dichroism showed no change in protein secondary structure after self-assembly, while UV-vis spectroscopy indicated approximately 35% of the chromophore remained optically active. PMID:21696135

  12. Impact of chain microstructure on solution and thin film self-assembly of PCHD-based semi-flexible/flexible diblock copolymers.

    PubMed

    Bornani, Kamlesh; Wang, Xu; Davis, Jesse L; Wang, Xiaojun; Wang, Weiyu; Hinestrosa, Juan Pablo; Mays, Jimmy W; Kilbey, S Michael

    2015-08-28

    Self-assembly of semi-flexible/flexible block copolymers in a selective solvent is examined using a set of diblock copolymers where the chain microstructure of the semi-flexible block is manipulated in order to tune chain stiffness. Conceptually, the reduced conformational space of the semi-flexible block is anticipated to alter the way the chains pack, potentially changing the structure of self-assembled aggregates in comparison to flexible diblock copolymer analogs. Semi-flexible/flexible diblock copolymers comprised of poly(styrene)-block-poly(1,3-cyclohexadiene) (PS-b-PCHD) having systematic changes in chain microstructure, as captured by the ratio of 1,4/1,2-linkages between cyclohexenyl repeat units, and molecular weight of the PCHD blocks were synthesized using anionic polymerization. These diblocks were dissolved in tetrahydrofuran (THF), which is a preferential solvent for PS, and the structures formed were examined using laser light scattering and complementary imaging techniques. Results show that PS-b-PCHD copolymers with a chain microstructure of 90% 1,4/10% 1,2 linkages between cyclohexenyl repeat units (referred to simply as 90/10) are able to micellize, forming spherical structures, while diblocks of 70/30 and 50/50 1,4-to-1,2 ratios remain as single chains and ill-defined aggregates, respectively, when dissolved in THF. With inferences drawn from simple structural models, we speculate that this self-assembly behavior arises due to the change in the chain configuration with increasing content of 1,2-links in the backbone. This renders the chain with higher 1,2 content incapable of swelling in response to solvent and unable to pack into well-defined self-assembled structures. PMID:26186404

  13. Self-consistent field theory and numerical scheme for calculating the phase diagram of wormlike diblock copolymers.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Ying; Chen, Jeff Z Y

    2013-10-01

    This paper concerns establishing a theoretical basis and numerical scheme for studying the phase behavior of AB diblock copolymers made of wormlike chains. The general idea of a self-consistent field theory is the combination of the mean-field approach together with a statistical weight that describes the configurational properties of a polymer chain. In recent years, this approach has been extensively used for structural prediction of block copolymers, based on the Gaussian-model description of a polymer chain. The wormlike-chain model has played an important role in the description of polymer systems, covering the semiflexible-to-rod crossover of the polymer properties and the highly stretching regime, which the Gaussian-chain model has difficulties to describe. Although the idea of developing a self-consistent field theory for wormlike chains could be traced back to early development in polymer physics, the solution of such a theory has been limited due to technical difficulties. In particular, a challenge has been to develop a numerical algorithm enabling the calculation of the phase diagram containing three-dimensional structures for wormlike AB diblock copolymers. This paper describes a computational algorithm that combines a number of numerical tricks, which can be used for such a calculation. A phase diagram covering major parameter areas was constructed for the wormlike-chain system and reported by us, where the ratio between the total length and the persistence length of a constituent polymer is suggested as another tuning parameter for the microphase-separated structures; all detailed technical issues are carefully addressed in the current paper. PMID:24229202

  14. Synthesis and self-assembly of terpyridine end-capped poly(N-isopropylacrylamide)-block-poly(2-(dimethylamino)ethyl methacrylate) diblock copolymers.

    PubMed

    Brassinne, Jérémy; Poggi, Elio; Fustin, Charles-André; Gohy, Jean-François

    2015-04-01

    At the basis of smart self-assembled materials are lying small building blocks that can hierarchically assemble in response to stimuli, e.g., temperature or chemical species. In this context, the synthesis of terpyridine end-capped poly(2-(dimethylamino)ethyl methacrylate)-block-poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) diblock copolymers via controlled radical copolymerization is reported here. The self-assembly of those copolymers is investigated in dilute aqueous solutions while varying temperature or adding transition metal ions, respectively, leading to the formation of micellar nanostructures or metallosupramolecular triblock copolymers. PMID:25491079

  15. Phase Behavior and Ionic Conductivity of Concentrated Solutions of Polystyrene-Poly(ethylene oxide) Diblock Copolymers in an Ionic Liquid

    SciTech Connect

    Simone, Peter M.; Lodge, Timothy P.

    2010-03-16

    Concentrated solutions of poly(styrene-b-ethylene oxide) (PS-PEO) diblock copolymers were prepared using the ionic liquid 1-ethyl-3-methylimidazolium bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)imide [EMI][TFSI] as the solvent. The self-assembled microstructures adopted by the copolymer solutions have been characterized using small-angle X-ray scattering. Lyotropic mesophase transitions were observed, with a progression from hexagonally packed cylinders of PEO, to lamellae, to hexagonally packed cylinders of PS upon increasing [EMI][TFSI] content. The change in lamellar domain spacing with ionic liquid concentration was found to be comparable to that reported for other block copolymers in strongly selective solvents. The ionic conductivity of the concentrated PS-PEO/[EMI][TFSI] solutions was measured via impedance spectroscopy, and ranged from 1 x 10{sup -7} to 1 x 10{sup -3} S/cm at temperatures from 25-100 C. Additionally, the ionic conductivity of the solutions was found to increase with both ionic liquid concentration and molecular weight of the PEO blocks. The ionic conductivity of PEO homopolymer/[EMI][TFSI] solutions was also measured in order to compare the conductivity of the PS-PEO solutions to the expected limit for a lamellar sample with randomly oriented microstructure grains.

  16. Fluctuation Effects in AB/A/B Diblock Copolymer-Homopolymer Ternary Mixtures near the Lamellar-Disorder Transition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gillard, Timothy; Hickey, Robert; Habersberger, Brian; Lodge, Timothy; Bates, Frank

    2015-03-01

    Fluctuations profoundly influence the phase behavior of block polymer-based soft materials. In ternary blends of an AB diblock copolymer with A- and B-type homopolymers, fluctuations destroy a mean-field predicted higher-order multicritical Lifshitz point and lead to the formation of the technologically important polymeric bicontinuous microemulsion phase (B μE). Here we report a fascinating change in character of the lamellar-to-disorder phase transition as the composition of homopolymer in the ternary blend is increased from zero (neat diblock) to the onset of the B μE channel. As the B μE channel is approached, the transition exhibits increasingly second-order character with the development of large-scale fluctuating smectic correlations in the disordered state near the transition. This change in character of the transition is documented with a combination of scattering, optical transmission, rheology, and TEM experiments in model blends of poly(cyclohexylethylene- b-ethylene) with the constituent homopolymers.

  17. Novel Diblock Copolymer-Grafted Multiwalled Carbon Nanotubes via a combination of Living and Controlled/Living Surface Polymerizations

    SciTech Connect

    Priftis, Dimitrios; Sakellariou, Georgios; Mays, Jimmy; Hadjichristidis, Nikos

    2010-01-01

    Diels Alder cycloaddition reactions were used to functionalize multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWNTs) with 1-benzocylcobutene-10-phenylethylene (BCB-PE) or 4-hydroxyethylbenzocyclobutene (BCB-EO). The covalent functionalization of the nanotubes with these initiator precursors was verified by FTIR and thermogravimetric analysis (TGA). After appropriate transformations/additions, the functionalized MWNTs were used for surface initiated anionic and ring opening polymerizations of ethylene oxide and e-caprolactone (e-CL), respectively. The OH-end groups were transformed to isopropylbromide groups by reaction with 2-bromoisobutyryl bromide, for subsequent atom transfer radical polymerization of styrene or 2-dimethylaminoethyl methacrylate to afford the final diblock copolymers. 1H NMR, differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), TGA, and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) were used for the characterization of the nanocomposite materials. TEM images showed the presence of a polymer layer around the MWNTs as well as the dissociation of MWNT bundles. Consequently, this general methodology, employing combinations of different polymerization techniques, increases the diversity of diblocks that can be grafted from MWNTs.

  18. Quantitative Control of Pore Size of Mesoporous Carbon Nanospheres through the Self-Assembly of Diblock Copolymer Micelles in Solution.

    PubMed

    Tian, Hao; Lin, Zhixing; Xu, Fugui; Zheng, Jingxu; Zhuang, Xiaodong; Mai, Yiyong; Feng, Xinliang

    2016-06-01

    This paper reports facile synthesis of nitrogen-doped mesoporous carbon nanospheres (MCNSs) with average diameters of around 300 nm and well-controlled pore sizes ranging from 8 to 38 nm, by employing polystyrene-b-poly(ethylene oxide) (PS-b-PEO) diblocks with different PS block lengths as the soft templates and dopamine as the carbon-rich precursor. For the first time, a linear equation is achieved for the quantitative control of the average pore size of MCNSs by simply adjusting a block length of diblock copolymer. The resultant MCNSs possess high surface areas of up to 450 m(2) g(-1) and nitrogen doping contents of up to ≈3 wt%. As electrode materials of supercapacitors, the MCNSs exhibit excellent electrochemical performance with high specific capacitances of up to 350 F g(-1) at 0.1 A g(-1) , superior rate capability, and cycling stability. Interestingly, the specific capacitance of the MCNSs reduces linearly with increasing pore size, whereas the normalized capacitance by specific surface area remains invariable. This represents a new spectrum of the relationship between electrochemical capacitance and pore size (>5 nm) for porous carbons, which makes a complement to the existing spectra focusing on pore diameters of <5 nm. PMID:27120340

  19. Order and phase behavior of diblock copolymers and nano-particles mixture in confinement : A Molecular Dynamics study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shagolsem, Lenin S.; Sommer, Jens-Uwe

    2010-03-01

    Diblock copolymers(DBC) and nano-particles(NP) composite show new structures apart from that of a pure DBC. Interesting effects are observed when such composite are in confined geometries. For example, morphology changes, inhomogeneous NP distribution and its effect on the formation of ordered structures. We study, via MD simulation, a coarse grained model of cylinder forming DBC and NP composite confined between walls (which can be neutral or selective) with a particular focus towards an understanding of its order and phase behavior in this restricted environment. In particular, we investigate the effect of temperature on the NP enrichment near the walls also orientation of cylinders for different wall separation. Further, we study how the variation of NP volume fraction affects segregation and morphology.

  20. Ordered, microphase-separated, noncharged-charged diblock copolymers via the sequential ATRP of styrene and styrenic imidazolium monomers

    SciTech Connect

    Shi, ZX; Newell, BS; Bailey, TS; Gin, DL

    2014-12-15

    A series of imidazolium-based noncharged-charged diblock copolymers (1) was synthesized by the direct, sequential ATRP of styrene and styrenic imidazolium bis(trifluoromethyl)sulfonamide monomers with methyl, n-butyl, and n-decyl side-chains. Small-angle X-ray scattering studies on initial examples of 1 with a total of 50 repeat units and styrene:imidazolium-styrene repeat unit ratios of 25:25, 20:30, and 15:35 showed that their ability to form ordered nanostructures (i.e., sphere and cylinder phases) in their neat states depends on both the block ratio and the length of the alkyl side-chain on the imidazolium monomer. To our knowledge, the synthesis of imidazolium-based BCPs that form ordered, phase-separated nanostructures via direct ATRP of immiscible co-monomers is unprecedented. (C) 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Kinetics of Transition between HEX and Gyroid Phases in a Diblock Copolymer Solution in a Selective Solvent

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spring, Julian; Liu, Yongsheng; Bansil, Rama; Steinhart, Milos

    2010-03-01

    Synchrotron based time-resolved small angle x-ray scattering (SAXS), was used to study the kinetics of the formation of a gyroid phase in solutions of a poly (styrene - isoprene) diblock copolymer in dimethyl phthalate, a selective solvent for the polystyrene block. From temperature ramp measurements on a 75% (w/v) sample, a hexagonally-packed-cylinders (HEX) phase was identified below 110 C, a gyroid between 110 C and 150 C, above which the sample formed disordered spherical micelles. The kinetics of the transitions from HEX to gyroid, gyroid to disorder and disorder to gyroid was examined using temperature jump experiments over the temperature range of 5 165C. We found that the HEX to gyroid phase transition is irreversible, while gyroid to disorder is reversible. Detailed analysis of the time evolution of the Bragg peaks to follow the kinetics of the transition between these phases will be presented

  2. Self-Assembly of Charged Amphiphilic Diblock Copolymers with Insoluble Blocks of Decreasing Hydrophobicity: From Kinetically Frozen Colloids to Macrosurfactants

    SciTech Connect

    M Jacquin; P Muller; H Cottet; O Theodoly

    2011-12-31

    We have investigated the self-assembly properties in aqueous solution of amphiphilic diblock copolymers with insoluble blocks of different hydrophobicity and demonstrated that the condition to obtain dynamic micelles is to design samples with insoluble blocks of low enough hydrophobicity. We focus here on results with new water-soluble amphiphilic diblock copolymers poly(diethyleneglycol ethylether acrylate)-b-poly(acrylic acid), or PDEGA-b-PAA. The physical characteristics of PDEGA-b-PAA micelles at high ionization have been determined by small angle neutron scattering (SANS). We show that PDEGA-b-PAA samples form micelles at thermodynamic equilibrium. The critical micelle concentrations (CMCs) decrease strongly with ionic strength and temperature due to a solvent quality decrease for, respectively, the corona and the core. This behavior of reversible aggregation is remarkable as compared to the behavior of kinetically frozen aggregation that has been widely observed with samples of similar architecture and different hydrophobic blocks, for example, poly(styrene)-b-poly(acrylic acid), PS-b-PAA, and poly(butyl acrylate)-b-poly(acrylic acid), PBA-b-PAA. We have measured the interfacial tension between water and the homopolymers PDEGA and PBA at, respectively, 3 and 20 mN/m at room temperature, which permits one to estimate the energy cost to extract a unimer from a micelle. The results are consistent with a micelle association that is fast for PDEGA-b-PAA and kinetically frozen PBA-b-PAA. Hence, PDEGA-b-PAA samples form a new system of synthetic charged macrosurfactant with unique properties of fast dynamic association, tunable charge, and water solubility even at temperatures and NaCl concentrations as high as 65 C and 1 M.

  3. End-Functionalized Polymers and Junction-Functionalized Diblock Copolymers Via RAFT Chain Extension with Maleimido Monomers

    PubMed Central

    Henry, Scott M.; Convertine, Anthony J.; Benoit, Danielle S. W.; Hoffman, Allan S.; Stayton, Patrick S.

    2010-01-01

    A new strategy is described for functionalizing the ω-terminal end of polymers synthesized by reversible addition–fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization that provides spatially controlled bioconjugation sites. Traditional methods for preparing ω-functional polymers require the reduction of the RAFT chain-transfer agent to yield secondary or tertiary thiols of low reactivity or the synthesis of novel chain-transfer agents that contain reactive groups. As an additional strategy, N-substituted maleimido monomers have been used in a modified block polymerization to add a single maleimido unit onto the RAFT polymer with nearly quantitative efficiency. Unique reactive groups contained in the N-substituent are thereby added to the ω-terminal end of the polymer and are subsequently available for conjugation reactions. This technique has been demonstrated using N-(2-aminoethyl)maleimide trifluoroacetate to introduce a single primary amine to the ω-terminus of poly(dimethy-laminoethyl methacrylate) and poly(N-isopropyl acrylamide) and to a specialized block copolymer for siRNA delivery. Evidence for retention of functional RAFT endgroups is provided by synthesis results where chain-extended polyDMAEMA (Mn = 10 600 g/mol, Mw/Mn = 1.14) was used as a macro chain transfer agent for the polymerization of styrene, yielding a diblock polymer of low polydispersity (Mn = 20 300 g/mol, Mw/Mn = 1.11). It is thus also possible to construct diblock copolymers with a bioconjugation site precisely located at the junction between the two blocks. The chain-extended polymers are functionalized with an amine-reactive fluorescent dye or folic acid at conjugation efficiencies of 86 and 94%, respectively. The versatile chain-extension technique described here offers unique opportunities for the synthesis of well-defined polymeric conjugates to molecules of biological and targeting interest. PMID:19480416

  4. Bespoke contrast-matched diblock copolymer nanoparticles enable the rational design of highly transparent Pickering double emulsions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rymaruk, Matthew J.; Thompson, Kate L.; Derry, Matthew J.; Warren, Nicholas J.; Ratcliffe, Liam P. D.; Williams, Clive N.; Brown, Steven L.; Armes, Steven P.

    2016-07-01

    We report the preparation of highly transparent oil-in-water Pickering emulsions using contrast-matched organic nanoparticles. This is achieved via addition of judicious amounts of either sucrose or glycerol to an aqueous dispersion of poly(glycerol monomethacrylate)56-poly(2,2,2-trifluoroethyl methacrylate)500 [PGMA-PTFEMA] diblock copolymer nanoparticles prior to high shear homogenization with an equal volume of n-dodecane. The resulting Pickering emulsions comprise polydisperse n-dodecane droplets of 20-100 μm diameter and exhibit up to 96% transmittance across the visible spectrum. In contrast, control experiments using non-contrast-matched poly(glycerol monomethacrylate)56-poly(benzyl methacrylate)300 [PGMA56-PBzMA300] diblock copolymer nanoparticles as a Pickering emulsifier only produced conventional highly turbid emulsions. Thus contrast-matching of the two immiscible phases is a necessary but not sufficient condition for the preparation of highly transparent Pickering emulsions: it is essential to use isorefractive nanoparticles in order to minimize light scattering. Furthermore, highly transparent oil-in-water-in-oil Pickering double emulsions can be obtained by homogenizing the contrast-matched oil-in-water Pickering emulsion prepared using the PGMA56-PTFEMA500 nanoparticles with a contrast-matched dispersion of hydrophobic poly(lauryl methacrylate)39-poly(2,2,2-trifluoroethyl methacrylate)800 [PLMA39-PTFEMA800] diblock copolymer nanoparticles in n-dodecane. Finally, we show that an isorefractive oil-in-water Pickering emulsion enables fluorescence spectroscopy to be used to monitor the transport of water-insoluble small molecules (pyrene and benzophenone) between n-dodecane droplets. Such transport is significantly less efficient than that observed for the equivalent isorefractive surfactant-stabilized emulsion. Conventional turbid emulsions do not enable such a comparison to be made because the intense light scattering leads to substantial spectral

  5. Thermodynamics of Polymer Adsorption onto Nanoporous Silica and its Application in the Large Scale Purification of Poly(styrene)-block-Poly(alkyl methacrylate) Diblock Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abdulahad, Asem Irfan

    As a result of unavoidable inconsistencies in their synthesis via controlled radical polymerization techniques, block copolymers inherently have distributions in chemical composition and molecular weight in each block that can have significant impact on their viscoelastic properties as well as their ability to self-assemble into ordered phases. High performance liquid chromatography is routinely utilized for determining the average molecular weight distribution that exist in synthetic polymers and is becoming increasingly popular for the fractionation and purification of chemically diverse complex polymer materials such as diblock copolymers. However, the inability of HPLC fractionation to provide meaningful quantities of purified complex polymers makes this method extremely inefficient and limits the ability to characterize purified fractions further. Overall, this dissertation work can be digested in two distinct parts. In the first part, high performance liquid chromatography was used as a tool for studying the influential parameters affecting the critical adsorption point of poly(styrene) and poly(alkyl methacrylate) homopolymers. The understanding gained in the first portion was depended on for the development of large scale fractionation procedures. In the second part, a chemically diverse variety of poly(alkyl methacrylate)-block-poly(styrene) diblock copolymers synthesized by atom transfer radical polymerization and anionic polymerization were purified by large scale adsorption-based fractionation procedures that included chromatographic filtration and the sequential adsorption/desorption of bulk diblock copolymer materials. The impact of diblock copolymer purification is addressed by comparing the molecular weight distribution, chemical composition distribution, viscoelastic properties, and small-angle X-ray scattering profiles.

  6. Durability and performance of polystyrene- b -poly(vinylbenzyl trimethylammonium) diblock copolymer and equivalent blend anion exchange membranes

    SciTech Connect

    Vandiver, Melissa A.; Caire, Benjamin R.; Poskin, Zach; Li, Yifan; Seifert, Sönke; Knauss, Daniel M.; Herring, Andrew M.; Liberatore, Matthew W.

    2014-11-01

    Anion exchange membranes (AEM) are solid polymer electrolytes that facilitate ion transport in fuel cells. In this study, a polystyrene-b-poly(vinylbenzyl trimethylammonium) diblock copolymer was evaluated as potential AEM and compared with the equivalent homopolymer blend. The diblock had a 92% conversion of reactive sites with an IEC of 1.72 ± 0.05 mmol g-1, while the blend had a 43% conversion for an IEC of 0.80 ± 0.03 mmol g-1. At 50°C and 95% relative humidity, the chloride conductivity of the diblock was higher, 24–33 mS cm-1, compared with the blend, 1–6 mS cm-1. The diblock displayed phase separation on the length scale of 100 nm, while the blend displayed microphase separation (~10 μm). Mechanical characterization of films from 40 to 90 microns thick found that elasticity and elongation decreased with the addition of cations to the films. At humidified conditions, water acted as a plasticizer to increase film elasticity and elongation. While the polystyrene-based diblock displayed sufficient ionic conductivity, the films' mechanical properties require improvement, i.e., greater elasticity and strength, before use in fuel cells. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 2015, 132, 41596.

  7. Phase behavior of a mixture of poly(isoprene)-poly(oxyethylene) diblock copolymer and poly(oxyethylene) surfactant in water.

    PubMed

    Kunieda, Hironobu; Kaneko, Masaya; López-Quintela, M Arturo; Tsukahara, Masahiko

    2004-03-16

    The phase behavior of a mixture of poly(isoprene)-poly(oxyethylene) diblock copolymer (PI-PEO or C250EO70) and poly(oxyethylene) surfactant (C12EO3, C12EO5, C12EO6, C12EO7, and C12EO9) in water was investigated by phase study, small-angle X-ray scattering, and dynamic light scattering (DLS). The copolymer is not soluble in surfactant micellar cubic (I1), hexagonal (H1), and lamellar (Lalpha) liquid crystals, whereas an isotropic copolymer fluid phase coexists with these liquid crystals. Although the PI-PEO is relatively lipophilic, it increases the cloud temperatures of C12EO3-9 aqueous solutions at a relatively high PI-PEO content in the mixture. Most probably, in the copolymer-rich region, PI-PEO and C12EOn form a spherical composite micelle in which surfactant molecules are located at the interface and the PI chains form an oil pool inside. In the C12EO5/ and C12EO6/PI-PEO systems, one kind of micelles is produced in the wide range of mixing fraction, although macroscopic phase separation was observed within a few days after the sample preparation. On the other hand, small surfactant micelles coexist with copolymer giant micelles in C12EO7/ and C12EO9/PI-PEO aqueous solutions in the surfactant-rich region. The micellar shape and size are calculated using simple geometrical relations and compared with DLS data. Consequently, a large PI-PEO molecule is not soluble in surfactant bilayers (Lalpha phase), infinitely long rod micelles (H1 phase), and spherical micelles (I1 phase or hydrophilic spherical micelles) as a result of the packing constraint of the large PI chain. However, the copolymer is soluble in surfactant rod micelles (C12EO5 and C12EO6) because a rod-sphere transition of the surfactant micelles takes place and the long PI chains are incorporated inside the large spherical micelles. PMID:15835666

  8. Preparations, Properties, and Applications of Periodic Nano Arrays using Anodized Aluminum Oxide and Di-block Copolymer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Noh, Kunbae

    2011-12-01

    Self-ordered arrangements observed in various materials systems such as anodic aluminum oxide, polystyrene nanoparticles, and block copolymer are of great interest in terms of providing new opportunities in nanofabrication field where lithographic techniques are broadly used in general. Investigations on self-assembled nano arrays to understand how to obtain periodic nano arrays in an efficient yet inexpensive way, and how to realize advanced material and device systems thereof, can lead to significant impacts on science and technology for many forefront device applications. In this thesis, various aspects of periodic nano-arrays have been discussed including novel preparations, properties and applications of anodized aluminum oxide (AAO) and PS-b-P4VP (S4VP) di-block copolymer self-assembly. First, long-range ordered AAO arrays have been demonstrated. Nanoimprint lithography (NIL) process allowed a faithful pattern transfer of the imprint mold pattern onto Al thin film, and interesting self-healing and pattern tripling phenomena were observed, which could be applicable towards fabrication of the NIL master mold having highly dense pattern over large area, useful for fabrication of a large-area substrate for predictable positioning of arrayed devices. Second, S4VP diblock copolymer self-assembly and S4VP directed AAO self-assembly have been demonstrated in the Al thin film on Si substrate. Such a novel combination of two dissimilar self-assembly techniques demonstrated a potential as a versatile tool for nanopatterning formation on a Si substrate, capable of being integrated into Si process technology. As exemplary applications, vertically aligned Ni nanowires have been synthesized into an S4VP-guided AAO membrane on a Si substrate in addition to anti-dot structured [Co/Pd]n magnetic multilayer using S4VP self assembly. Third, a highly hexagonally ordered, vertically parallel aluminum oxide nanotube array was successfully fabricated via hard anodization technique

  9. One-pot glovebox-free synthesis, characterization, and self-assembly of novel amphiphilic poly(sarcosine-b-caprolactone) diblock copolymers.

    PubMed

    Cui, Saide; Wang, Xin; Li, Zhenjiang; Zhang, Qiguo; Wu, Wenzhuo; Liu, Jingjing; Wu, Hao; Chen, Cheng; Guo, Kai

    2014-11-01

    Novel amphiphilic polypeptoid-polyester diblock copolymers based on poly(sarcosine) (PSar) and poly(ε-caprolactone) (PCL) are synthesized by a one-pot glovebox-free approach. In this method, sarcosine N-carboxy anhydride (Sar-NCA) is firstly polymerized in the presence of benzylamine under N(2) flow, then the resulting poly(sarcosine) is used in situ as the macro-initiator for the ring-opening polymerization (ROP) of ε-caprolactone using tin(II) octanoate as a catalyst. The degree of poly-merization of each block is controlled by various feed ratios of monomer/initiator. The diblock copolymers with controlled molecular weight and narrow molecular weight distributions (Đ(M) < 1.2) are characterized by (1)H NMR, (13)C NMR, and size-exclusion chromatography. The self-assembly behavior of PSar-b-PCL in water is investigated by dynamic light scattering (DLS) and transmission electron microscopy. DLS results reveal that the diblock copolymers associate into nanoparticles with average hydrodynamic diameters (D(H)) around 100 nm in water, which may be used as drug delivery carriers. PMID:25283643

  10. Tailored Assemblies of Rod-Coil Poly(3-hexylthiophene)-b-Polystyrene Diblock Copolymers: Adaptable Building Blocks for High-Performance Organic Field-Effect Transistors

    SciTech Connect

    Xiao, Kai; Yu, Xiang; Chen, Jihua; Lavrik, Nickolay V; Hong, Kunlun; Sumpter, Bobby; Geohegan, David B

    2011-01-01

    The self-assembly process and resulting structure of a series of conductive diblock copolymer thin films of Poly(3-hexylthiophene)-b-Polystyrene (P3HT-b-PS) have been studied by TEM, SAED, GIXD and AFM and additionally by first principles modeling and simulation. By varying the molecular weight of the P3HT segment, these block copolymers undergo microphase separation and self-assemble into nanostructured sphere, lamellae, nanofiber, and nanoribbon in the films. Within the diblock copolymer thin film, the convalently bonded PS blocks segregated to form amorphous domains, however, the conductive P3HT blocks were crystalline, exhibiting highly-ordered molecular packing with their alkyl side chains aligned along to the normal to the substrate and the - stacking direction of the thiophene rings aligned parallel to the substrate. The conductive P3HY block copolymers exhibited significant improvements in organic feild-effect transistor (OFET) performance and environmental stability as compared to P3HT homopolymers, with up to a factor of two increase in measured moblity (0.08 cm2/Vs ) for the P4 (85 wt% P3HT). Overall, this work demonstrates that the high degree of molecular order induced by bock copolymer phase separation can improve the transport properties and stability of conductive polymer critical for high-performance OFET s.

  11. Sequentially Different AB Diblock and ABA Triblock Copolymers as P3HT:PCBM Interfacial Compatibilizers for Bulk-Heterojunction Photovoltaics.

    PubMed

    Fujita, Hiroyuki; Michinobu, Tsuyoshi; Fukuta, Seijiro; Koganezawa, Tomoyuki; Higashihara, Tomoya

    2016-03-01

    The P3HT:PCBM (P3HT = poly(3-hexylthiophene, PCBM = phenyl-C61-butyric acid methyl ester) bulk-heterojunction (BHJ) organic photovoltaic (OPV) cells using the AB diblock and ABA triblock copolymers (A = polystyrene derivative with donor-acceptor units (PTCNE) and B = P3HT) as compatibilizers were fabricated. Under the optimized blend ratio of the block copolymer, the power conversion efficiency (PCE) was enhanced. This PCE enhancement was clearly related to the increased short-circuit current (J(sc)) and fill factor (FF). The incident photon to current efficiency (IPCE) measurement suggested that the P3HT crystallinity was improved upon addition of the block copolymers. The increased P3HT crystallinity was consistent with the increased photovoltaic parameters, such as J(sc), FF, and consequently the PCE. The surface energies of these block copolymers suggested their thermodynamically stable location at the interface of P3HT:PCBM, showing the efficient compatibilizing performance, resulting in enlarging and fixing the interfacial area and suppressing the recombination of the generated carriers. Grazing incidence X-ray scattering (GIXS) results confirmed the superior compatibilizing performance of the ABA triblock copolymer when compared to the AB diblock copolymer by the fact that, after blending the ABA triblock copolymer in the P3HT:PCBM system, the enhanced crystallinity of matrix P3HT was observed in the excluded areas of the less-aggregated PCBM domains, changing the P3HT crystalline domain orientation from "edge-on" to "isotropic". This is, to the best of our knowledge, the first sequential effect (AB vs ABA) of the block copolymers on the compatibilizing performances based on BHJ OPV device systems. PMID:26864393

  12. Synthesis and self-assembly of biodegradable polyethylene glycol-poly (lactic acid) diblock copolymers as polymersomes for preparation of sustained release system of doxorubicin

    PubMed Central

    Alibolandi, Mona; Sadeghi, Fatemeh; Sazmand, Seyed Hossein; Shahrokhi, Seyed Mohammad; Seifi, Mahmoud; Hadizadeh, Farzin

    2015-01-01

    Introduction: The copolymer of polyethylene glycol (PEG) and polyesters has many interesting properties, such as amphiphilicity, biocompatibility, biodegradability, and self-assembly in an aqueous environment. Diblock copolymers of PEG-polyester can form different structures such as micelles, polymersome, capsules or micro-container in an aqueous environment according to the length of their blocks. Materials and Methods: Herein, a series of poly (lactic acid) (PLA) and PEG diblock copolymers were synthesized through the ring-opening polymerization. The polymerization reaction and the copolymer structures were evaluated by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and gel permeation chromatography (GPC). The corresponding copolymers were implemented for the formation of polymersome structures using film rehydration method. Impact of methoxy PEG chain length and hydrophobic weight fraction on particle size of polymersomes were studied, and the proper ones were selected for loading of doxorubicin (DOX) via pH gradient method. Results and Discussion: Results obtained from 1HNMR and GPC revealed that microwave irradiation is a simple and reliable method for the synthesis of PEG-PLA copolymers. Further analysis indicated the copolymer with relative molecular weight of PLA to PEG ratios of 3 or fEo ~ 25% produced the smallest size polymersomes. Polymersomes prepared from PEG5000 to PLA15000 were more capable in loading and sustained release of DOX than those prepared from PEG2000 to PLA6000. Conclusion: In conclusion copolymers of PEG/PLA with fOE ~25% and relatively higher molecular weight are more suitable for encapsulation and providing sustained release of DOX. PMID:26258054

  13. Effect of composition fluctuations on tracer diffusion in symmetric diblock copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kannan, Rangaramanujam M.; Su, Jie; Lodge, Timothy P.

    1998-03-01

    We report forced Rayleigh scattering measurements of the tracer diffusion of poly(ethylenepropylene) (PEP) homopolymers in nearly symmetric poly(ethylenepropylene)-b-poly(ethylethylene) (PEP-PEE) block copolymer matrices, both above and below the order-disorder transition. Measurements of PEP-PEE copolymer diffusion in the same matrices have been reported previously. The results indicate that fluctuations suppress diffusion of both homopolymer and copolymer tracers, as predicted by recent theories. However, in the quenched ordered state, diffusion suppression is considerably stronger for block copolymer tracers than for homopolymer tracers, which appears to be counter to theoretical expectation. Varying the tracer molecular weight has little effect on the suppression of homopolymer diffusion, whereas it has a substantial effect on copolymer tracer diffusion. These differences are attributed to differential chain localization or confinement: an entangled copolymer tracer tends to be pinned near the interface between microdomains, and has to pay a significant enthalpic penalty for diffusion in any direction, as the reptating chain has to drag one block through the other microdomain. On the other hand, although a homopolymer tracer tends to be located within one microdomain, it can presumably diffuse across several grains without penalty, by reptating predominantly within a single lamella.

  14. RAFT aqueous dispersion polymerization yields poly(ethylene glycol)-based diblock copolymer nano-objects with predictable single phase morphologies.

    PubMed

    Warren, Nicholas J; Mykhaylyk, Oleksandr O; Mahmood, Daniel; Ryan, Anthony J; Armes, Steven P

    2014-01-22

    A poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) macromolecular chain transfer agent (macro-CTA) is prepared in high yield (>95%) with 97% dithiobenzoate chain-end functionality in a three-step synthesis starting from a monohydroxy PEG113 precursor. This PEG113-dithiobenzoate is then used for the reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) aqueous dispersion polymerization of 2-hydroxypropyl methacrylate (HPMA). Polymerizations conducted under optimized conditions at 50 °C led to high conversions as judged by (1)H NMR spectroscopy and relatively low diblock copolymer polydispersities (M(w)/M(n) < 1.25) as judged by GPC. The latter technique also indicated good blocking efficiencies, since there was minimal PEG113 macro-CTA contamination. Systematic variation of the mean degree of polymerization of the core-forming PHPMA block allowed PEG113-PHPMA(x) diblock copolymer spheres, worms, or vesicles to be prepared at up to 17.5% w/w solids, as judged by dynamic light scattering and transmission electron microscopy studies. Small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) analysis revealed that more exotic oligolamellar vesicles were observed at 20% w/w solids when targeting highly asymmetric diblock compositions. Detailed analysis of SAXS curves indicated that the mean number of membranes per oligolamellar vesicle is approximately three. A PEG113-PHPMA(x) phase diagram was constructed to enable the reproducible targeting of pure phases, as opposed to mixed morphologies (e.g., spheres plus worms or worms plus vesicles). This new RAFT PISA formulation is expected to be important for the rational and efficient synthesis of a wide range of biocompatible, thermo-responsive PEGylated diblock copolymer nano-objects for various biomedical applications. PMID:24400622

  15. RAFT Aqueous Dispersion Polymerization Yields Poly(ethylene glycol)-Based Diblock Copolymer Nano-Objects with Predictable Single Phase Morphologies

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    A poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) macromolecular chain transfer agent (macro-CTA) is prepared in high yield (>95%) with 97% dithiobenzoate chain-end functionality in a three-step synthesis starting from a monohydroxy PEG113 precursor. This PEG113-dithiobenzoate is then used for the reversible addition–fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) aqueous dispersion polymerization of 2-hydroxypropyl methacrylate (HPMA). Polymerizations conducted under optimized conditions at 50 °C led to high conversions as judged by 1H NMR spectroscopy and relatively low diblock copolymer polydispersities (Mw/Mn < 1.25) as judged by GPC. The latter technique also indicated good blocking efficiencies, since there was minimal PEG113 macro-CTA contamination. Systematic variation of the mean degree of polymerization of the core-forming PHPMA block allowed PEG113-PHPMAx diblock copolymer spheres, worms, or vesicles to be prepared at up to 17.5% w/w solids, as judged by dynamic light scattering and transmission electron microscopy studies. Small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) analysis revealed that more exotic oligolamellar vesicles were observed at 20% w/w solids when targeting highly asymmetric diblock compositions. Detailed analysis of SAXS curves indicated that the mean number of membranes per oligolamellar vesicle is approximately three. A PEG113-PHPMAx phase diagram was constructed to enable the reproducible targeting of pure phases, as opposed to mixed morphologies (e.g., spheres plus worms or worms plus vesicles). This new RAFT PISA formulation is expected to be important for the rational and efficient synthesis of a wide range of biocompatible, thermo-responsive PEGylated diblock copolymer nano-objects for various biomedical applications. PMID:24400622

  16. Aqueous self-assembly of poly(ethylene oxide)-block-poly(ε-caprolactone) (PEO-b-PCL) copolymers: disparate diblock copolymer compositions give rise to nano- and meso-scale bilayered vesicles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qi, Wei; Ghoroghchian, P. Peter; Li, Guizhi; Hammer, Daniel A.; Therien, Michael J.

    2013-10-01

    Nanoparticles formed from diblock copolymers of FDA approved PEO and PCL have generated considerable interest as in vivo drug delivery vehicles. Herein, we report the synthesis of the most extensive family PEO-b-PCL copolymers that vary over the largest range of number-average molecular weights (Mn: 3.6-57k), PEO weight fractions (fPEO: 0.08-0.33), and PEO chain lengths (0.75-5.8k) reported to date. These polymers were synthesized in order to establish the full range of aqueous phase behaviours of these diblock copolymers and to specifically identify formulations that were able to generate bilayered vesicles (polymersomes). Cryogenic transmission electron microscopy (cryo-TEM) was utilized in order to visualize the morphology of these structures upon aqueous self-assembly of dry polymer films. Nanoscale polymersomes were formed from PEO-b-PCL copolymers over a wide range of PEO weight fractions (fPEO: 0.14-0.27) and PEO molecular weights (0.75-3.8k) after extrusion of aqueous suspensions. Comparative morphology diagrams, which describe the nature of self-assembled structures as a function of diblock copolymer molecular weight and PEO weight fraction, show that in contrast to micron-scale polymersomes, which form only from a limited range of PEO-b-PCL diblock copolymer compositions, a multiplicity of PEO-b-PCL diblock copolymer compositions are able to give rise to nanoscale vesicles. These data underscore that PEO-b-PCL compositions that spontaneously form micron-sized polymersomes, as well as those that have previously been reported to form polymersomes via a cosolvent fabrication system, provide only limited insights into the distribution of PEO-b-PCL diblocks that give rise to nanoscale vesicles. The broad range of polymersome-forming PEO-b-PCL compositions described herein suggest the ability to construct extensive families of nanoscale vesicles of varied bilayer thickness, providing the ability to tune the timescales of vesicle degradation and encapsulant

  17. Synthesis of Diblock copolymer poly-3-hydroxybutyrate -block-poly-3-hydroxyhexanoate [PHB-b-PHHx] by a β-oxidation weakened Pseudomonas putida KT2442

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Block polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA) were reported to be resistant against polymer aging that negatively affects polymer properties. Recently, more and more attempts have been directed to make PHA block copolymers. Diblock copolymers PHB-b-PHHx consisting of poly-3-hydroxybutyrate (PHB) block covalently bonded with poly-3-hydroxyhexanoate (PHHx) block were for the first time produced successfully by a recombinant Pseudomonas putida KT2442 with its β-oxidation cycle deleted to its maximum. Results The chloroform extracted polymers were characterized by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), thermo- and mechanical analysis. NMR confirmed the existence of diblock copolymers consisting of 58 mol% PHB as the short chain length block with 42 mol% PHHx as the medium chain length block. The block copolymers had two glass transition temperatures (Tg) at 2.7°C and −16.4°C, one melting temperature (Tm) at 172.1°C and one cool crystallization temperature (Tc) at 69.1°C as revealed by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), respectively. This is the first microbial short-chain-length (scl) and medium-chain-length (mcl) PHA block copolymer reported. Conclusions It is possible to produce PHA block copolymers of various kinds using the recombinant Pseudomonas putida KT2442 with its β-oxidation cycle deleted to its maximum. In comparison to a random copolymer poly-3-hydroxybutyrate-co-3-hydroxyhexanoate (P(HB-co-HHx)) and a blend sample of PHB and PHHx, the PHB-b-PHHx showed improved structural related mechanical properties. PMID:22480145

  18. pH-Responsive Non-Ionic Diblock Copolymers: Ionization of Carboxylic Acid End-Groups Induces an Order–Order Morphological Transition**

    PubMed Central

    Lovett, Joseph R; Warren, Nicholas J; Ratcliffe, Liam P D; Kocik, Marzena K; Armes, Steven P

    2015-01-01

    A carboxylic acid based reversible additionfragmentation transfer (RAFT) agent is used to prepare gels composed of worm-like diblock copolymers using two non-ionic monomers, glycerol monomethacrylate (GMA) and 2-hydroxypropyl methacrylate (HPMA). Ionization of the carboxylic acid end-group on the PGMA stabilizer block induces a worm-to-sphere transition, which in turn causes immediate degelation. This morphological transition is fully reversible as determined by TEM and rheology studies and occurs because of a subtle change in the packing parameter for the copolymer chains. A control experiment where the methyl ester derivative of the RAFT agent is used to prepare the same diblock copolymer confirms that no pH-responsive behavior occurs in this case. This end-group ionization approach is important for the design of new pH-responsive copolymer nano-objects as, unlike polyacids or polybases, only a minimal amount of added base (or acid) is required to drive the morphological transition. PMID:25418214

  19. pH-responsive non-ionic diblock copolymers: ionization of carboxylic acid end-groups induces an order-order morphological transition.

    PubMed

    Lovett, Joseph R; Warren, Nicholas J; Ratcliffe, Liam P D; Kocik, Marzena K; Armes, Steven P

    2015-01-19

    A carboxylic acid based reversible additionfragmentation transfer (RAFT) agent is used to prepare gels composed of worm-like diblock copolymers using two non-ionic monomers, glycerol monomethacrylate (GMA) and 2-hydroxypropyl methacrylate (HPMA). Ionization of the carboxylic acid end-group on the PGMA stabilizer block induces a worm-to-sphere transition, which in turn causes immediate degelation. This morphological transition is fully reversible as determined by TEM and rheology studies and occurs because of a subtle change in the packing parameter for the copolymer chains. A control experiment where the methyl ester derivative of the RAFT agent is used to prepare the same diblock copolymer confirms that no pH-responsive behavior occurs in this case. This end-group ionization approach is important for the design of new pH-responsive copolymer nano-objects as, unlike polyacids or polybases, only a minimal amount of added base (or acid) is required to drive the morphological transition. PMID:25418214

  20. Molecular dynamics simulation of electric-field-induced self-assembly of diblock copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Qiuzhi; Xu, Rui; Kan, Di; He, Xuehao

    2016-06-01

    The self-assembly of block copolymers under an external electric field was studied with a coarse-grained polarizable model that hybridizes the conventional polymeric coarse-grained model and Drude oscillator. The polarizability of the coarse-grained polymeric segment was reflected by the Drude oscillator. Applying this model, the alignment of the lamellar phase of the block copolymer melt under an external electric field was observed and the dynamic coupling information between chain polarization and interface orientation induced by the external electric field was obtained. It is demonstrated that the alignment of the lamellar structure along the electric field direction results from the polarizability difference of the polymer components. Finally, the transitions of phase structures of the block copolymer under an external electric field, from spherical phase to cylindrical phase, from gyroid structure to cylindrical phase, and from gyroid structure to lamellae phase were simulated. The specific evolution pathways were shown.

  1. Molecular dynamics simulation of electric-field-induced self-assembly of diblock copolymers.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Qiuzhi; Xu, Rui; Kan, Di; He, Xuehao

    2016-06-21

    The self-assembly of block copolymers under an external electric field was studied with a coarse-grained polarizable model that hybridizes the conventional polymeric coarse-grained model and Drude oscillator. The polarizability of the coarse-grained polymeric segment was reflected by the Drude oscillator. Applying this model, the alignment of the lamellar phase of the block copolymer melt under an external electric field was observed and the dynamic coupling information between chain polarization and interface orientation induced by the external electric field was obtained. It is demonstrated that the alignment of the lamellar structure along the electric field direction results from the polarizability difference of the polymer components. Finally, the transitions of phase structures of the block copolymer under an external electric field, from spherical phase to cylindrical phase, from gyroid structure to cylindrical phase, and from gyroid structure to lamellae phase were simulated. The specific evolution pathways were shown. PMID:27334188

  2. Directed self-assembly of diblock copolymers in multi-VIA configurations: effect of chemopatterned substrates on defectivity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carpenter, Corinne L.; Delaney, Kris T.; Fredrickson, Glenn H.

    2016-03-01

    Directed self-assembly (DSA) of block copolymers has gained much attention for its potential as a low-cost, high-throughput patterning tool to supplement existing lithographic techniques, and in particular for its ability to easily pattern vertical interconnect accesses (VIAs).1 Single-hole shrink has been extensively explored, but the continued push towards higher-resolution patterns requires more efficient, less space-consuming approaches. The lithographic resolution limits the minimum distance between two features, and the single-hole templates take up valuable real estate on the wafer.2 To accommodate denser features and relax the resolution requirements of the lithographic techniques, it is prudent to move to multi-VIA configurations in which two or more features are assembled in a single guiding template (such as a peanut,3 or a rounded rectangle4). This allows considerably denser feature patterning, but comes at the cost of more plentiful and complicated defect modes than those found in single-hole shrink features. Most systems contain persistent horizontal structures (eg. rings, U-defects, or bars as shown in Figure 1) that prove detrimental to the etch process and yield undesirable configurations. Largely unexplored is the tandem use of chemoepitaxy and graphoepitaxy to suppress defect modes in multi- VIA templates. Specifically, chemically selective patterning of the substrate beneath a template could act synergistically with the template's lateral guidance to lower defectivity. In this study, we use three-dimensional self-consistent field theory (SCFT) simulations to investigate the equilibrium and metastable defective configurations of di-block copolymer DSA systems in the presence of chemically selective or neutral template sidewalls and preferentially attractive striped substrates. We identify chemo-patterning schemes that maximize defect energies, including sidewall interaction strength and chemical preference. In addition, we discuss chemo

  3. Nanomicelles based on a boronate ester-linked diblock copolymer as the carrier of doxorubicin with enhanced cellular uptake.

    PubMed

    Xu, Yan; Lu, Yuanyuan; Wang, Lei; Lu, Wei; Huang, Jin; Muir, Ben; Yu, Jiahui

    2016-05-01

    This study sought to develop a new type nanomicelle based on boronate ester-linked poly(ethylene glycol)-b-poly(benzyl glutamate) (PEG-BC-PBLG) diblock copolymer as the carrier of doxorubicin (Dox) to achieve acid-induced detachment of PEG shells and subsequent boronic acid-mediated enhanced endocytosis. In vitro studies revealed that the PEG-BC-PBLG copolymer was stable in neutral solutions but tend to hydrolysed under acidic conditions, which was attributed to the acid-sensitive properties of boronate ester bonds. The formation of PEG-BC@PBLG micelles was confirmed based on critical micelle concentration (CMC), particle size, and morphology observations. It was observed that these micelles were spherical with an average particle size of approximately 80nm, as measured by dynamic laser scattering (DLS), suggesting their passive targeting to tumour tissue and endocytosis potential. Dox-loaded PEG-BC@PBLG micelles (PEG-BC@PBLG·Dox) showed sustained drug release profiles over 9h, and their cumulative drug release was dependent on the pH value of the environment. Remarkably, cellular uptake ability of PEG-BC@PBLG micelles was found to be higher than that of non-boronate ester-linked PEG@PBLG micelles due to boronic acid-mediated endocytosis, as revealed by confocal laser scanning microscopy (CLSM) imaging of fluorescein isothiocyanate (FITC) green-conjugated micelles, thereby providing higher cytotoxicity against HepG2 cells. The antitumour activity and toxicity of PEG-BC@PBLG·Dox micelles in vivo were evaluated in BLAB/c mice against HepG2 cell-derived tumours. Compared with Dox, PEG-BC@PBLG·Dox showed reduced toxicity, whereas its tumour growth inhibition rate was 17% higher than that of free Dox. These results indicate the great potential of PEG-BC@PBLG micelles as the carrier of various lipophilic anticancer drugs with improved anti-tumour efficacy. PMID:26874117

  4. Light-mediated activation of siRNA Release in diblock copolymer assemblies for controlled gene silencing.

    PubMed

    Foster, Abbygail A; Greco, Chad T; Green, Matthew D; Epps, Thomas H; Sullivan, Millicent O

    2015-04-01

    Controllable release is particularly important for the delivery of small interfering RNA (siRNA), as siRNAs have a high susceptibility to enzymatic degradation if release is premature, yet lack silencing activity if they remain inaccessible within the cytoplasm. To overcome these hurdles, novel and tailorable mPEG-b-poly(5-(3-(amino)propoxy)-2-nitrobenzyl methacrylate) (mPEG-b-P(APNBMA)) diblock copolymers containing light-sensitive o-nitrobenzyl moieties and pendant amines are employed to provide both efficient siRNA binding, via electrostatic and hydrophobic interactions, as well as triggered charge reversal and nucleic acid release. In particular, siRNA/mPEG-b-P(APNBMA)23.6 polyplexes show minimal aggregation in physiological salt and serum, and enhanced resistance to polyanion-induced unpackaging compared to polyethylenimine preparations. Cellular delivery of siRNA/mPEG-b-P(APNBMA)23.6 polyplexes reveals greater than 80% cellular transfection, as well as rapid and widespread cytoplasmic distribution. Additionally, UV irradiation indicates ≈70% reduction in targeted gene expression following siRNA/mPEG-b-P(APNBMA)23.6 polyplex treatment, as compared to 0% reduction in polyplex-treated cells without UV irradiation, and only ≈30% reduction for Lipofectamine-treated cells. The results here highlight the potential of these light-sensitive copolymers with a well-defined on/off switch for applications including cellular patterning for guided cell growth and extension, and cellular microarrays for exploring protein and drug interactions that require enhanced spatiotemporal control of gene activation. PMID:25530259

  5. Synthesis and conformational characterization of functional di-block copolymer brushes for microarray technology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Di Carlo, Gabriele; Damin, Francesco; Armelao, Lidia; Maccato, Chiara; Unlu, Selim; Spuhler, Philipp S.; Chiari, Marcella

    2012-02-01

    Surface initiated polymerization (SIP) coupled with reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer polymerization (RAFT) was used to functionalize microarray glass slides with block polymer brushes. N,N-dimethylacrylamide (DMA) and N-acryloyloxysuccinimide (NAS) (graft-poly[DMA-b-(DMA-co-NAS)]) brushes, with di-block architecture, were prepared from a novel RAFT chain transfer agent bearing a silanating moiety (RAFT silane) directly anchored onto the glass surfaces. Conformational characterization of the coatings was performed by Self Spectral Interference Fluorescence Microscopy (SSFM), an innovative technique that describes the location of a fluorescent DNA molecule relative to a surface with sub-nanometer accuracy. X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS) and Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) were used to characterize the coatings composition and morphology.

  6. Functionalization of Cellulose Nanocrystals with PEG-Metal-Chelating Diblock Copolymers via Controlled Conjugation in Aqueous Medium

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, Melinda

    The surface of cellulose nanocrystals (CNCs) was successfully functionalized with metal chelating diblock copolymers via HyNic-4FB conjugation. Two types of PEG-metal-chelating block polymers with hydrazinonicotinate acetone hydrazine (HyNic) end groups were synthesized: mPEG-PGlu(DTPA) 18-HyNic and mPEG-PGlu(DTPA)25-HyNic. These two polymers both had a methoxy PEG (M ˜ 2000 Da) block that differed in the mean degree of polymerization of the metal-chelating block. They were characterized by 1H NMR spectroscopy and gel-permeation chromatography (GPC). 4-Formylbenzamide (4FB) groups were introduced onto the surface of CNCs and quantified through their reaction with 2-hydrazinopyridine. The polymers were grafted onto the surface of CNCs via bis-aryl hydrazone bond formation, and the kinetics of this reaction was explored by UV/Vis spectroscopy. The CNCs were also labeled with rhodamine and Alexa FluorRTM 488 dyes. Students in our collaborator's group in Pharmacy are examining applications of these materials as radiotherapeutic agents for cancer treatment.

  7. Inducing an Order-Order Morphological Transition via Chemical Degradation of Amphiphilic Diblock Copolymer Nano-Objects.

    PubMed

    Ratcliffe, Liam P D; Couchon, Claudie; Armes, Steven P; Paulusse, Jos M J

    2016-06-13

    The disulfide-based cyclic monomer, 3-methylidene-1,9-dioxa-5,12,13-trithiacyclopentadecane-2,8-dione (MTC), is statistically copolymerized with 2-hydroxypropyl methacrylate to form a range of diblock copolymer nano-objects via reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization. Poly(glycerol monomethacrylate) (PGMA) is employed as the hydrophilic stabilizer block in this aqueous polymerization-induced self-assembly (PISA) formulation, which affords pure spheres, worms or vesicles depending on the target degree of polymerization for the core-forming block. When relatively low levels (<1 mol %) of MTC are incorporated, high monomer conversions (>99%) are achieved and high blocking efficiencies are observed, as judged by (1)H NMR spectroscopy and gel permeation chromatography (GPC), respectively. However, the side reactions that are known to occur when cyclic allylic sulfides such as MTC are statistically copolymerized with methacrylic comonomers lead to relatively broad molecular weight distributions. Nevertheless, the worm-like nanoparticles obtained via PISA can be successfully transformed into spherical nanoparticles by addition of excess tris(2-carboxyethyl)phosphine (TCEP) at pH 8-9. Surprisingly, DLS and TEM studies indicate that the time scale needed for this order-order transition is significantly longer than that required for cleavage of the disulfide bonds located in the worm cores indicated by GPC analysis. This reductive degradation pathway may enable the use of these chemically degradable nanoparticles in biomedical applications, such as drug delivery systems and responsive biomaterials. PMID:27228898

  8. Arrangement of Maghemite Nanoparticles via Wet Chemical Self-Assembly in PS-b-PNIPAM Diblock Copolymer Films.

    PubMed

    Yao, Yuan; Metwalli, Ezzeldin; Su, Bo; Körstgens, Volker; Moseguí González, Daniel; Miasnikova, Anna; Laschewsky, Andre; Opel, Matthias; Santoro, Gonzalo; Roth, Stephan V; Müller-Buschbaum, Peter

    2015-06-17

    The structure and magnetic behavior of hybrid films composed of maghemite (γ-Fe2O3) nanoparticles (NPs) and an asymmetric diblock copolymer (DBC) polystyrene61-block-polyN-isopropylacrylamide115 are investigated. The NPs are coated with PS chains, which allow for a selective incorporation inside the PS domains at different NP concentrations. Upon incorporation of low amounts of NPs into the DBC thin films, the initial parallel (to film surface) cylinder morphology changes to a well ordered, perpendicularly oriented one. The characteristic domain distance of the DBC is increased due to the swelling of the PS domains with NPs. At higher NP concentrations, the excess NPs which can no longer be embedded in the PS domains, are accumulated at the film surface, and NP aggregates form. Irrespective of NP concentration, a superparamagnetic behavior of the metal oxide-DBC hybrid films is found. Such superparamagnetic properties make the established hybrid films interesting for high density magnetic storage media and thermoresponsive magnetic sensors. PMID:26001128

  9. In situ synthesis of high density sub-50 nm ZnO nanopatterned arrays using diblock copolymer templates.

    PubMed

    Suresh, Vignesh; Huang, Meiyu Stella; Srinivasan, M P; Krishnamoorthy, Sivashankar

    2013-06-26

    Fabrication of high density (~155 Gbit in(-2)) ZnO nanopatterns through in situ decomposition of Zn precursors inside diblock copolymer templates and their application as charge storage centers in nonvolatile memory devices is described. The fabrication is performed in a highly controlled fashion with the resulting ZnO nanopatterned arrays exhibiting diameters of 38 nm and heights of 14 nm offering sub-50 nm feature resolutions. The ZnO nanopatterns are naturally n-type due to the presence of zinc interstitials and oxygen vacancies that act as defect levels in trapping charge carriers. Test capacitors (metal-oxide-semiconductor, MOS) constructed using nanopatterns formed on p-Si exhibited a large flatband voltage shift of about ~2.2 V for a low operating voltage of 10 V. A high charge trap density of 3.47 × 10(18) cm(-3) combined with a good retention capacity is observed with low tunneling oxide (thermally grown) thickness of 3 nm. This demonstrates the significant promise of the ZnO nanopatterned arrays to act as charge storage centers for potential application in nonvolatile flash memory devices. The charge trapping characteristics, the capacitance-voltage measurements, and the potential of ZnO nanopatterns as charge storage centers in fabricating nonvolatile memory devices are discussed. PMID:23675650

  10. Double stimuli-responsive ultrafiltration membranes from polystyrene-block-poly(N,N-dimethylaminoethyl methacrylate) diblock copolymers.

    PubMed

    Schacher, Felix; Rudolph, Tobias; Wieberger, Florian; Ulbricht, Mathias; Müller, Axel H E

    2009-07-01

    We report on the formation of self-supporting, double stimuli-responsive ultrafiltration membranes via the non-solvent-induced phase separation (NIPS) process. The polymers, polystyrene-block-poly(N,N-dimethylaminoethyl methacrylate) (PS-b-PDMAEMA), were synthesized via living anionic polymerization in THF using sec-butyllithium as initiator. Two amphiphilic diblock copolymers were used, S(81)D(19)(75) and S(68)D(32)(100). The membranes were cast from mixtures of THF and DMF. The influence of the solvent composition, the "open-time" before immersion into the coagulation bath, and the casting film thickness onto the membrane morphology were thoroughly investigated, and flux values obtained for the different membrane systems were compared. The higher content in hydrophilic polymer for S(68)D(32)(100) resulted in a better compatibility with the nonsolvent bath consisting of water, leading to a slower precipitation and thus an improved control of the phase separation occurring. Under certain conditions, ordered microphase-separated porous morphologies were observed in parts of the membrane cross-section. Further, the "smart" properties of those novel materials are shown for two representative systems. It could be demonstrated that both stimuli for PDMAEMA, pH and temperature, can be reversibly and independently applied in order to significantly change the transmembrane water flux. PMID:20355953

  11. Synthesis of continuous mesoporous alumina films with large-sized cage-type mesopores by using diblock copolymers.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Xiangfen; Suzuki, Norihiro; Bastakoti, Bishnu Prasad; Wu, Kevin C-W; Yamauchi, Yusuke

    2012-06-01

    Mesoporous alumina films with large-sized cage-type mesopores were prepared by using commercially available diblock copolymer (PS-b-PEO) and economic inorganic salt (AlCl(3)) as aluminum source. The obtained mesopore sizes drastically expand from 35 nm to 80 nm when the amount of ethanol in the precursor solutions were controlled. More interestingly, under an optimized amount of ethanol as co-solvent, there was no significant change of micelle morphology on the substrate, even though the relative amount of PS-b-PEO to alumina source was dramatically varied. When the amount of alumina precursor was decreased, the pore walls gradually became thinner, thereby improving pore connectivity. The ordered mesoporous alumina films obtained in this study exhibit high thermal stability up to 1000 °C, and their frameworks are successfully crystallized to γ-alumina phase. This technique could also be applicable for creating other metal oxide thin films with large mesopores. PMID:22556035

  12. Inducing an Order–Order Morphological Transition via Chemical Degradation of Amphiphilic Diblock Copolymer Nano-Objects

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    The disulfide-based cyclic monomer, 3-methylidene-1,9-dioxa-5,12,13-trithiacyclopentadecane-2,8-dione (MTC), is statistically copolymerized with 2-hydroxypropyl methacrylate to form a range of diblock copolymer nano-objects via reversible addition–fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization. Poly(glycerol monomethacrylate) (PGMA) is employed as the hydrophilic stabilizer block in this aqueous polymerization-induced self-assembly (PISA) formulation, which affords pure spheres, worms or vesicles depending on the target degree of polymerization for the core-forming block. When relatively low levels (<1 mol %) of MTC are incorporated, high monomer conversions (>99%) are achieved and high blocking efficiencies are observed, as judged by 1H NMR spectroscopy and gel permeation chromatography (GPC), respectively. However, the side reactions that are known to occur when cyclic allylic sulfides such as MTC are statistically copolymerized with methacrylic comonomers lead to relatively broad molecular weight distributions. Nevertheless, the worm-like nanoparticles obtained via PISA can be successfully transformed into spherical nanoparticles by addition of excess tris(2-carboxyethyl)phosphine (TCEP) at pH 8–9. Surprisingly, DLS and TEM studies indicate that the time scale needed for this order–order transition is significantly longer than that required for cleavage of the disulfide bonds located in the worm cores indicated by GPC analysis. This reductive degradation pathway may enable the use of these chemically degradable nanoparticles in biomedical applications, such as drug delivery systems and responsive biomaterials. PMID:27228898

  13. Polystyrene-poly(ethylene oxide) diblock copolymer: the effect of polystyrene and spreading concentration at the air/water interface.

    PubMed

    Glagola, Cameron P; Miceli, Lia M; Milchak, Marissa A; Halle, Emily H; Logan, Jennifer L

    2012-03-20

    Polystyrene-block-poly(ethylene oxide) (PS-PEO) is an amphiphilic diblock copolymer that undergoes microphase separation when spread at the air/water interface, forming nanosized domains. In this study, we investigate the impact of PS by examining a series of PS-PEO samples containing constant PEO (~17,000 g·mol(-1)) and variable PS (from 3600 to 200,000 g·mol(-1)) through isothermal characterization and atomic force microscopy (AFM). The polymers separated into two categories: predominantly hydrophobic and predominantly hydrophilic with a weight percent of PEO of ~20% providing the boundary between the two. AFM results indicated that predominantly hydrophilic PS-PEO forms dots while more hydrophobic samples yield a mixture of dots and spaghetti with continent-like structures appearing at ~7% PEO or less. These structures reflect a blend of polymer spreading, entanglement, and vitrification as the solvent evaporates. Changing the spreading concentration provides insight into this process with higher concentrations representing earlier kinetic stages and lower concentrations demonstrating later ones. Comparison of isothermal results and AFM analysis shows how polymer behavior at the air/water interface correlates with the observed nanostructures. Understanding the impact of polymer composition and spreading concentration is significant in leading to greater control over the nanostructures obtained through PS-PEO self-assembly and their eventual application as polymer templates. PMID:22339480

  14. Hydrogen bonding strength of diblock copolymers affects the self-assembled structures with octa-functionalized phenol POSS nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Lu, Yi-Syuan; Yu, Chia-Yu; Lin, Yung-Chih; Kuo, Shiao-Wei

    2016-02-28

    In this study, the influence of the functional groups by the diblock copolymers of poly(styrene-b-4-vinylpyridine) (PS-b-P4VP), poly(styrene-b-2-vinylpyridine) (PS-b-P2VP), and poly(styrene-b-methyl methacrylate) (PS-b-PMMA) on their blends with octa-functionalized phenol polyhedral oligomeric silsesquioxane (OP-POSS) nanoparticles (NPs) was investigated. The relative hydrogen bonding strengths in these blends follow the order PS-b-P4VP/OP-POSS > PS-b-P2VP/OP-POSS > PS-b-PMMA/OP-POSS based on the Kwei equation from differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopic analyses. Small-angle X-ray scattering and transmission electron microscopic analyses show that the morphologies of the self-assembly structures are strongly dependent on the hydrogen bonding strength at relatively higher OP-POSS content. The PS-b-P4VP/OP-POSS hybrid complex system with the strongest hydrogen bonds shows the order-order transition from lamellae to cylinders and finally to body-centered cubic spheres upon increasing OP-POSS content. However, PS-b-P2VP/OP-POSS and PS-b-PMMA/OP-POSS hybrid complex systems, having relatively weaker hydrogen bonds, transformed from lamellae to cylinder structures at lower OP-POSS content (<50 wt%), but formed disordered structures at relatively high OP-POSS contents (>50 wt%). PMID:26781581

  15. Simulation of chain diffusion in diblock copolymer microstructures using dynamical self-consistent mean-field theory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grzetic, Douglas; Wickham, Robert

    We simulate chain diffusion in ordered phases of a diblock copolymer melt, using our recently-developed dynamical self-consistent mean-field theory [J. Chem. Phys. 140, 244907 (2014)]. This theory enables us to study large length and time scales in these dense systems, while remaining connected, in a self-consistent manner, to the microscopic physics of Brownian chains whose beads interact via a species-dependent modified Lennard-Jones potential. In the LAM and HEX phases, chain diffusion perpendicular to the microdomain interface is exponentially suppressed with increasing segregation, while parallel diffusion is unaffected. In the BCC phase, diffusion is isotropic and is gradually suppressed with increasing segregation. Chain diffusion is also isotropic in the gyroid phase, but does not vanish with increasing segregation. Instead, the diffusion constant asymptotes to a value consistent with chain diffusion being restricted to the interface of the three-dimensional gyroid network of struts, characterized by a network tortuosity value of 1 . 72 . Finally, we measure the out-of-equilibrium evolution of the anisotropy in the chain diffusion as metastable LAM transforms to stable HEX over long times.

  16. Selective area epitaxy of ultra-high density InGaN quantum dots by diblock copolymer lithography

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Highly uniform InGaN-based quantum dots (QDs) grown on a nanopatterned dielectric layer defined by self-assembled diblock copolymer were performed by metal-organic chemical vapor deposition. The cylindrical-shaped nanopatterns were created on SiNx layers deposited on a GaN template, which provided the nanopatterning for the epitaxy of ultra-high density QD with uniform size and distribution. Scanning electron microscopy and atomic force microscopy measurements were conducted to investigate the QDs morphology. The InGaN/GaN QDs with density up to 8 × 1010 cm-2 are realized, which represents ultra-high dot density for highly uniform and well-controlled, nitride-based QDs, with QD diameter of approximately 22-25 nm. The photoluminescence (PL) studies indicated the importance of NH3 annealing and GaN spacer layer growth for improving the PL intensity of the SiNx-treated GaN surface, to achieve high optical-quality QDs applicable for photonics devices. PMID:21711862

  17. Lamellar Diblock Copolymer Thin Films during Solvent Vapor Annealing Studied by GISAXS: Different Behavior of Parallel and Perpendicular Lamellae

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    The reorientation of lamellae and the dependence of the lamellar spacing, Dlam, on polymer volume fraction, ϕP, Dlam ∝ ϕP–β, in diblock copolymer thin films during solvent vapor annealing (SVA) are examined by combining white light interferometry (WLI) and grazing-incidence small-angle X-ray scattering (GISAXS). A thin film of lamellae-forming poly(styrene-b-butadiene) prepared by spin-coating features lamellae of different orientations with the lamellar spacing depending on orientation. During annealing with ethyl acetate (EAC) vapor, it is found that perpendicular lamellae behave differently from parallel ones, which is due to the fact that their initial lamellar thicknesses differ strongly. Quantitatively, the swelling process is composed of three regimes and the drying process of two regimes. The first two regimes of swelling are associated with a significant structural rearrangement of the lamellae; i.e., the lamellae first become thicker, and then perpendicular and randomly oriented lamellae vanish, which results in a purely parallel orientation at the end of the swelling process. The rearrangement is attributed to the increase of mobility of the polymer chains imparted by the solvent and to a decrease of total free energy of the thin film. In the third regime of swelling, the scaling exponent is found to be β = −0.32. During drying, the deswelling is nonaffine which may be a consequence of the increase of nonfavorable segmental interactions as the solvent is removed. PMID:25197146

  18. Self-Assembly of Diblock Copolymers in Half-Ellipsoid-Shape Confinements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, So Jung; Kim, Myong-Hyun; Lee, Dagam; Kim, Jin Kon; Kim, Jaeup

    2014-03-01

    AB block copolymers can assemble into various nanoscale morphologies such as lamella, cylinder, sphere and gyroid depending on their composition and the interaction strength. In this work, we theoretically study various block copolymer morphologies in hemispherical and ellipsoidal shape confinements and compare the results with experiments. In the experiment, PS-PMMA block copolymers are physically confined by air and surface of nanobowl which interacts preferentially or randomly depending on the coating of the nanobowl. Our theoretical modeling uses self-consistent field theory (SCFT) which calculates the mean field density distribution of AB block copolymers in this confined geometry. The key parameters for the morphology determination are the size and shape of the container and the surface tension between components. For example, when the container wall is coated with PS polymers, onion-shape lamellar phase with PS at the bottom is observed rather than the parallel lamella r phase. It is also found that preferential air-polymer surface interaction promotes the alignment of domains. Our versatile method allows us to model ellipsoid-shaped confinements, and other interesting morphologies are found depending on the eccentricity of the ellipsoid. This work was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korea government (MEST) (no. 2012R1A1A2043633).

  19. Synthesis and Characterization of a Poly(ethylene glycol)-Poly(simvastatin) Diblock Copolymer

    PubMed Central

    Asafo-Adjei, Theodora A.; Dziubla, Thomas D.; Puleo, David A.

    2014-01-01

    Biodegradable polyesters are commonly used as drug delivery vehicles, but their role is typically passive, and encapsulation approaches have limited drug payload. An alternative drug delivery method is to polymerize the active agent or its precursor into a degradable polymer. The prodrug simvastatin contains a lactone ring that lends itself to ring-opening polymerization (ROP). Consequently, simvastatin polymerization was initiated with 5 kDa monomethyl ether poly(ethylene glycol) (mPEG) and catalyzed via stannous octoate. Melt condensation reactions produced a 9.5 kDa copolymer with a polydispersity index of 1.1 at 150 °C up to a 75 kDa copolymer with an index of 6.9 at 250 °C. Kinetic analysis revealed first-order propagation rates. Infrared spectroscopy of the copolymer showed carboxylic and methyl ether stretches unique to simvastatin and mPEG, respectively. Slow degradation was demonstrated in neutral and alkaline conditions. Lastly, simvastatin, simvastatin-incorporated molecules, and mPEG were identified as the degradation products released. The present results show the potential of using ROP to polymerize lactone-containing drugs such as simvastatin. PMID:25431653

  20. Protonation-Induced Microphase Separation in Thin Films of a Polyelectrolyte-Hydrophilic Diblock Copolymer

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Block copolymers composed of poly(oligo ethylene glycol methyl ether methacrylate) and poly(2-vinylpyridine) are disordered in the neat state but can be induced to order by protonation of the P2VP block, demonstrating a tunable and responsive method for triggering assembly in thin films. Comparison of protonation with the addition of salts shows that microphase separation is due to selective protonation of the P2VP block. Increasing acid incorporation and increasing 2-vinylpyridine content for P2VP minority copolymers both promote increasingly phase-separated morphologies, consistent with protonation increasing the effective strength of segregation between the two blocks. The self-assembled nanostructures formed after casting from acidic solutions may be tuned based on the amount and type of acid incorporation as well as the annealing treatment applied after casting, where both aqueous and polar organic solvents are shown to be effective. Therefore, POEGMA-b-P2VP is a novel ion-containing block copolymer whose morphologies can be facilely tuned during casting and processing by controlling its exposure to acid. PMID:24910809

  1. Temperature effects on the interfacial properties of semifluorinated diblock copolymer thin films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shrestha, Umesh; Clarson, Stephen; Perahia, Dvora

    The interfacial composition and structure of polymer films influence their response to external stimuli and their wetting behavior. Here we probe temperature effects on the interfacial morphology and surface energies of polytrifluoro propyl methyl siloxane- b-polystyrene (SiF-b-PS) films with SiF volume fraction of φ = 0.03 to 0.46 using atomic force microscopy and surface tension measurement. Films were cast from toluene, selective for PS, and annealed at temperatures ranging from 75 to 210°C, below and above Tg of the PS block (~98°C). For φ = 0. 03 a network of small aggregates is formed and hardly changed over the temperature range studied. For φ = 0.16 an asymmetric diblock, spherical aggregates at room temperature transformed to elongated ones at elevated temperatures whereas in the symmetric case, spherical assemblies at room temperature merged into larger structures. Independent of SiF fraction the contact angle increased with temperature which is indicative of migration of fluorine to the interface. Surprisingly, dewetting was not observed even annealing the film at much higher temperature than Tg of PS. NSF DMR 0907390 2009.

  2. Self-assembly of rod-coil diblock copolymers within a rod-selective slit: a dissipative particle dynamics simulation study.

    PubMed

    Huang, Jian-Hua; Ma, Ze-Xin; Luo, Meng-Bo

    2014-06-01

    Dissipative particle dynamics simulations are performed to investigate the self-assembly of rod-coil diblock copolymers R(N(R))C(N-N(R)) within a rod-selective slit. The self-assembled structure of the confined system is sensitively dependent on the rigidity kθ and the fraction fR of the rod block and the slit height H. From the phase diagram of structures with respect to kθ and fR for N = 12 and H = 6, we observe four main structures including disordered cylinder (DC) structure, hexagonally packed cylinders (HPC) perpendicular to the slit surfaces, and lamellar structures parallel (L∥) and perpendicular (L⊥) to surfaces. And structure transitions can be achieved by tuning kθ. The effect of the slit height on the self-assembled structure is also studied for R6C6 and R7C5 copolymers with large kθ. For R6C6, different structures near surfaces and in the interior of slit are observed in relatively wide slits. Whereas for R7C5, L⊥ structure, whose lamellar domain spacing decays exponentially with H, is generally generated. Our results suggest an effective way to control the ordering of rod-coil diblock copolymers under nanoscale confinement. PMID:24801931

  3. Biodegradable poly(D,L-lactic acid)-poly(ethylene glycol)-monomethyl ether diblock copolymers: structures and surface properties relevant to their use as biomaterials.

    PubMed

    Lucke, A; Tessmar, J; Schnell, E; Schmeer, G; Göpferich, A

    2000-12-01

    To obtain biodegradable polymers with variable surface properties for tissue culture applications, poly(ethylene glycol) blocks were attached to poly(lactic acid) blocks in a variety of combinations. The resulting poly(D,L-lactic acid)-poly(ethylene glycol)-monomethyl ether (Me.PEG-PLA) diblock copolymers were subject to comprehensive investigations concerning their bulk microstructure and surface properties to evaluate their suitability for drug delivery applications as well as for the manufacture of scaffolds in tissue engineering. Results obtained from 1H-NMR, gel permeation chromatography, wide angle X-ray diffraction and modulated differential scanning calorimetry revealed that the polymer bulk microstructure contains poly(ethylene glycol)-monomethyl ether (Me.PEG) domains segregated from poly(D,L-lactic acid) (PLA) domains varying with the composition of the diblock copolymers. Analysis of the surface of polymer films with atomic force microscopy and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy indicated that there is a variable amount of Me.PEG chains present on the polymer surface, depending on the polymer composition. It could be shown that the presence of Me.PEG chains in the polymer surface had a suppressive effect on the adsorption of two model peptides (salmon calcitonin and human atrial natriuretic peptide). The possibility to modify polymer bulk microstructure as well as surface properties by variation of the copolymer composition is a prerequisite for their efficient use in the fields of drug delivery and tissue engineering. PMID:11055283

  4. Self-assembly Morphology and Crystallinity Control of Di-block Copolymer Inspired by Spider Silk

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Wenwen; Krishnaji, Sreevidhya; Kaplan, David; Cebe, Peggy

    2012-02-01

    To obtain a fuller understanding of the origin of self-assembly behavior, and thus be able to control the morphology of biomaterials with well defined amino acid sequences for tissue regeneration and drug delivery, we created a family of synthetic silk-based block copolymers inspired by the genetic sequences found in spider dragline, HABn and HBAn (n=1,2,3,6), where B = hydrophilic block, A = hydrophobic block, and H is a histidine tag. We assessed the secondary structure of water cast films by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). The crystallinity was determined by Fourier self-deconvolution of amide I spectra and confirmed by wide angle X-ray diffraction (WAXD). Results indicate that we can control the self-assembled morphology and the crystallinity by varying the block length, and a minimum of 3 A-blocks are required to form beta sheet crystalline regions in water-cast spider silk block copolymers. The morphology and crystallinity can also be tuned by annealing. Thermal properties of water cast films and films annealed at 120 C were determined by differential scanning calorimetry and thermogravimetry. The sample films were also treated with 1,1,1,3,3,3-Hexafluoro-2-propanol (HFIP) to obtain wholly amorphous samples, and crystallized by exposure to methanol. Using scanning and transmission electron microscopies, we observe that fibrillar networks and hollow micelles are formed in water cast and methanol cast samples, but not in samples cast from HFIP.

  5. Dynamic Light-Scattering Study of Self-Assembly of Diblock Copolymers in Supercritical Carbon Dioxide

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koga, Tadanori; Zhou, Shuiqin; Chu, Benjamin

    2001-08-01

    A high-pressure dynamic light-scattering (DLS) technique has been utilized to study the behavior in solution of poly(1,1-dihydroperfluorooctylacrylate) and poly(vinyl acetate) (PFOA-b-PVAC) in supercritical carbon dioxide. The hydrodynamic-radius distribution for each species, such as unimers, micelles, and large aggregates, were determined under both isobaric and isothermal conditions over a pressure range of 9 -55.2 MPa, and a temperature range of 25 -75 C, respectively. The DLS results clearly showed both pressure-induced and temperature-induced dissolution and association behavior for the copolymer in supercritical carbon dioxide. Also presented are some preliminary experimental results for the micellar self-assembly of a fluorinated block copolymer, poly(2-tetrahydropyranyl methacrylate)-b-poly(1h ,1h -perfluorooctyl methacrylate) (THPMA-b-F7MA), in supercritical carbon dioxide by use of a new high-pressure cell that allows us to conduct simultaneous small-angle x-ray scattering and DLS measurements.

  6. Diblock-copolymer-mediated self-assembly of protein-stabilized iron oxide nanoparticle clusters for magnetic resonance imaging.

    PubMed

    Tähkä, Sari; Laiho, Ari; Kostiainen, Mauri A

    2014-03-01

    Superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (SPIONs) can be used as efficient transverse relaxivity (T2 ) contrast agents in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Organizing small (D<10 nm) SPIONs into large assemblies can considerably enhance their relaxivity. However, this assembly process is difficult to control and can easily result in unwanted aggregation and precipitation, which might further lead to lower contrast agent performance. Herein, we present highly stable protein-polymer double-stabilized SPIONs for improving contrast in MRI. We used a cationic-neutral double hydrophilic poly(N-methyl-2-vinyl pyridinium iodide-block-poly(ethylene oxide) diblock copolymer (P2QVP-b-PEO) to mediate the self-assembly of protein-cage-encapsulated iron oxide (γ-Fe2 O3 ) nanoparticles (magnetoferritin) into stable PEO-coated clusters. This approach relies on electrostatic interactions between the cationic N-methyl-2-vinylpyridinium iodide block and magnetoferritin protein cage surface (pI≈4.5) to form a dense core, whereas the neutral ethylene oxide block provides a stabilizing biocompatible shell. Formation of the complexes was studied in aqueous solvent medium with dynamic light scattering (DLS) and cryogenic transmission electron microcopy (cryo-TEM). DLS results indicated that the hydrodynamic diameter (Dh ) of the clusters is approximately 200 nm, and cryo-TEM showed that the clusters have an anisotropic stringlike morphology. MRI studies showed that in the clusters the longitudinal relaxivity (r1 ) is decreased and the transverse relaxivity (r2 ) is increased relative to free magnetoferritin (MF), thus indicating that clusters can provide considerable contrast enhancement. PMID:24523066

  7. Directed self-assembly of diblock copolymers in cylindrical confinement: effect of underfilling and air-polymer interactions on configurations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carpenter, Corinne L.; Delaney, Kris T.; Laachi, Nabil; Fredrickson, Glenn H.

    2015-03-01

    Directed self-assembly (DSA) of block copolymers has attracted attention for its use as a simple, cost- effective patterning tool for creating vertical interconnect access (VIA) channels in nanoelectronic devices.1, 2 This technique supplements existing lithographic technologies to allow for the creation of high-resolution cylindrical holes whose diameter and placement can be precisely controlled. In this study, we use self-consistent field theory (SCFT) simulations to investigate the equilibrium configurations of under-filled DSA systems with air-polymer interactions. We report on a series of SCFT simulations of our three species (PMMA-b-PS diblock and air) model in cylindrical confinement to explore the role of template diameter, under-fill fraction (i.e. volume fraction of air), air-polymer surface interaction and polymer-side wall/substrate interactions on equilibrium morphologies in an under-filled template with a free top surface. We identify parameters and system configurations where a meniscus appears and explore cases with PMMA-attractive, PS-attractive, and all-neutral walls to understand the effects of wall properties on meniscus geometry and DSA morphology. An important outcome is an understanding of the parameters that control the contact angle of the meniscus with the wall, as it is one of the simplest quantitative measures of the meniscus shape. Ultimately, we seek to identify DSA formulations, templates, and surface treatments with predictable central cylinder diameter and a shallow contact angle, as these factors would facilitate broad process windows and ease of manufacturing.

  8. On the comparisons between dissipative particle dynamics simulations and self-consistent field calculations of diblock copolymer microphase separation.

    PubMed

    Sandhu, Paramvir; Zong, Jing; Yang, Delian; Wang, Qiang

    2013-05-21

    To highlight the importance of quantitative and parameter-fitting-free comparisons among different models/methods, we revisited the comparisons made by Groot and Madden [J. Chem. Phys. 108, 8713 (1998)] and Chen et al. [J. Chem. Phys. 122, 104907 (2005)] between their dissipative particle dynamics (DPD) simulations of the DPD model and the self-consistent field (SCF) calculations of the "standard" model done by Matsen and Bates [Macromolecules 29, 1091 (1996)] for diblock copolymer (DBC) A-B melts. The small values of the invariant degree of polymerization used in the DPD simulations do not justify the use of the fluctuation theory of Fredrickson and Helfand [J. Chem. Phys. 87, 697 (1987)] by Groot and Madden, and their fitting between the DPD interaction parameters and the Flory-Huggins χ parameter in the "standard" model also has no rigorous basis. Even with their use of the fluctuation theory and the parameter-fitting, we do not find the "quantitative match" for the order-disorder transition of symmetric DBC claimed by Groot and Madden. For lamellar and cylindrical structures, we find that the system fluctuations/correlations decrease the bulk period and greatly suppress the large depletion of the total segmental density at the A-B interfaces as well as its oscillations in A- and B-domains predicted by our SCF calculations of the DPD model. At all values of the A-block volume fractions in the copolymer f (which are integer multiples of 0.1), our SCF calculations give the same sequence of phase transitions with varying χN as the "standard" model, where N denotes the number of segments on each DBC chain. All phase boundaries, however, are shifted to higher χN due to the finite interaction range in the DPD model, except at f = 0.1 (and 0.9), where χN at the transition between the disordered phase and the spheres arranged on a body-centered cubic lattice is lower due to N = 10 in the DPD model. Finally, in 11 of the total 20 cases (f-χN combinations) studied in

  9. On the comparisons between dissipative particle dynamics simulations and self-consistent field calculations of diblock copolymer microphase separation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sandhu, Paramvir; Zong, Jing; Yang, Delian; Wang, Qiang

    2013-05-01

    To highlight the importance of quantitative and parameter-fitting-free comparisons among different models/methods, we revisited the comparisons made by Groot and Madden [J. Chem. Phys. 108, 8713 (1998), 10.1063/1.476300] and Chen et al. [J. Chem. Phys. 122, 104907 (2005), 10.1063/1.1860351] between their dissipative particle dynamics (DPD) simulations of the DPD model and the self-consistent field (SCF) calculations of the "standard" model done by Matsen and Bates [Macromolecules 29, 1091 (1996), 10.1021/ma951138i] for diblock copolymer (DBC) A-B melts. The small values of the invariant degree of polymerization used in the DPD simulations do not justify the use of the fluctuation theory of Fredrickson and Helfand [J. Chem. Phys. 87, 697 (1987), 10.1063/1.453566] by Groot and Madden, and their fitting between the DPD interaction parameters and the Flory-Huggins χ parameter in the "standard" model also has no rigorous basis. Even with their use of the fluctuation theory and the parameter-fitting, we do not find the "quantitative match" for the order-disorder transition of symmetric DBC claimed by Groot and Madden. For lamellar and cylindrical structures, we find that the system fluctuations/correlations decrease the bulk period and greatly suppress the large depletion of the total segmental density at the A-B interfaces as well as its oscillations in A- and B-domains predicted by our SCF calculations of the DPD model. At all values of the A-block volume fractions in the copolymer f (which are integer multiples of 0.1), our SCF calculations give the same sequence of phase transitions with varying χN as the "standard" model, where N denotes the number of segments on each DBC chain. All phase boundaries, however, are shifted to higher χN due to the finite interaction range in the DPD model, except at f = 0.1 (and 0.9), where χN at the transition between the disordered phase and the spheres arranged on a body-centered cubic lattice is lower due to N = 10 in the DPD

  10. Prediction of solvent-induced morphological changes of polyelectrolyte diblock copolymer micelles.

    PubMed

    Li, Nan K; Fuss, William H; Tang, Lei; Gu, Renpeng; Chilkoti, Ashutosh; Zauscher, Stefan; Yingling, Yaroslava G

    2015-11-14

    Self-assembly processes of polyelectrolyte block copolymers are ubiquitous in industrial and biological processes; understanding their physical properties can also provide insights into the design of polyelectrolyte materials with novel and tailored properties. Here, we report systematic analysis on how the ionic strength of the solvent and the length of the polyelectrolyte block affect the self-assembly and morphology of the polyelectrolyte block copolymer materials by constructing a salt-dependent morphological phase diagram using an implicit solvent ionic strength (ISIS) method for dissipative particle dynamics (DPD) simulations. This diagram permits the determination of the conditions for the morphological transition into a specific shape, namely vesicles or lamellar aggregates, wormlike/cylindrical micelles, and spherical micelles. The scaling behavior for the size of spherical micelles is predicted, in terms of radius of gyration (R(g,m)) and thickness of corona (Hcorona), as a function of solvent ionic strength (c(s)) and polyelectrolyte length (NA), which are R(g,m) ∼ c(s)(-0.06)N(A)(0.54) and Hcorona ∼ c(s)(-0.11)N(A)(0.75). The simulation results were corroborated through AFM and static light scattering measurements on the example of the self-assembly of monodisperse, single-stranded DNA block-copolynucleotides (polyT50-b-F-dUTP). Overall, we were able to predict the salt-responsive morphology of polyelectrolyte materials in aqueous solution and show that a spherical-cylindrical-lamellar change in morphology can be obtained through an increase in solvent ionic strength or a decrease of polyelectrolyte length. PMID:26315065

  11. Morphological Phase Behavior of Poly(RTIL)-Containing Diblock Copolymer Melts

    SciTech Connect

    Scalfani, Vincent F.; Wiesenauer, Erin F.; Ekblad, John R.; Edwards, Julian P.; Gin, Douglas L.; Bailey, Travis S.

    2012-10-23

    The development of nanostructured polymeric systems containing directionally continuous poly(ionic liquid) (poly(IL)) domains has considerable implications toward a range of transport-dependent, energy-based technology applications. The controlled, synthetic integration of poly(IL)s into block copolymer (BCP) architectures provides a promising means to this end, based on their inherent ability to self-assemble into a range of defined, periodic morphologies. In this work, we report the melt-state phase behavior of an imidazolium-containing alkyl-ionic BCP system, derived from the sequential ring-opening metathesis polymerization (ROMP) of imidazolium- and alkyl-substituted norbornene monomer derivatives. A series of 16 BCP samples were synthesized, varying both the relative volume fraction of the poly(norbornene dodecyl ester) block (f{sub DOD} = 0.42-0.96) and the overall molecular weights of the block copolymers (M{sub n} values from 5000-20,100 g mol{sup -1}). Through a combination of small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) and dynamic rheology, we were able to delineate clear compositional phase boundaries for each of the classic BCP phases, including lamellae (Lam), hexagonally packed cylinders (Hex), and spheres on a body-centered-cubic lattice (S{sub BCC}). Additionally, a liquid-like packing (LLP) of spheres was found for samples located in the extreme asymmetric region of the phase diagram, and a persistent coexistence of Lam and Hex domains was found in lieu of the bicontinuous cubic gyroid phase for samples located at the intersection of Hex and Lam regions. Thermal disordering was opposed even in very low molecular weight samples, detected only when the composition was highly asymmetric (f{sub DOD} = 0.96). Annealing experiments on samples exhibiting Lam and Hex coexistence revealed the presence of extremely slow transition kinetics, ultimately selective for one or the other but not the more complex gyroid phase. In fact, no evidence of the bicontinuous

  12. Direct Comparisons among Fast Off-Lattice Monte Carlo Simulations, Integral Equation Theories, and Gaussian Fluctuation Theory for Disordered Symmetric Diblock Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Delian; Zong, Jing; Wang, Qiang

    2012-02-01

    Based on the same model system of symmetric diblock copolymers as discrete Gaussian chains with soft, finite-range repulsions as commonly used in dissipative-particle dynamics simulations, we directly compare, without any parameter-fitting, the thermodynamic and structural properties of the disordered phase obtained from fast off-lattice Monte Carlo (FOMC) simulations^1, reference interaction site model (RISM) and polymer reference interaction site model (PRISM) theories, and Gaussian fluctuation theory. The disordered phase ranges from homopolymer melts (i.e., where the Flory-Huggins parameter χ=0) all the way to the order-disorder transition point determined in FOMC simulations, and the compared quantities include the internal energy, entropy, Helmholtz free energy, excess pressure, constant-volume heat capacity, chain/block dimensions, and various structure factors and correlation functions in the system. Our comparisons unambiguously and quantitatively reveal the consequences of various theoretical approximations and the validity of these theories in describing the fluctuations/correlations in disordered diblock copolymers. [1] Q. Wang and Y. Yin, J. Chem. Phys., 130, 104903 (2009).

  13. Mechanical properties of a waterborne pressure-sensitive adhesive with a percolating poly(acrylic acid)-based diblock copolymer network: effect of pH.

    PubMed

    Gurney, Robert S; Morse, Andrew; Siband, Elodie; Dupin, Damien; Armes, Steven P; Keddie, Joseph L

    2015-06-15

    Copolymerizing an acrylic acid comonomer is often beneficial for the adhesive properties of waterborne pressure-sensitive adhesives (PSAs). Here, we demonstrate a new strategy in which poly(acrylic acid) (PAA) is distributed as a percolating network within a PSA film formed from a polymer colloid. A diblock copolymer composed of PAA and poly(n-butyl acrylate) (PBA) blocks was synthesized using reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization and adsorbed onto soft acrylic latex particles prior to their film formation. The thin adsorbed shells on the particles create a percolating network that raises the elastic modulus, creep resistance and tensile strength of the final film. When the film formation occurs at pH 10, ionomeric crosslinking occurs, and high tack adhesion is obtained in combination with high creep resistance. The results show that the addition of an amphiphilic PAA-b-PBA diblock copolymer (2.0 wt.%) to a soft latex provides a simple yet effective means of adjusting the mechanical and adhesive properties of the resulting composite film. PMID:25706199

  14. Langmuir structure of poly (2-vinylpyridine-b-hexyl isocyanate) rod-coil diblock copolymers at the air/water Interface

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ahmad, Farhan

    2005-03-01

    We conducted a systematic interfacial study for the complete range (5%-90% of rod mole percentage) of an amphiphilic rod-coil system, poly (hexyl isocyanate)-b-(2-vinylpyridine) at the air/water and air/solid interface. We applied Langmuir balance technique, scanning probe microscopy (SPM), transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and X-ray reflectivity for the complete characterization of the monolayer at the interfaces. The phase isotherms showed the well amphiphilic balance for the diblock copolymers, and the formation of stable monolayers. With the increasing rod content, the consistent increase in the monolayer packing density was observed by the phase isotherms and supported by X-ray reflectivity. SPM and TEM characterization showed their interesting surface morphology according to the varying rod mole percentage in the rod-coil system. Rod mole percentage 5%-15% showed micellar morphology. Rod mole percentage 23%-32% showed distinct and dispersed rods, whereas rod mole percentage 70%-90% showed well packed structure similar to lamella phase. We found the tendency of the diblock system to adopt a packed monomolecular structure has increased by the increasing rod content. This lead us to conclude that it is the hexyl-isocyanate (rod part) that governs mostly the interfacial behavior of rod-coil block copolymers.

  15. Defect structure and selective swelling of a lamellar diblock copolymer film

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fan, Yin; Alexander-Katz, Alfredo; Thomas, Edwin

    2012-02-01

    Previous work in our group introduced a responsive photonic gel made by swelling a lamellar poly(styrene-b-2-vinylpyridine) (PS-P2VP) film in selective solvents. The photonic gels can be used as colorimetric sensors for temperature, pH or solvent composition and the responses are highly tunable. The film's swollen structure can be measured in situ by real-time spectrometry. The study reported in this abstract focuses on the defect structures and swelling kinetics of the block copolymer (BCP) films. Using polymers of the same molecular weight, we made films of the same lamellar periodicity and observed variations in color change during swelling. Cross-sectional transmission electron microscopy (TEM) images showed edge or screw dislocation-type defects. We built a structural model for the defects in the lamellar BCP films and found the defect geometry and density responsible for the swelling behavior. The result suggested that the film's photonic property could be tuned by defect control.

  16. Carbon nanotubes with small and tunable diameters from poly(ferrocenylsilane)-block-polysiloxane diblock copolymers.

    PubMed

    Lu, Jennifer Q; Rider, David A; Onyegam, Emanuel; Wang, Hai; Winnik, Mitchell A; Manners, Ian; Cheng, Qian; Fu, Qiang; Liu, Jie

    2006-05-23

    Iron-containing nanostructures produced from various self-assembled poly(ferrocenylsilane)-block-polysiloxane thin films are catalytically active for the initiation and growth of high density, small diameter carbon nanotubes (CNTs). Moreover, the tube diameter and density can be tuned by adjusting the chain lengths of the block copolymer. Iron-containing nanostructures from poly(ferrocenylmethylethylsilane)-b-poly(methylvinylsiloxane) polymer with 25 repeat units of an iron-containing segment and 265 repeat units of a non-iron-containing segment are able to produce CNTs with diameters around or less than 1 nm. Lithographically selective growth of CNTs across a large surface area has been demonstrated using this polymer system. Under the same growth condition, it has been found that the yield of defect-free CNTs varies with the size of the catalytically active nanostructures, which are dictated by the chain lengths of the two blocks. This result indicates that, for a specific-sized catalyst nanocluster, a unique set of growth conditions is required for synthesizing high yield, defect-free CNTs. This finding further addresses the importance of using uniform-sized catalyst-containing nanostructures for consistently achieving high-yield and high-quality CNTs with a minimum number of defects and amount of amorphous carbon. PMID:16700610

  17. Controlled assembly of plasmonic nanoparticles using neutral-charged diblock copolymers.

    PubMed

    Yin, Quanyi; Han, Xia; Ponsinet, Virginie; Liu, Honglai

    2014-10-01

    In this study, our aim was to control the assembly of plasmonic nanoparticles by using the electrostatic assembly of oppositely charged colloidal species. Gold nanoparticles (Au NPs) were modified with a carboxyl-terminated polymeric ligand, O-(2-carboxyethyl)-O'-(2-mercaptoethyl) heptaethylene glycol (SH-PEG7-COOH), so that they are negatively charged on the pH range 5-10 and they stand elevated ionic strength (up to 1M NaCl) without loss of colloidal stability. Block copolymers poly[(ethylene glycol) methyl ether-block-(N,N-dimethylamino-2-ethyl methacrylate)] (mPEG-PDMAEMA), with a neutral mPEG block and a pH-sensitive positively charged PDMAEMA block were synthesized by atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP). The formation of complexes, driven by the electrostatic attraction between opposite charges and by the release of the condensed counter ions, was investigated using dynamic light scattering and spectrophotometry. The relative quantities of polymer chains and nanoparticles in the suspension were shown to affect the size of the formed complexes. In this report, it is also shown that the complex formation is reversible. Stable complexes of typical size 400 nm were formed, which could be used as building blocks for new optical materials. PMID:24992300

  18. Characterization of Diblock Copolymer Order-Order Transitions in Semidilute Aqueous Solution Using Fluorescence Correlation Spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Clarkson, Christopher G; Lovett, Joseph R; Madsen, Jeppe; Armes, Steven P; Geoghegan, Mark

    2015-09-01

    The temperature and pH-dependent diffusion of poly(glycerol monomethacrylate)-block-poly(2-hydroxypropyl methacrylate) nanoparticles prepared via polymerization-induced self-assembly in water is characterized using fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (FCS). Lowering the solution temperature or raising the solution pH induces a worm-to-sphere transition and hence an increase in diffusion coefficient by a factor of between four and eight. FCS enables morphological transitions to be monitored at relatively high copolymer concentrations (10% w/w) compared to those required for dynamic light scattering (0.1% w/w). This is important because such transitions are reversible at the former concentration, whereas they are irreversible at the latter. Furthermore, the FCS data suggest that the thermal transition takes place over a very narrow temperature range (less than 2 °C). These results demonstrate the application of FCS to characterize order-order transitions, as opposed to order-disorder transitions. PMID:26096738

  19. Chiral selection of single helix formed by diblock copolymers confined in nanopores.

    PubMed

    Deng, Hanlin; Qiang, Yicheng; Zhang, Tingting; Li, Weihua; Yang, Tao

    2016-09-21

    Chiral selection has attracted tremendous attention from the scientific communities, especially from biologists, due to the mysterious origin of homochirality in life. The self-assembly of achiral block copolymers confined in nanopores offers a simple but useful model of forming helical structures, where the helical structures possess random chirality selection, i.e. equal probability of left-handedness and right-handedness. Based on this model, we study the stimulus-response of chiral selection to external conditions by introducing a designed chiral pattern onto the inner surface of a nanopore, aiming to obtain a defect-free helix with controllable homochirality. A cell dynamics simulation based on the time-dependent Ginzburg-Landau theory is carried out to demonstrate the tuning effect of the patterned surface on the chiral selection. Our results illustrate that the chirality of the helix can be successfully controlled to be consistent with that of the tailored surface patterns. This work provides a successful example for the stimulus response of the chiral selection of self-assembled morphologies from achiral macromolecules to external conditions, and hence sheds light on the understanding of the mechanism of the stimulus response. PMID:27536966

  20. Size selective incorporation of gold nanoparticles in diblock copolymer vesicle wall.

    PubMed

    Xu, Jiangping; Han, Yuanyuan; Cui, Jie; Jiang, Wei

    2013-08-20

    A systematic study is conducted to reveal how far the polymeric vesicle wall can embed gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) with different sizes by combining experiments and self-consistent field simulations. Both the experimental and simulative results indicate that the location of AuNPs in vesicle wall or in spherical micelle is heavily size dependent. Whether the AuNPs enter the vesicle wall or not is determined by a ratio of the diameter of AuNPs (D0) to the thickness of the vesicle wall (d(w0)). The 1-dodecanethiol-coated AuNPs (Au(x)R) with D0/d(w0) < 0.3 will stably disperse in the vesicle walls. For polystyrene-coated AuNPs (Au(x)S), a criterion of D0/d(w0) is proposed based on the phase diagram; i.e., the Au(x)S with D0/d(w0) < 0.5 can be located in the vesicle wall. Otherwise, the Au(x)R and the Au(x)S prefer to locate in spherical micelles. Moreover, the contributions of enthalpy and entropy to the total free energy of the system are respectively calculated to reveal the mechanism of the size selective distribution of AuNPs. The results demonstrate that the escape of AuNPs from vesicle walls and their selective distribution in spherical micelles is an entropy-driven process. Our study provides an important guideline for fabricating nanoparticle/block copolymer hybrid vesicles in dilute solution. PMID:23875535

  1. Construction of a Reactive Diblock Copolymer, Polyphosphoester-block-Poly(L-lactide), as a Versatile Framework for Functional Materials that are Capable of Full Degradation and Nanoscopic Assembly Formation

    PubMed Central

    Lim, Young H.; Heo, Gyu Seong; Cho, Sangho; Wooley, Karen L.

    2013-01-01

    The development of a diblock copolymer, polyphosphoester-block-poly(L-lactide), which has potential for being fully-degradable and biocompatible, was achieved by one-pot sequential ring-opening polymerizations (ROPs) of two cyclic monomers: alkyne-functionalized phospholane and L-lactide (LLA). A kinetic study of the polymerization in each step was investigated in a detailed manner by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy and gel permeation chromatography (GPC), revealing living/controlled characteristics with narrow molecular weight distributions and a linear increase of molecular weights vs. monomer conversion and time. Subsequently, photo-induced thiol-yne “click” reactions with small molecule thiols bearing either carboxylic acid or amino groups afforded amphiphilic diblock copolymers with carboxylate or amino side-chain functionalities along the polyphosphoester segment of the diblock copolymer backbone. Finally, direct dissolution of the two different types of amphiphilic diblock copolymers in aqueous solutions yielded well-defined spherical micelles with corresponding negative or positive surface charges, respectively, as confirmed by transmission electron microscopy (TEM), dynamic light scattering (DLS) and zeta potential analyses. PMID:24167757

  2. A new formulation of curcumin using poly (lactic-co-glycolic acid)—polyethylene glycol diblock copolymer as carrier material

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Phuong Tuyen Dao, Thi; Hoai Nguyen, To; To, Van Vinh; Ho, Thanh Ha; Nguyen, Tuan Anh; Chien Dang, Mau

    2014-09-01

    The aim of this study is to fabricate a nanoparticle formulation of curcumin using a relatively new vehicle as the matrix polymer: poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA)- polyethylene glycol (PEG) diblock copolymer, and to investigate the effects of the various processing parameters on the characteristics of nanoparticles (NPs). We successfully synthesized the matrix polymer of PLGA-PEG by conjugation of PLGA copolymer with a carboxylate end group to a heterobifunctional amine-PEG-methoxy using N-(3-dimethylaminopropyl)-N’-ethylcarbodiimide hydrochloride and N-hydroxysuccinimide as conjugation crosslinkers. The composition of the formed product (PLGA-PEG) was characterized with 500 MHz 1H nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR). The conjugation of PLGA-PEG was confirmed using Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectrum study. This diblock copolymer was then used to prepare the curcumin-loaded NPs through nanoprecipitation technique. With this method, we found that the size distribution depends on the type of solvent, the concentration of polymer and the concentration of surfactant. The particle size and size distribution were measured by dynamic light scattering (DLS). Transmission electron microscope (TEM) and scanning electron microscope (SEM) were used to confirm the size, structure and morphology of the successfully prepared NPs. All of our results showed that they are spherical and quite homologous with mean diameter around of 100-300 nm. Further, we evaluated encapsulation efficiency and some characteristics of NPs through high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) analyses, zeta-potential measurements and x-ray diffraction studies. The HPLC analyses were performed to determine the amount of curcumin entrapped in NPs. The zeta-potential measurements confirmed the stability of NPs and the successful encapsulation of curcumin within NPs and the x-ray diffraction patterns showed the disordered-crystalline phase of curcumin inside the polymeric matrix.

  3. Structural evolution of perpendicular lamellae in diblock copolymer thin films during solvent vapor treatment investigated by grazing-incidence small-angle X-ray scattering.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jianqi; Posselt, Dorthe; Sepe, Alessandro; Shen, Xuhu; Perlich, Jan; Smilgies, Detlef-M; Papadakis, Christine M

    2013-08-01

    The structural evolution in poly(styrene-b-butadiene) (P(S-b-B)) diblock copolymer thin films during solvent vapor treatment is investigated in situ using time-resolved grazing-incidence small-angle X-ray scattering (GISAXS). Using incident angles above and below the polymer critical angle, structural changes near the film surface and in the entire film are distinguished. The swelling of the film is one-dimensional along the normal of the substrate. During swelling, the initially perpendicular lamellae tilt within the film to be able to shrink. In contrast, at the film surface, the lamellae stay perpendicular, and eventually vanish at the expense of a thin PB wetting layer. During the subsequent drying, the perpendicular lamellae reappear at the surface, and finally, PS blocks protrude. By modeling, the time-dependent height of the protrusions can be quantitatively extracted. PMID:23843127

  4. Understanding Fluctuation/Correlation Effects on the Order-Disorder Transition of Symmetric Diblock Copolymers with a Density-Functional Theory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zong, Jing; Wang, Qiang

    2013-03-01

    How fluctuations change the order-disorder transition (ODT) of symmetric diblock copolymers (DBC) is a classic yet unsolved problem in polymer physics.[1] Taking a model system of discrete Gaussian chains interacting with soft, finite-range repulsions as commonly used in dissipative-particle dynamics simulations we formulate a density-functional theory (DFT) based on the polymer integral equation theories,[2] which includes the system fluctuations and correlations neglected by the mean-field theory (i.e., the widely applied self-consistent field theory) and can be reduced to the latter under the mean-spherical approximation. We then unambiguously reveal the fluctuation/correlation effects on the ODT of symmetric DBC by direct comparisons among the mean-field theory, DFT, and fast off-lattice Monte Carlo simulations,[3] all using exactly the same model system (Hamiltonian) and thus without any parameter-fitting.

  5. Formation and Reversible Morphological Transition of Bicontinuous Nanospheres and Toroidal Micelles by the Self-Assembly of a Crystalline-b-Coil Diblock Copolymer.

    PubMed

    Presa-Soto, David; Carriedo, Gabino A; de la Campa, Raquel; Presa Soto, Alejandro

    2016-08-16

    We herein report the formation of two complex nanostructures, toroidal micelles and bicontinuous nanospheres, by the self-assembly of the single structurally simple crystalline-b-coil diblock copolymer poly[bis(trifluoroethoxy)phosphazene]-b-poly(styrene), PTFEP-b-PS, in one solvent (THF) and without additives. The nature of these nanostructures in solution was confirmed by DLS and cryo-TEM experiments. The two morphologies are related by means of a new type of reversible morphological evolution, bicontinuous-to-toroidal, triggered by changes in the polymer concentration. WAXS experiments showed that the degree of crystallinity of the PTFEP chains located at the core of the toroids was higher than that in the bicontinuous nanospheres, thus indicating that the final morphology of the aggregates is mostly determined by the ordering of the PTFEP core-forming blocks. PMID:27455871

  6. Poly(ethylene oxide)-b-poly(L-lactide) diblock copolymer/carbon nanotube-based nanocomposites: LiCl as supramolecular structure-directing agent.

    PubMed

    Meyer, Franck; Raquez, Jean-Marie; Verge, Pierre; Martínez de Arenaza, Inger; Coto, Borja; Van Der Voort, Pascal; Meaurio, Emilio; Dervaux, Bart; Sarasua, Jose-Ramon; Du Prez, Filip; Dubois, Philippe

    2011-11-14

    This work relies on the CNT dispersion in either solution or a polymer matrix through the formation of a three-component supramolecular system composed of PEO-b-PLLA diblock copolymer, carbon nanotubes (CNTs), and lithium chloride. According to a one-pot procedure in solution, the "self-assembly" concept has demonstrated its efficiency using suspension tests of CNTs. Characterizations of the supramolecular system by photon correlation spectroscopy, Raman spectroscopy, and molecular dynamics simulations highlight the charge transfer interaction from the CNTs toward the PEO-b-PLLA/LiCl complex. Finally, this concept was successfully extended in bulk (absence of solvent) via melt-processing techniques by dispersing these complexes in a commercial polylactide (PLA) matrix. Electrical conductivity measurements and transmission electron microscopy attested for the remarkable dispersion of CNTs, confirming the design of high-performance PLA-based materials. PMID:21936499

  7. Self-assembly of diblock co-polymers at air-water interface: A microscopy and x-ray scattering study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giri, R. P.; Mukhopadhyay, M. K.

    2016-05-01

    The spontaneous surface aggregation of diblock copolymer, containing polystyrene-polydimethylsiloxane or PS-PDMS, have been studied at air-water interface using Brewster's angle microscopy (BAM) and grazing incidence small angle x-ray scattering (GISAXS) technique. Pronounced differences in the molecular weight and solvent dependence of the size of aggregation on the water surface are observed. Structural characterization is done using atomic force microscopy (AFM) for a monolayer transferred to Si substrate. It shows that, individual polymer chains coalesce to form some disc like micelle aggregation on the Si surface which is also evident from the BAM image of the water floated monolayer. GISAXS study is also corroborating the same result.

  8. Dual-responsive polypseudorotaxanes based on block-selected inclusion between polyethylene-block-poly(ethylene glycol) diblock copolymers and 1,4-diethoxypillar[5]arene.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jianzhuang; Li, Nan; Gao, Yongping; Sun, Fugen; He, Jianping; Li, Yongsheng

    2015-10-21

    Based on the selective recognition of the polyethylene (PE) block of polyethylene-block-poly(ethylene glycol) (PE-b-PEG) by 1,4-diethoxypillar[5]arene (DEP5A), two novel thermo and competitive guest (1,4-dibromobutane or hexanedinitrile) responsive polypseudorotaxanes (PPRs) have been successfully constructed. The formation of PPRs both in solution and in the solid state was demonstrated by (1)H NMR, 2D NOESY, and WAXD analyses. TGA data illustrate that PPRs exhibit higher thermal stability than their precursor diblock copolymers. Moreover, intriguing porous disk-like aggregates are produced by electrospraying of PPRs in CHCl3 and the self-assembled structures of PPRs are totally changed by the addition of 1,4-dibromobutane or hexanedinitrile, demonstrating their competitive guest stimuli-responsiveness. PMID:26324953

  9. Reduction of the Inflammatory Responses against Alginate-Poly-L-Lysine Microcapsules by Anti-Biofouling Surfaces of PEG-b-PLL Diblock Copolymers

    PubMed Central

    Spasojevic, Milica; Paredes-Juarez, Genaro A.; Vorenkamp, Joop; de Haan, Bart J.; Schouten, Arend Jan; de Vos, Paul

    2014-01-01

    Large-scale application of alginate-poly-L-lysine (alginate-PLL) capsules used for microencapsulation of living cells is hampered by varying degrees of success, caused by tissue responses against the capsules in the host. A major cause is proinflammatory PLL which is applied at the surface to provide semipermeable properties and immunoprotection. In this study, we investigated whether application of poly(ethylene glycol)-block-poly(L-lysine hydrochloride) diblock copolymers (PEG-b-PLL) can reduce the responses against PLL on alginate-matrices. The application of PEG-b-PLL was studied in two manners: (i) as a substitute for PLL or (ii) as an anti-biofouling layer on top of a proinflammatory, but immunoprotective, semipermeable alginate-PLL100 membrane. Transmission FTIR was applied to monitor the binding of PEG-b-PLL. When applied as a substitute for PLL, strong host responses in mice were observed. These responses were caused by insufficient binding of the PLL block of the diblock copolymers confirmed by FTIR. When PEG-b-PLL was applied as an anti-biofouling layer on top of PLL100 the responses in mice were severely reduced. Building an effective anti-biofouling layer required 50 hours as confirmed by FTIR, immunocytochemistry and XPS. Our study provides new insight in the binding requirements of polyamino acids necessary to provide an immunoprotective membrane. Furthermore, we present a relatively simple method to mask proinflammatory components on the surface of microcapsules to reduce host responses. Finally, but most importantly, our study illustrates the importance of combining physicochemical and biological methods to understand the complex interactions at the capsules' surface that determine the success or failure of microcapsules applicable for cell-encapsulation. PMID:25347191

  10. High-Pressure Micellar Solutions of Symmetric and Asymmetric Styrene?Diene Diblocks in Compressible Near Critical Solvents: Micellization Pressures and Cloud Pressures Respond but Micellar Cloud Pressures Insensitive to Copolymer Molecular Weight, Concentration, and Block Ratio Changes

    SciTech Connect

    Winoto, Winoto; Tan, Sugata; Shen, Youqin; Radosz, Maciej; Hong, Kunlun; Mays, Jimmy

    2009-01-01

    Micellar solutions of polystyrene-block-polybutadiene and polystyrene-block-polyisoprene in propane are found to exhibit significantly lower cloud pressures than the corresponding hypothetical nonmicellar solutions. Such a cloud-pressure reduction indicates the extent to which micelle formation enhances the apparent diblock solubility in near-critical and hence compressible propane. Concentration-dependent pressure-temperature points beyond which no micelles can be formed, referred to as the micellization end points, are found to depend on the block type, size, and ratio. The cloud-pressure reduction and the micellization end point measured for styrene-diene diblocks in propane should be characteristic of all amphiphilic diblock copolymer solutions that form micelles in compressible solvents.

  11. Reversible sol-gel transitions of aqueous dispersions of silica nanoparticles grafted with diblock copolymer brushes composed of a thermosensitive inner block and a charged outer block.

    PubMed

    Wright, Roger A E; Hu, Bin; Henn, Daniel M; Zhao, Bin

    2015-09-14

    We report in this article that aqueous dispersions of thermosensitive diblock copolymer brush-grafted 17 nm silica nanoparticles (hairy NPs) can undergo in situ, reversible sol-gel transitions in response to temperature changes. The brushes consisted of a thermosensitive poly(methoxydi(ethylene glycol) methacrylate) (PDEGMMA) inner block and a charge-carrying, poly(DEGMMA-co-2-(methacryloyloxy)ethyltrimethylammonium iodide) outer block, which were prepared by a one-pot, surface-initiated atom transfer radical polymerization and subsequent quaternization of tertiary amine moieties in the second block with iodomethane. Above a critical concentration, the aqueous dispersion of hairy NPs with an appropriate block copolymer composition exhibited a reversible transition from a free flowing liquid to a free standing hydrogel upon cooling from elevated temperatures, which was driven by the lower critical solution temperature transition of the thermosensitive inner block of hairy NPs as confirmed by dynamic light scattering study. At the same concentration of hairy NPs, the sol-gel transition temperature was higher when the highly hydrated, charged outer block was longer. The transition temperature decreased with decreasing the concentration of hairy NPs in the dispersion; reversible gelation was achieved with a concentration of hairy NPs in water as low as 5.5 wt%. Interestingly, the LCST transition of the inner thermosensitive PDEGMMA block disappeared and no sol-gel transition was observed in the studied temperature range when the charged outer block was sufficiently long. PMID:26223449

  12. Formation of Polyion Complex (PIC) Micelles and Vesicles with Anionic pH-Responsive Unimer Micelles and Cationic Diblock Copolymers in Water.

    PubMed

    Ohno, Sayaka; Ishihara, Kazuhiko; Yusa, Shin-Ichi

    2016-04-26

    A random copolymer (p(A/MaU)) of sodium 2-(acrylamido)-2-methylpropanesulfonate (AMPS) and sodium 11-methacrylamidoundecanate (MaU) was prepared via conventional radical polymerization, which formed a unimer micelle under acidic conditions due to intramolecular hydrophobic interactions between the pendant undecanoic acid groups. Under basic conditions, unimer micelles were opened up to an expanded chain conformation by electrostatic repulsion between the pendant sulfonate and undecanoate anions. A cationic diblock copolymer (P163M99) consisting of poly(3-(methacrylamido)propyl)trimethylammonium chloride (PMAPTAC) and hydrophilic polybetaine, 2-(methacryloyloxy)ethylphosphorylcholine (MPC), blocks was prepared via controlled radical polymerization. Mixing of p(A/MaU) and P163M99 in 0.1 M aqueous NaCl under acidic conditions resulted in the formation of spherical polyion complex (PIC) micelles and vesicles, depending on polymer concentration before mixing. Shapes of the PIC micelles and vesicles changed under basic conditions due to collapse of the charge balance between p(A/MaU) and P163M99. The PIC vesicles can incorporate nonionic hydrophilic guest molecules, and the PIC micelles and vesicles can accept hydrophobic guest molecules in the hydrophobic core formed from p(A/MaU). PMID:27048989

  13. Phase separations in a copolymer copolymer mixture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Jin-Jun; Jin, Guojun; Ma, Yuqiang

    2006-01-01

    We propose a three-order-parameter model to study the phase separations in a diblock copolymer-diblock copolymer mixture. The cell dynamical simulations provide rich information about the phase evolution and structural formation, especially the appearance of onion-rings. The parametric dependence and physical reason for the domain growth of onion-rings are discussed.

  14. PEG-PLA diblock copolymer micelle-like nanoparticles as all-trans-retinoic acid carrier: in vitro and in vivo characterizations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Yuan; Qi, Xian Rong; Maitani, Yoshie; Nagai, Tsuneji

    2009-02-01

    The purpose of this study was to characterize the properties in vitro, i.e. release, degradation, hemolytic potential and anticancer activity, and in vivo disposition of all-trans-retinoic acid (ATRA) in rats after administration of ATRA-loaded micelle-like nanoparticles. The amphiphilic block copolymers consisted of a micellar shell-forming mPEG block and a core-forming PLA block. The mPEG-PLA nanoparticles prepared by an acetone volatilization dialysis procedure were identified as having core-shell structure by 1H NMR spectroscopy. Critical association concentration, drug contents, loading efficiency, particle size and ξ potential were evaluated. The release of ATRA from the nanoparticles and the degradation of PLA were found to be mostly associated with the compositions of the nanoparticles. ATRA release was faster at smaller molecular weight of copolymer and lower drug contents. In vitro, the incorporation of ATRA in mPEG-PLA nanoparticles reduced the hemolytic potential of ATRA. Furthermore, anticancer activity of ATRA against HepG2 cell was increased by encapsulation, which showed an enhancement of tumor treatment of ATRA. In vivo, after intravenous injection to rats, the levels of ATRA in the blood stream and the bioavailability were higher for ATRA-loaded mPEG-PLA nanoparticles than those for ATRA solution. In conclusion, the structure of the mPEG-PLA diblock copolymer could be modulated to fit the demand of in vitro and in vivo characterizations of nanoparticles. The mPEG-PLA nanoparticles' loading ATRA have a promising future for injection administration.

  15. Compatibilization of All-Conjugated Polymer Blends for Organic Photovoltaics.

    PubMed

    Lombeck, Florian; Sepe, Alessandro; Thomann, Ralf; Friend, Richard H; Sommer, Michael

    2016-08-23

    Compatibilization of an immiscible binary blend comprising a conjugated electron donor and a conjugated electron acceptor polymer with suitable electronic properties upon addition of a block copolymer (BCP) composed of the same building blocks is demonstrated. Efficient compatibilization during melt-annealing is feasible when the two polymers are immiscible in the melt, i.e. above the melting point of ∼250 °C of the semicrystalline donor polymer P3HT. To generate immiscibility at these high temperatures, the acceptor polymer PCDTBT is equipped with fluorinated side chains leading to an increased Flory-Huggins interaction parameter. Compatibilization in bulk and thin films is demonstrated, showing that the photovoltaic performance of pristine microphase separated and nanostructured BCPs can also be obtained for compatibilized blend films containing low contents of 10-20 wt % BCP. Thermodynamically stable domain sizes range between several tens of microns for pure blends and ∼10 nm for pure block copolymers. In addition to controlling domain size, the amount of block copolymer added dictates the ratio of edge-on and face-on P3HT crystals, with compatibilized films showing an increasing amount of face-on P3HT crystals with increasing amount of compatibilizer. This study demonstrates the prerequisites and benefits of compatibilizing all-conjugated semicrystalline polymer blends for organic photovoltaics. PMID:27482842

  16. Extraordinary boundary morphologies of large-scale ordered domains of spheres in thin films of a narrowly dispersed diblock copolymer via thermodynamic control.

    PubMed

    Shi, Ling-Ying; Li, Hang; Lei, Wei-Wei; Ni, Wei; Ran, Rong; Pan, Yu; Fan, Xing-He; Shen, Zhihao

    2015-11-14

    Long-range ordering of body centered cubic (BCC) spheres and various extraordinary morphologies at the boundaries of the adjacent orderly oriented domains are observed in thermally annealed thin films of a series of specific narrowly dispersed diblock copolymers, poly(dimethylsiloxane)-b-poly{2,5-bis[(4-butoxyphenyl)oxycarbonylstyrene} (PDMS-b-PBPCS, DB). The series of asymmetrical DB block copolymers (BCPs) with volume fractions of PDMS (f(PDMS)'s) from 10% to 23% self-assemble into thermodynamically stable body centered cubic (BCC) nanostructures in bulk at ambient temperature after thermal annealing. The thin films of these BCPs with a relatively large film thickness on a carbon-film coated substrate are annealed in a vacuum at 180 °C for 3 days and are characterized by transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). For all thin films of these BCPs, micrometer-scale domains with a rectangular unit cell similar to the projection of the BCC lattice along the [110] direction to the substrate are observed. And the XPS results indicate that the surface layers of the thin films are composed of both PDMS and PBPCS blocks. For the thin films of the BCPs with f(PDMS) values of 10% and 13%, the neighboring [110]-oriented BCC domains match well with each other, and the boundaries are defect-free. For the thin film of the BCP with a f(PDMS) value of 23%, the PDMS spheres in the [110]-oriented BCC domains in the TEM micrograph are overlapped with each other, and interesting morphologies including defect-free interfaces, interfaces with line defects, and domains with defects and local ordering are observed at the boundaries of the neighboring [110]-oriented domains. PMID:26456491

  17. Final Report: Grant DE-FG02-05ER15682. Simulation of Complex Microphase Formation in Pure and Nanoparticle-filled Diblock Copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    Fernando A. Escobedo

    2009-11-18

    The goal of this project was to use molecular simulation to quantify the impact of additives on the onset and structure of bicontinuous phases in linear diblock copolymers (DBC). The focus was on understanding how additives with selective affinity for a given block will distribute and perturb the structure of complex bicontinuous phases (like gyroid, double diamond, and plumbers nightmare whose minority component block forms two interweaving 3D networks) in DBCs; it was hypothesized that a suitable choice of additive type, size, affinity, and concentration may suppress or stabilize a particular bicontinuous phase. The ultimate goal in this line of investigation is to elucidate the rational design of the optimal additive for which the composition range of stability of a particular bicontinuous phase is maximized. Ours are the first published simulation studies to report on the formation of the gyroid phase in DBC melts and of other bicontinuous phases in DBC-modified by homopolymer. The following tasks were carried out: (i) simulation of bicontinuous phases of pure DBCs via both on-lattice Monte Carlo simulations and continuum-space Monte Carlo and molecular dynamics simulations, (ii) determination of the effect of selective additives (homopolymer) of different sizes on such bicontinuous phases, and (iii) development of novel Monte Carlo methods to map out reliable phase diagrams and improve ergodic sampling; in particular, optimized expanded-ensemble techniques for measuring free-energies and for chemical potential equilibration.

  18. A pulsed field gradient nuclear magnetic resonance study of a ternary homopolymer/diblock copolymer blend in the bicontinuous microemulsion phase

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Groger, Stefan; Rittig, Frank; Stallmach, Frank; Almdal, Kristoffer; Stepanek, Petr; Papadakis, Christine M.

    2002-07-01

    Pulsed field gradient (PFG) nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) was applied to study self-diffusion in a ternary blend containing equal molar volumes of the homopolymers poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS) and poly(ethylethylene) (PEE), and the nearly symmetric PDMS-PEE diblock copolymer. The blend forms a bicontinuous microemulsion (BmuE) below approx83 degC, while it is in the disordered state at higher temperatures. PFG NMR has also been applied to the individual components of the blend. In the blend, we find one diffusional process in the disordered state and two diffusional processes in the BmuE state. The fast process in the BmuE is due to the diffusion of the PDMS homopolymers through the BmuE. This diffusion is ten times slower than that of bulk PDMS at the same temperature, indicating restricted diffusion of PDMS in the BmuE. The diffusion coefficient of the slower process in the ternary blend is slightly increased compared with bulk PEE. It is tentatively assigned to PEE self-diffusion. The changes in homopolymer diffusivities are semiquantitatively explained in terms of a model taking into account the tortuosity of the BmuE as well as the fast exchange of homopolymers between the domains and the difference in viscosities of the PEE and the PDMS domains. Our results are compared with data obtained previously on the identical sample with dynamic light scattering experiments [T. L. Morkved [et al.], Faraday Discuss. 112, 335 (1998)].

  19. Size-exclusion properties of nanoporous films derived from polystyrene-poly(methylmethacrylate) diblock copolymers assessed using direct electrochemistry of ferritin.

    PubMed

    Li, Yongxin; Ito, Takashi

    2009-01-15

    This paper reports the size-exclusion properties of nanoporous films derived from polystyrene-poly(methylmethacrylate) diblock copolymers (PS-b-PMMA) for biomacromolecules. These properties were assessed by measuring cyclic voltammetry of ferritin (12 nm in diameter) adsorbed onto recessed nanodisk-array gold electrodes (RNEs) fabricated from the nanoporous films having different effective pore diameters and surface functionalities. RNEs having 20-nm-diameter nanopores modified with a poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) layer showed the redox currents of ferritin after their immersion in a ferritin solution (5 mg/mL) for longer than 2 h. The currents originated from the direct electron transfer reaction of ferritin molecules immobilized on the underlying gold surface as a result of their penetration through the 20-nm-diameter nanopores. The PEG modification of the nanopore surface was required for the penetration of ferritin, probably because it reduced the nonspecific adsorption of ferritin to the nanopore surface. In contrast, no redox current of ferritin was observed for RNEs having PEG-modified 15-nm-diameter nanopores after their immersion in the ferritin solution for 12 h, indicating the size-exclusion of ferritin from the 15-nm nanopores. The distinct size-exclusion properties of the PS-b-PMMA-derived nanoporous films reflect their uniform diameters and shapes and will provide a means for fabricating separation membranes for biomolecules with high size-based selectivity. PMID:19072057

  20. Custom-made morphologies of ZnO nanostructured films templated by a poly(styrene-block-ethylene oxide) diblock copolymer obtained by a sol-gel technique.

    PubMed

    Sarkar, Kuhu; Rawolle, Monika; Herzig, Eva M; Wang, Weijia; Buffet, Adeline; Roth, Stephan V; Müller-Buschbaum, Peter

    2013-08-01

    Zinc oxide (ZnO) nanostructured films are synthesized on silicon substrates to form different morphologies that consist of foamlike structures, wormlike aggregates, circular vesicles, and spherical granules. The synthesis involves a sol-gel mechanism coupled with an amphiphilic diblock copolymer poly(styrene-block-ethylene oxide), P(S-b-EO), which acts as a structure-directing template. The ZnO precursor zinc acetate dihydrate (ZAD) is incorporated into the poly(ethylene oxide) block. Different morphologies are obtained by adjusting the weight fractions of the solvents and ZAD. The sizes of the structure in solution for different sol-gels are probed by means of dynamic light scattering. Thin-film samples with ZnO nanostructures are prepared by spin coating and solution casting followed by a calcination step. On the basis of various selected combinations of weight fractions of the ingredients used, a ternary phase diagram is constructed to show the compositional boundaries of the investigated morphologies. The evolution and formation mechanisms of the morphologies are addressed in brief. The surface morphologies of the ZnO nanostructures are studied with SEM. The inner structures of the samples are probed by means of grazing incidence small-angle X-ray scattering to complement the SEM investigations. XRD measurements confirm the crystallization of the ZnO in the wurtzite phase upon calcination of the nanocomposite film in air. The optical properties of ZnO are analyzed by FTIR and UV/Vis spectroscopy. PMID:23881752

  1. Sequential pH-dependent adsorption of ionic amphiphilic diblock copolymer micelles and choline oxidase onto conductive substrates: toward the design of biosensors.

    PubMed

    Sigolaeva, Larisa V; Günther, Ulrike; Pergushov, Dmitry V; Gladyr, Snezhana Yu; Kurochkin, Ilya N; Schacher, Felix H

    2014-07-01

    This work examines the fabrication regime and the properties of polymer-enzyme thin-films adsorbed onto conductive substrates (graphite or gold). The films are formed via two-steps, sequential adsorption of poly(n-butylmethacrylate)-block-poly(N,N-dimethylaminoethyl methacrylate) (PnBMA-b-PDMAEMA) diblock copolymer micelles (1st step of adsorption), followed by the enzyme choline oxidase (ChO) (2nd step of adsorption). The solution properties of both adsorbed components are studied and the pH-dependent step-by-step fabrication of polymer-enzyme biosensor coatings reveals rather drastic differences in their enzymatic activities in dependence on the pH of both adsorption steps. The resulting hybrid thin-films represent highly active biosensors for choline with a low detection limit of 30 nM and a good linearity in a range between 30 nM and 100 μM. The sensitivity is found to be 175 μA mM(-1) cm(-2) and the operational stability of the polymer-enzyme thin-films can be additionally improved via enzyme-to-enzyme crosslinking with glutaraldehyde. PMID:24740608

  2. Effect of Small Molecule Osmolytes on the Self-Assembly and Functionality of Globular Protein-Polymer Diblock Copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    Thomas, Carla S.; Xu, Liza; Olsen, Bradley D.

    2013-12-05

    Blending the small molecule osmolytes glycerol and trehalose with the model globular protein–polymer block copolymer mCherry-b-poly(N-isopropyl acrylamide) (mCherry-b-PNIPAM) is demonstrated to improve protein functionality in self-assembled nanostructures. The incorporation of either additive into block copolymers results in functionality retention in the solid state of 80 and 100% for PNIPAM volume fractions of 40 and 55%, respectively. This represents a large improvement over the 50–60% functionality observed in the absence of any additive. Furthermore, glycerol decreases the thermal stability of block copolymer films by 15–20 °C, while trehalose results in an improvement in the thermal stability by 15–20 °C. These results suggest that hydrogen bond replacement is responsible for the retention of protein function but suppression or enhancement of thermal motion based on the glass transition of the osmolyte primarily determines thermal stability. While both osmolytes are observed to have a disordering effect on the nanostructure morphology with increasing concentration, this effect is less pronounced in materials with a larger polymer volume fraction. Glycerol preferentially localizes in the protein domains and swells the nanostructures, inducing disordering or a change in morphology depending on the PNIPAM coil fraction. In contrast, trehalose is observed to macrophase separate from the block copolymer, which results in nanodomains becoming more disordered without changing significantly in size.

  3. Complementary study based on DFT to describe the structure and properties relationship of diblock copolymer based on PVK and PPV

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mbarek, M.; Abbassi, F.; Alimi, K.

    2016-09-01

    The structure-properties relationships of copolymer involving N-vinylcarbazole (PVK) and poly (p-phenylene-vinylene) (PPV) blocks, denoted PVK-PPV, was investigated by calculations based on density functional theory (DFT) and completed by experimental analyses. Thus, vibrational, optical and emission spectra of model compound have been simulated and compared to the experiments observations published recently. Ionization potentials (IPs), electron affinities (EAs) and energy gaps were determined. Furthermore, quantum yields, radiative and nonradiative exciton lifetime was highlighted.

  4. Micellization of pH-responsive Amphiphilic Diblock Copolymers in Aqueous Media and the Formation of Metal Nanocrystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anastasiadis, Spiros H.

    2005-03-01

    External-stimuli responsive block copolymers, usually known as double-hydrophilic copolymers, respond to changes in their environment such as pH, temperature and salt concentration and undergo micellization in aqueous media. Micellization induced by controlling the solution pH is advantageous for certain applications in particular when fully hydrophobic cores are required. A category of such systems comprise a pH-sensitive (weak) basic or acidic block that forms the micelle core surrounded by a corona formed by a neutral hydrophilic block. In this work we investigate the micellization behavior and the metal-nanoparticle formation in poly(2-(diethylamino)ethyl methacrylate)-block-poly(hexa(ethylene glycol) methacrylate), PDEAEMA-b-PHEGMA, amphiphilic block copolymers in aqueous media. The hydrophobic PDEAEMA block is pH-sensitive: at low pH it can be protonated and it becomes partially or completely hydrophilic, leading to molecular solubility, whereas at higher pH micelles are formed; the behavior is studied by dynamic light scattering, 1H-NMR and atomic force microscopy. The micelles consist of a PDEAEMA core and a PHEGMA corona, where the core can dissolve metal compounds due to coordination. In all these micellar nanoreactors, metal nanoparticles nucleate and grow upon reduction with sizes in the range of a few nanometers as observed by transmission electron microscopy whereas X-ray diffraction verifies their nanocrystalline structure. These particles exhibit significantly enhanced catalytic properties for hydrogenation and oxidation reactions.

  5. Highly Flexible Self-Assembled V2O5 Cathodes Enabled by Conducting Diblock Copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    An, Hyosung; Mike, Jared; Smith, Kendall A.; Swank, Lisa; Lin, Yen-Hao; L. Pesek, Stacy; Verduzco, Rafael; Lutkenhaus, Jodie L.

    2015-09-22

    Mechanically robust battery electrodes are desired for applications in wearable devices, flexible displays, and structural energy and power. In this regard, the challenge is to balance mechanical and electrochemical properties in materials that are inherently brittle. Here, we demonstrate a unique water-based self-assembly approach that incorporates a diblock copolymer bearing electron- and ion-conducting blocks, poly(3-hexylthiophene)-block-poly(ethyleneoxide) (P3HT-b-PEO), with V2O5 to form a flexible, tough, carbon-free hybrid battery cathode. V2O5 is a promising lithium intercalation material, but it remains limited by its poor conductivity and mechanical properties. Our approach leads to a unique electrode structure consisting of interlocking V2O5 layers glued together with micellar aggregates of P3HT-b-PEO, which results in robust mechanical properties, far exceeding the those obtained from conventional fluoropolymer binders. Only 5 wt % polymer is required to triple the flexibility of V2O5, and electrodes comprised of 10 wt % polymer have unusually high toughness (293 kJ/m3) and specific energy (530 Wh/kg), both higher than reduced graphene oxide paper electrodes. Furthermore, addition of P3HT-b-PEO enhances lithium-ion diffusion, eliminates cracking during cycling, and boosts cyclability relative to V2O5 alone. These results highlight the importance of tradeoffs between mechanical and electrochemical performance, where polymer content can be used to tune both aspects.

  6. Testing the Vesicular Morphology to Destruction: Birth and Death of Diblock Copolymer Vesicles Prepared via Polymerization-Induced Self-Assembly

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS), electrospray ionization charge detection mass spectrometry (CD-MS), dynamic light scattering (DLS), and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) are used to characterize poly(glycerol monomethacrylate)55-poly(2-hydroxypropyl methacrylate)x (G55-Hx) vesicles prepared by polymerization-induced self-assembly (PISA) using a reversible addition–fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) aqueous dispersion polymerization formulation. A G55 chain transfer agent is utilized to prepare a series of G55-Hx diblock copolymers, where the mean degree of polymerization (DP) of the membrane-forming block (x) is varied from 200 to 2000. TEM confirms that vesicles with progressively thicker membranes are produced for x = 200–1000, while SAXS indicates a gradual reduction in mean aggregation number for higher x values, which is consistent with CD-MS studies. Both DLS and SAXS studies indicate minimal change in the overall vesicle diameter between x = 400 and 800. Fitting SAXS patterns to a vesicle model enables calculation of the membrane thickness, degree of hydration of the membrane, and the mean vesicle aggregation number. The membrane thickness increases at higher x values, hence the vesicle lumen must become smaller if the external vesicle dimensions remain constant. Geometric considerations indicate that this growth mechanism lowers the total vesicle interfacial area and hence reduces the free energy of the system. However, it also inevitably leads to gradual ingress of the encapsulated water molecules into the vesicle membrane, as confirmed by SAXS analysis. Ultimately, the highly plasticized membranes become insufficiently hydrophobic to stabilize the vesicle morphology when x exceeds 1000, thus this PISA growth mechanism ultimately leads to vesicle “death”. PMID:25526525

  7. Testing the vesicular morphology to destruction: birth and death of diblock copolymer vesicles prepared via polymerization-induced self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Warren, Nicholas J; Mykhaylyk, Oleksandr O; Ryan, Anthony J; Williams, Mark; Doussineau, Tristan; Dugourd, Philippe; Antoine, Rodolphe; Portale, Giuseppe; Armes, Steven P

    2015-02-11

    Small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS), electrospray ionization charge detection mass spectrometry (CD-MS), dynamic light scattering (DLS), and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) are used to characterize poly(glycerol monomethacrylate)55-poly(2-hydroxypropyl methacrylate)x (G55-Hx) vesicles prepared by polymerization-induced self-assembly (PISA) using a reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) aqueous dispersion polymerization formulation. A G55 chain transfer agent is utilized to prepare a series of G55-Hx diblock copolymers, where the mean degree of polymerization (DP) of the membrane-forming block (x) is varied from 200 to 2000. TEM confirms that vesicles with progressively thicker membranes are produced for x = 200-1000, while SAXS indicates a gradual reduction in mean aggregation number for higher x values, which is consistent with CD-MS studies. Both DLS and SAXS studies indicate minimal change in the overall vesicle diameter between x = 400 and 800. Fitting SAXS patterns to a vesicle model enables calculation of the membrane thickness, degree of hydration of the membrane, and the mean vesicle aggregation number. The membrane thickness increases at higher x values, hence the vesicle lumen must become smaller if the external vesicle dimensions remain constant. Geometric considerations indicate that this growth mechanism lowers the total vesicle interfacial area and hence reduces the free energy of the system. However, it also inevitably leads to gradual ingress of the encapsulated water molecules into the vesicle membrane, as confirmed by SAXS analysis. Ultimately, the highly plasticized membranes become insufficiently hydrophobic to stabilize the vesicle morphology when x exceeds 1000, thus this PISA growth mechanism ultimately leads to vesicle "death". PMID:25526525

  8. The preparation and characterization of the cross-linked spherical, cylindrical, and vesicular micelles of poly(styrene-b-isoprene) diblock copolymers.

    PubMed

    Park, Soo-Young; Park, Myeong-Hye

    2007-06-01

    PI cores of the micelles of poly(styrene-b-isoprene) (PS-b-PI) diblock copolymers, in PS selective solvents, were cross-linked with sulfur monochloride (S2Cl2). The cross-linked micellar structure was maintained after dialysis in THF (neutral solvent) and did not change during heating. Cross-linking brought about the opportunity for TEM images in a solution state; otherwise, the micellar structure would be destroyed (or changed) during the evaporation of the solvent on a carbon-coated copper grid. The Flory interaction parameter, chi, between the PI block and the solvent was controlled by mixing two selective solvents (DMP/toluene, DMP/DEP and DEP/DBP) which have different degrees of selectivity for the PS block, as well as heating the solutions. Two block copolymers, PS(7.2K)-b-PI(7.8K) and PS(5.5K)-b-PI(18.8K), were studied in order to clarify the effects of the relative chain length of each block on the micelle structure in the selective solvents. PS(7.2K)-b-PI(7.8K), which is nearly symmetric, showed only spherical micelles in the DMP/toluene mixture. The basic spherical micellar shape of PS(7.2K)-b-PI(7.8K) did not change with chi, while the size and aggregation number of the micelles increased as chi increased until 2.05 and then were saturated after that. PS(5.5K)-b-PI(18.8K), which is asymmetric, showed a structural change from spherical to cylindrical to vesicular micelles with an increase in the selectivity of the DMP/DEP and DEP/DBP mixtures (which was also confirmed by TEM and SAXS studies). Giant vesicular micelles with a diameter of approximately 2.5 microm were observed in high-selectivity solvents. The size of the vesicular micelle seemed to decrease as selectivity decreased. The systematic changes of the micellar structures of PS(5.5K)-b-PI(18.8K), via changes in solvent selectivity, could be demonstrated through TEM images, which were prepared by evaporating the solvent of the cross-linked micellar solution onto the carbon-coated grid after

  9. On the spectral behavior of an ionic styryl dye: effect of micelle-polyethylene-block-polyethylene glycol diblock copolymer assembly.

    PubMed

    Sahoo, Dibakar; Bhattacharya, Prosenjit; Chakravorti, Sankar

    2009-10-15

    The interaction of anionic micelle sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) and amphiphilic block copolymers polyethylene-b-polyethylene glycol (PE-b-PEG) and the sharp change of excited-state charge-transfer complex photophysics of 2-(4-(dimethylamino)styryl)-1-methylpyridinium iodide (DASPMI) inside of the supramolecular assembly have been addressed in the paper. The dramatic enhancement of emission intensity of DASPMI incorporated inside of the nanostructure formed by micellar and polymeric chains indicates a completely different environment compared to that in the water and micellar system. A huge increase in the rotational relaxation time obtained from time-resolved anisotropy decay and the value of the order parameter is indicative of a very restrictive regime in the self-assembly system. The wobbling and translational motion of the probe is also restricted inside of the micelle-polymer aggregate due to the presence of polymer chains. The translational diffusion coefficient is drastically reduced due to the aggregation. PMID:19761273

  10. Selective confinement of oleylamine capped Au nanoparticles in self-assembled PS-b-PEO diblock copolymer templates.

    PubMed

    Di Mauro, A Evelyn; Striccoli, Marinella; Depalo, Nicoletta; Fanizza, Elisabetta; Cano, Laida; Ingrosso, Chiara; Agostiano, Angela; Curri, M Lucia; Tercjak, Agnieszka

    2014-03-21

    Amphiphilic polystyrene-block-polyethylene oxide (PS-b-PEO) block copolymers (BCPs) have been demonstrated to be effective in directing organization of colloidal Au nanoparticles (NPs). Au NPs have been incorporated into the polymer and the different chemical affinity between the NP surface and the two blocks of the BCP has been used as a driving force of the assembling procedure. The morphology of the nanocomposites, prepared and fabricated as thin films, has been investigated by means of atomic force and scanning electron microscopies as a function of the NP content and BCP molecular weight. NPs have been effectively dispersed in PS-b-PEO hosts at any investigated content (up to 17 wt%) and a clear effect of the BCP properties on the final nanocomposite morphology has been highlighted. Finally, electrostatic force microscopy has demonstrated the conductive properties of the nanocomposite films, showing that the embedded Au NPs effectively convey their conductive properties to the film. The overall investigation has confirmed the selective confinement of the as-prepared surfactant-coated metal NPs in the PS block of PS-b-PEO, thus proposing a very simple and prompt assembling tool for nanopatterning, potentially suitable for optoelectronic, sensing and catalysis applications. PMID:24800269

  11. Disulfide-Based Diblock Copolymer Worm Gels: A Wholly-Synthetic Thermoreversible 3D Matrix for Sheet-Based Cultures.

    PubMed

    Simon, Karen A; Warren, Nicholas J; Mosadegh, Bobak; Mohammady, Marym R; Whitesides, George M; Armes, Steven P

    2015-12-14

    It is well-known that 3D in vitro cell cultures provide a much better model than 2D cell cultures for understanding the in vivo microenvironment of cells. However, significant technical challenges in handling and analyzing 3D cell cultures remain, which currently limits their widespread application. Herein, we demonstrate the application of wholly synthetic thermoresponsive block copolymer worms in sheet-based 3D cell culture. These worms form a soft, free-standing gel reversibly at 20-37 °C, which can be rapidly converted into a free-flowing dispersion of spheres on cooling to 5 °C. Functionalization of the worms with disulfide groups was found to be essential for ensuring sufficient mechanical stability of these hydrogels to enable long-term cell culture. These disulfide groups are conveniently introduced via statistical copolymerization of a disulfide-based dimethacrylate under conditions that favor intramolecular cyclization and subsequent thiol/disulfide exchange leads to the formation of reversible covalent bonds between adjacent worms within the gel. This new approach enables cells to be embedded within micrometer-thick slabs of gel with good viability, permits cell culture for at least 12 days, and facilitates recovery of viable cells from the gel simply by incubating the culture in buffer at 4 °C (thus, avoiding the enzymatic degradation required for cell harvesting when using commercial protein-based gels, such as Matrigel). PMID:26509930

  12. The Effect of Small Molecule Additives on the Self-Assembly and Functionality of Protein-Polymer Diblock Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, Carla; Xu, Liza; Olsen, Bradley

    2013-03-01

    Self-assembly of globular protein-polymer block copolymers into well-defined nanostructures provides a route towards the manufacture of protein-based materials which maintains protein fold and function. The model material mCherry-b-poly(N-isopropyl acrylamide) forms self-assembled nanostructures from aqueous solutions via solvent evaporation. To improve retention of protein functionality when dehydrated, small molecules such as trehalose and glycerol are added in solution prior to solvent removal. With as little as 10 wt% additive, improvements in retained functionality of 20-60% are observed in the solid-state as compared to samples in which no additive is present. Higher additive levels (up to 50%) continue to show improvement until approximately 100% of the protein function is retained. These large gains are hypothesized to originate from the ability of the additives to replace hydrogen bonds normally fulfilled by water. The addition of trehalose in the bulk material also improves the thermal stability of the protein by 15-20 °C, while glycerol decreases the thermal stability. Materials containing up to 50% additives remain microphase separated, and, upon incorporation of additives, nanostructure domain spacing tends to increase, accompanied by order-order transitions.

  13. Core-Corona Functionalization of Diblock Copolymer Micelles by Heterogeneous Metal Nanoparticles for Dual Modality in Chemical Reactions.

    PubMed

    Jo, Seong Ho; Kim, Hyun Woo; Song, Minkyung; Je, Nam Jin; Oh, Sung-Hoon; Chang, Byoung-Yong; Yoon, Jinhwan; Kim, Joo Hyun; Chung, Bonghoon; Yoo, Seong Il

    2015-08-26

    Nanoscale assemblies composed of different types of nanoparticles (NPs) can reveal interesting aspects about material properties beyond the functions of individual constituent NPs. This research direction may also represent current challenges in nanoscience toward practical applications. With respect to the assembling method, synthetic or biological nanostructures can be utilized to organize heterogeneous NPs in specific sites via chemical or physical interactions. However, those assembling methods often encounter uncontrollable particle aggregation or phase separation. In this study, we anticipated that the self-segregating properties of block copolymer micelles could be particularly useful for organizing heterogeneous NPs, because the presence of chemically distinct domains such as the core and the corona can facilitate the selective placement of constituent NPs in separate domains. Here, we simultaneously functionalized the core and the corona of micelles by Au NPs and Ag NPs, which exhibited plasmonic and catalytic functions, respectively. Our primary question is whether these plasmonic and catalytic functions can be combined in the assembled structures to engineer the kinetics of a model chemical reaction. To test this hypothesis, the catalytic reduction of 4-nitrophenol was selected to evaluate the collective properties of the micellar assemblies in a chemical reaction. PMID:26241213

  14. Crystallization in Ordered Polydisperse Polyolefin Diblock

    SciTech Connect

    Li, Sheng; Register, Richard A.; Landes, Brian G.; Hustad, Phillp D.; Weinhold, Jeffrey D.

    2010-08-27

    The morphologies of polydisperse ethylene-octene diblock copolymers, synthesized via a novel coordinative chain transfer polymerization process, are examined using two-dimensional synchrotron small-angle and wide-angle X-ray scattering on flow-aligned specimens. The diblock copolymers comprise one amorphous block with high 1-octene content and one semicrystalline block with relatively low 1-octene content, and each block ideally exhibits the most-probable distribution. Near-symmetric diblocks with a sufficiently large octene differential between the amorphous and semicrystalline blocks show well-ordered lamellar domain structures with long periods exceeding 100 nm. Orientation of these domain structures persists through multiple melting/recrystallization cycles, reflecting a robust structure which self-assembles in the melt. The domain spacings are nearly 3-fold larger than those in near-monodisperse polyethylene block copolymers of similar molecular weights. Although the well-ordered lamellar domain structure established in the melt is preserved in the solid state, the crystallites are isotropic in orientation. These materials display crystallization kinetics consistent with a spreading growth habit, indicating that the lamellae do not confine or template the growing crystals. The exceptionally large domain spacings and isotropic crystal growth are attributed to interblock mixing resulting from the large polydispersity; short hard blocks dissolved in the soft-block-rich domains swell the domain spacing in the melt and allow hard block crystallization to proceed across the lamellar domain interfaces.

  15. pH-induced vesicle-to-micelle transition in amphiphilic diblock copolymer: investigation by energy transfer between in situ formed polymer embedded gold nanoparticles and fluorescent dye.

    PubMed

    Maiti, Chiranjit; Banerjee, Rakesh; Maiti, Saikat; Dhara, Dibakar

    2015-01-01

    The ability to regulate the formation of nanostructures through self-assembly of amphiphilic block copolymers is of immense significance in the field of biology and medicine. In this work, a new block copolymer synthesized by using reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization technique from poly(ethylene glycol) monomethyl ether acrylate (PEGMA) and Boc-l-tryptophan acryloyloxyethyl ester (Boc-l-trp-HEA) was found to spontaneously form pH-responsive water-soluble nanostructures after removal of the Boc group. While polymer vesicles or polymerosomes were formed at physiological pH, the micelles were formed at acidic pH (< 5.2), and this facilitated a pH-induced reversible vesicle-to-micelle transition. Formation of these nanostructures was confirmed by different characterization techniques, viz. transmission electron microscopy, dynamic light scattering, and steady-state fluorescence measurements. Further, these vesicles were successfully utilized to reduce HAuCl4 and stabilize the resulting gold nanoparticles (AuNPs). These AuNPs, confined within the hydrophobic shell of the vesicles, could participate in energy transfer process with fluorescent dye molecules encapsulated in the core of the vesicles, thus forming a nanometal surface energy transfer (NSET) pair. Subsequently, following the efficiency of energy transfer between this pair, it was possible to monitor the process of transition from vesicles to micelles. Thus, in this work, we have successfully demonstrated that NSET can be used to follow the transition between nanostructures formed by amphiphilic block copolymers. PMID:25494810

  16. Mesoscale simulation of the formation and dynamics of lipid-structured poly(ethylene oxide)-block-poly(methyl methacrylate) diblock copolymers.

    PubMed

    Mu, Dan; Li, Jian-Quan; Feng, Sheng-Yu

    2015-05-21

    Twelve poly(ethylene oxide)-block-poly(methyl methacrylate) (PEO-b-PMMA) copolymers with lipid-like structures were designed and investigated by MesoDyn simulation. Spherical and worm-like micelles as well as bicontinuous, lamellar and defected lamellar phases were obtained. A special structure, designated B2412, with two lipid structures connected by their heads, was found to undergo four stages prior to forming a spherical micelle phase. Two possible assembly mechanisms were found via thermodynamic and dynamic process analyses; namely, the fusion and fission of micelles in dynamic equilibrium during the adjustment stage. Water can be encapsulated into these micelles, which can affect their size, particularly in low concentration aqueous solutions. The assignment of weak negative charges to the hydrophilic EO blocks resulted in a clear effect on micelle size. Surprisingly, the largest effect was observed with EO blocks with -0.5 e, wherein an ordered perfect hexagonal phase was formed. The obtained results can be applied in numerous fields of study, including adsorption, catalysis, controlled release and drug delivery. PMID:25898853

  17. A novel diblock of copolymer of (monomethoxy poly [ethylene glycol]-oleate) with a small hydrophobic fraction to make stable micelles/polymersomes for curcumin delivery to cancer cells

    PubMed Central

    Erfani-Moghadam, Vahid; Nomani, Alireza; Zamani, Mina; Yazdani, Yaghoub; Najafi, Farhood; Sadeghizadeh, Majid

    2014-01-01

    Curcumin is a potent natural anticancer agent, but its effectiveness is limited by properties such as very low solubility, high rate of degradation, and low rate of absorption of its hydrophobic molecules in vivo. To date, various nanocarriers have been used to improve the bioavailability of this hydrophobic biomaterial. This study investigates the encapsulation of curcumin in a novel nanostructure of monomethoxy poly(ethylene glycol)-oleate (mPEG-OA) and its anticancer effect. Tests were done to determine the critical micelle concentration (CMC), encapsulation efficiency, drug-loading efficiency, and cytotoxicity (against U87MG brain carcinoma cells and HFSF-PI3 cells as normal human fibroblasts) of some nanodevice preparations. The results of fluorescence microscopy and cell-cycle analyses indicated that the in vitro bioavailability of the encapsulated curcumin was significantly greater than that of free curcumin. Cytotoxicity evaluations showed that half maximal inhibitory concentrations of free curcumin and curcumin-loaded mPEG-OA for the U87MG cancer cell line were 48 μM and 24 μM, respectively. The Annexin-V-FLUOS assay was used to quantify the apoptotic effect of the prepared nanostructures. Apoptosis induction was observed in a dose-dependent manner after curcumin-loaded mPEG-OA treatments. Two common self-assembling structures, micelles and polymersomes, were observed by atomic force microscopy and dynamic light scattering, and the abundance of each structure was dependent on the concentration of the diblock copolymer. The mPEG-OA micelles had a very low CMC (13.24 μM or 0.03 g/L). Moreover, atomic force microscopy and dynamic light scattering showed that the curcumin-loaded mPEG-OA polymersomes had very stable structures, and at concentrations 1,000 times less than the CMC, at which the micelles disappear, polymersomes were the dominant structures in the dispersion with a reduced size distribution below 150 nm. Overall, the results from these tests

  18. Block copolymer nanolithography for the fabrication of patterned media.

    SciTech Connect

    Warke, Vishal V; Bakker, Martin G; Hong, Kunlun; Mays, Jimmy; Britt, Phillip F; Li, Xuefa; Wang, Jin

    2008-01-01

    Abstract Bit patterned perpendicular media has the potential to increase the density of magnetic recording beyond what can be achieved by granular media. Self assembling diblock copolymers are of interest as templates for patterned media, as they potentially provide a low cost fabrication route. A method to fabricate the desired pattern using cylinder forming diblock copolymers of (PS-b-PMMA) as template is reported. Upon phase separation hexagonally packed cylinders of the minority phase (PMMA) surrounded by the continuous majority phase (PS) are obtained. The processing sequence began with spin coating the block copolymer on a suitable substrate, followed by annealing the block copolymer thin film in vacuum to orient it perpendicular to the substrate. Block copolymer templates were obtained by glacial acetic acid treatment which opened the pores in the block copolymer thin film. Ni was electrodeposited in the block copolymer templates and this pattern was then transferred onto the underlying substrate by ion milling

  19. Structure property relations in glassy-semicrystalline block copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khanna, Vikram

    The ability of block copolymers to segregate into nanoscale morphologies makes them a versatile class of engineering materials. This work investigates the relation between the block copolymer structure and its mechanical properties, film dynamics and diffusion kinetics. The first part investigates the influence of structure on the mechanical properties of poly(cyclohexylethylene)-poly(ethylene) (PCHE-PE) block copolymer films. For lamellar block copolymers the mechanical properties depend significantly on the chain architecture (diblock, triblock and pentablock). Diblock copolymer films show complete failure at small strains and pentablock copolymer films show the toughest, response. Moreover, the orientation of the cylinders in a cylinder forming pentablock copolymer affects the toughness of the block copolymer films. In the second part, the effect of surface energy and chain architecture on the orientation of microdomains in the same block copolymer films is investigated. Cylindrical and lamellar triblock copolymers with a PE midblock orient their microdomains normal to the surface. However, a lamellar diblock copolymer prefers a parallel orientation of the sheets with an E surface. Moreover, a cylindrical triblock copolymer with a reduced surface energy poly(ethylene-butylene) midblock orders with the cylinder domains oriented parallel to the surface. Self-consistent field theory calculations suggest that the entropic cost of forming a wetting layer comprised entirely of looping blocks for the triblock architecture, a constraint absent in diblock copolymers, stabilizes the perpendicular orientation. Thus in triblock copolymers, parallel orientations are only stabilized when the surface energy of the midblock is small enough to compensate for this conformational penalty. Finally, a study of the diffusion kinetics of cylinder forming poly(styrene)-poly(ethylene) triblock (SES) and pentablock (SESES) copolymers suggests that for similar molecular weights SESES

  20. Controlling Domain Orientations in Thin Films of AB and ABA Block Copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    Vu, Thai; Mahadevapuram, Nikhila; Perera, Ginusha M.; Stein, Gila E.

    2012-03-15

    Domain orientations in thin films of lamellar copolymers are evaluated as a function of copolymer architecture, film thickness, and processing conditions. Two copolymer architectures are considered: An AB diblock of poly(styrene-b-methyl methacrylate) and an ABA triblock of poly(methyl methacrylate-b-styrene-b-methyl methacrylate). All films are cast on substrates that are energetically neutral with respect to the copolymer constituents. Film structures are evaluated with optical microscopy, atomic force microscopy, and grazing-incidence small-angle X-ray scattering. For AB diblock copolymers, the domain orientations are very sensitive to film thickness, annealing temperature, and imperfections in the 'neutral' substrate coating: Diblock domains are oriented perpendicular to the substrate when annealing temperature is elevated ({>=} 220 C) and defects in the substrate coating are minimized; otherwise, parallel or mixed parallel/perpendicular domain orientations are detected for most film thicknesses. For ABA triblock copolymers, the perpendicular domain orientation is stable for all the film thicknesses and processing conditions that were studied. The orientations of diblock and triblock copolymers are consistent with recent works that consider architectural effects when calculating the copolymer surface tension (Macromolecules 2006, 39, 9346 and Macromolecules 2010, 43, 1671). Significantly, the data demonstrate that triblocks are easier to process for applications in nanopatterning - in particular, when high-aspect-ratio nanostructures are required. However, both diblock and triblock films contain a high density of 'tilted' or bent domains, and these kinetically trapped defects should be minimized for most patterning applications.

  1. Block copolymer/ferroelectric nanoparticle nanocomposites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pang, Xinchang; He, Yanjie; Jiang, Beibei; Iocozzia, James; Zhao, Lei; Guo, Hanzheng; Liu, Jin; Akinc, Mufit; Bowler, Nicola; Tan, Xiaoli; Lin, Zhiqun

    2013-08-01

    Nanocomposites composed of diblock copolymer/ferroelectric nanoparticles were formed by selectively constraining ferroelectric nanoparticles (NPs) within diblock copolymer nanodomains via judicious surface modification of ferroelectric NPs. Ferroelectric barium titanate (BaTiO3) NPs with different sizes that are permanently capped with polystyrene chains (i.e., PS-functionalized BaTiO3NPs) were first synthesized by exploiting amphiphilic unimolecular star-like poly(acrylic acid)-block-polystyrene (PAA-b-PS) diblock copolymers as nanoreactors. Subsequently, PS-functionalized BaTiO3 NPs were preferentially sequestered within PS nanocylinders in the linear cylinder-forming polystyrene-block-poly(methyl methacrylate) (PS-b-PMMA) diblock copolymer upon mixing the BaTiO3 NPs with PS-b-PMMA. The use of PS-b-PMMA diblock copolymers, rather than traditional homopolymers, offers the opportunity for controlling the spatial organization of PS-functionalized BaTiO3 NPs in the PS-b-PMMA/BaTiO3 NP nanocomposites. Selective solvent vapor annealing was utilized to control the nanodomain orientation in the nanocomposites. Vertically oriented PS nanocylinders containing PS-functionalized BaTiO3 NPs were yielded after exposing the PS-b-PMMA/BaTiO3 NP nanocomposite thin film to acetone vapor, which is a selective solvent for PMMA block. The dielectric properties of nanocomposites in the microwave frequency range were investigated. The molecular weight of PS-b-PMMA and the size of BaTiO3 NPs were found to exert an apparent influence on the dielectric properties of the resulting nanocomposites.Nanocomposites composed of diblock copolymer/ferroelectric nanoparticles were formed by selectively constraining ferroelectric nanoparticles (NPs) within diblock copolymer nanodomains via judicious surface modification of ferroelectric NPs. Ferroelectric barium titanate (BaTiO3) NPs with different sizes that are permanently capped with polystyrene chains (i.e., PS-functionalized BaTiO3NPs) were

  2. Antimicrobial Graft Copolymer Gels.

    PubMed

    Harvey, Amanda C; Madsen, Jeppe; Douglas, C W Ian; MacNeil, Sheila; Armes, Steven P

    2016-08-01

    In view of the growing worldwide rise in microbial resistance, there is considerable interest in designing new antimicrobial copolymers. The aim of the current study was to investigate the relationship between antimicrobial activity and copolymer composition/architecture to gain a better understanding of their mechanism of action. Specifically, the antibacterial activity of several copolymers based on 2-(methacryloyloxy)ethyl phosphorylcholine [MPC] and 2-hydroxypropyl methacrylate (HPMA) toward Staphylococcus aureus was examined. Both block and graft copolymers were synthesized using either atom transfer radical polymerization or reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer polymerization and characterized via (1)H NMR, gel permeation chromatography, rheology, and surface tensiometry. Antimicrobial activity was assessed using a range of well-known assays, including direct contact, live/dead staining, and the release of lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), while transmission electron microscopy was used to study the morphology of the bacteria before and after the addition of various copolymers. As expected, PMPC homopolymer was biocompatible but possessed no discernible antimicrobial activity. PMPC-based graft copolymers comprising PHPMA side chains (i.e. PMPC-g-PHPMA) significantly reduced both bacterial growth and viability. In contrast, a PMPC-PHPMA diblock copolymer comprising a PMPC stabilizer block and a hydrophobic core-forming PHPMA block did not exhibit any antimicrobial activity, although it did form a biocompatible worm gel. Surface tensiometry studies and LDH release assays suggest that the PMPC-g-PHPMA graft copolymer exhibits surfactant-like activity. Thus, the observed antimicrobial activity is likely to be the result of the weakly hydrophobic PHPMA chains penetrating (and hence rupturing) the bacterial membrane. PMID:27409712

  3. Phase coexistence calculations via a unit-cell Gibbs ensemble formalism for melts of reversibly bonded block copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mester, Zoltan; Lynd, Nathaniel; Fredrickson, Glenn

    2013-03-01

    Melts of block copolymer blends can exhibit coexistence between compositionally and morphologically distinct phases. We derived a unit-cell approach for a field theoretic Gibbs ensemble formalism to rapidly map out such coexistence regions. We also developed a canonical ensemble model for the reversible reaction of supramolecular polymers and integrated it into the Gibbs ensemble scheme. This creates a faster method for generating phase diagrams in complex supramolecular systems than the usual grand canonical ensemble method and allows us to specify the system in experimentally accessible volume fractions rather than chemical potentials. The integrated approach is used to calculate phase diagrams for AB diblock copolymers reversibly reacting with B homopolymers to form a new diblocks we term ``ABB.'' For our case, we use a diblock that is sixty percent A monomer and a homopolymer that is the same length as the diblock. In the limits of infinite reaction favorability (large equilibrium constant), the system approaches cases of an ABB diblock-B homopolymer blend when the AB diblock is the limiting reactant and AB diblock-ABB diblock blend when the homopolymer is the limiting reactant. As reaction favorability is decreased, the phase boundaries shift towards higher homopolymer compositions so that sufficient reaction can take place to produce the ABB diblock that has a deciding role stabilizing the observed phases.

  4. Electrospinning of a functional perfluorinated block copolymer as a powerful route for imparting superhydrophobicity and corrosion resistance to aluminum substrates.

    PubMed

    Grignard, Bruno; Vaillant, Alexandre; de Coninck, Joel; Piens, Marcel; Jonas, Alain M; Detrembleur, Christophe; Jerome, Christine

    2011-01-01

    Superhydrophobic aluminum surfaces with excellent corrosion resistance were successfully prepared by electrospinning of a novel fluorinated diblock copolymer solution. Micro- and nanostructuration of the diblock copolymer coating was obtained by electrospinning which proved to be an easy and cheap electrospinning technology to fabricate superhydrophobic coating. The diblock copolymer is made of poly(heptadecafluorodecylacrylate-co-acrylic acid) (PFDA-co-AA) random copolymer as the first block and polyacrylonitrile (PAN) as the second one. The fluorinated block promotes hydrophobicity to the surface by reducing the surface tension, while its carboxylic acid functions anchor the polymer film onto the aluminum surface after annealing at 130 °C. The PAN block of this copolymer insures the stability of the structuration of the surface during annealing, thanks to the infusible character of PAN. It is also demonstrated that the so-formed superhydrophobic coating shows good adhesion to aluminum surfaces, resulting in excellent corrosion resistance. PMID:21141949

  5. Macroscopic phase decomposition in block copolymers driven by thermooxidative reactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fan, Shaobin

    Macroscopic phase separations have been observed in a commercial styrene- block-butadiene-block-styrene (SBS) triblock copolymer (Kraton 1102), an as-synthesized SBS triblock copolymer, an as-synthesized styrene-block-butadiene (SB) diblock copolymer and a commercial styrene-block-isoprene-block-styrene (SIS) triblock copolymer (Kraton 1107) at elevated temperatures. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report on macroscopic phase separations in neat copolymers, including block copolymers. The temporal evolution of the structure, growth dynamics, origin and mechanism of the macroscopic phase separations have been investigated. A theoretical model has been established to describe such phase separation in SB diblock copolymer and numerical simulations have been undertaken to predict the structure evolution and growth dynamics. For styrene-butadiene block copolymers, the phase transition process consists of the first and second phase separations. The origin of such phase separations is attributed to chain scission and crosslinking reactions due to thermooxidative degradation. The formation of phase separated domains is the result of separation of polystyrene-rich domains from polybutadiene-rich domains. A mechanism, termed secondary spinodal decomposition, has been proposed to explain second phase separation. It has also demonstrated that the theoretical model and numerical simulations capture the essential features of the experimental observations. Growth rate was seen to depend on phase separation as well as reaction kinetics. The universal scaling laws have been shown to be invalid in macroscopic phase separations of styrene-butadiene block copolymers. The macroscopic phase separation process is more complex in the SIS triblock copolymer. It consists of a first phase separation, phase dissolution and a second phase separation. The origin of such phase decompositions has been shown to be a progressive chain scission reaction during thermal oxidative

  6. Radical-cured block copolymer-modified thermosets

    SciTech Connect

    Redline, Erica M.; Francis, Lorraine F.; Bates, Frank S.

    2013-01-10

    Poly(ethylene-alt-propylene)-b-poly(ethylene oxide) (PEP-PEO) diblock copolymers were synthesized and added at 4 wt % to 2,2-bis[4-(2-hydroxy-3-methacryloxypropoxy)phenyl]propane (BisGMA), a monomer that cures using free radical chemistry. In separate experiments, poly(ethylene glycol) dimethacrylate (PEGDMA) was combined as a secondary monomer with BisGMA and the monomers were loaded with 4 wt % PEP-PEO. The diblock copolymers self-assembled into well-dispersed spherical micelles with PEP cores and PEO coronas. No appreciable change in the final extent of cure of the thermosets was caused by the addition of diblock copolymer, except in the case of BisGMA, where the addition of the block copolymer increased extent of cure by 12%. Furthermore, the extent of cure was increased by 29% and 37% with the addition of 25 and 50 wt % PEGDMA, respectively. Elastic modulus and fracture resistance were also determined, and the values indicate that the addition of block copolymers does not significantly toughen the thermoset materials. This finding is surprising when compared with the large increase in fracture resistance seen in block copolymer-modified epoxies, and an explanation is proposed.

  7. C-C coupling between trinitrothiophenes and triaminobenzenes: zwitterionic intermediates and new all-conjugated structures.

    PubMed

    Boga, C; Micheletti, G; Cino, S; Fazzini, S; Forlani, L; Zanna, N; Spinelli, D

    2016-05-01

    The reactions of 1,3,5-triaminobenzene derivatives with 2,3,4-trinitrothiophene and 2-bromo-3,4,5-trinitrothiophene gave new all-conjugated compounds bearing both an electron-withdrawing and an electron-donor moiety on the same unit. The reactions with 2,3,4-trinitrothiophene offered evidence, by NMR spectroscopy at low temperature, of the formation of new labile Wheland-Meisenheimer intermediates whereas at room temperature stable unexpected products derived from the attack of the nucleophile at C-4 with replacement of the nitro group were isolated. Their formation caused, in turn, the obtainment of a salt between 1-nitroso-2,4,6-triaminobenzenes and 2,4-dinitrothiophen-3-ol. The reactions with 2-bromo-3,4,5-trinitrothiophene produced in good yields the SNAr substitution product with the displacement of the bromide. All the new coupling products obtained are of applicative interest, considering the increasing concern for highly conjugated π-systems in solar energy conversion or optoelectronic devices. PMID:27075703

  8. Efficacy of Different Block Copolymers in Facilitating Microemulsion Phases in Polymer Blend Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pandav, Gunja; Ganesan, Venkat

    2014-03-01

    Polymeric microemulsions are formed in a narrow range of phase diagram when a blend of immiscible homopolymers is compatibilized by copolymers. In this study, we consider the ternary blend system of A and B homopolymers mixed with block copolymers containing A and B segments, and probe the efficacy of different copolymer configurations in promoting the formation of microemulsion phases. Specifically, we consider: (a) Monodisperse diblock copolymers; (b) Diblock copolymers with bidisperse molecular weights (MW); (c) Block copolymers having MW polydispersity in one of the blocks; (d) Diblock copolymers having monodisperse MW but bidispersity in average composition; and (e) Gradient copolymers exhibiting a linear variation in the average composition. Using single chain in mean field simulations effected in two dimensions, we probe the onset of formation and the width of the bicontinuous microemulsion channel in the ternary phase diagram of homopolymer blended with compatibilizer. We rationalize our results by explicitly quantifying the interfacial activity and the influence of fluctuation effects in the respective copolymer systems.

  9. Block and Graft Copolymers of Polyhydroxyalkanoates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marchessault, Robert H.; Ravenelle, François; Kawada, Jumpei

    2004-03-01

    Polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs) were modified for diblock copolymer and graft polymer by catalyzed transesterification in the melt and by chemical synthesis to extend the side chains of the PHAs, and the polymers were studied by transmission electron microscopy (TEM) X-ray diffraction, thermal analysis and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR). Catalyzed transesterification in the melt is used to produce diblock copolymers of poly[3-hydroxybutyrate] (PHB) and monomethoxy poly[ethylene glycol] (mPEG) in a one-step process. The resulting diblock copolymers are amphiphilic and self-assemble into sterically stabilized colloidal suspensions of PHB crystalline lamellae. Graft polymer was synthesized in a two-step chemical synthesis from biosynthesized poly[3-hydroxyoctanoate-co-3-hydroxyundecenoate] (PHOU) containing ca. 25 mol chains. 11-mercaptoundecanoic acid reacts with the side chain alkenes of PHOU by the radical addition creating thioether linkage with terminal carboxyl functionalities. The latter groups were subsequently transformed into the amide or ester linkage by tridecylamine or octadecanol, respectively, producing new graft polymers. The polymers have different physical properties than poly[3-hydroxyoctanoate] (PHO) which is the main component of the PHOU, such as non-stickiness and higher thermal stability. The combination of biosynthesis and chemical synthesis produces a hybrid thermoplastic elastomer with partial biodegradability.

  10. Regulating block copolymer phases via selective homopolymers.

    PubMed

    Yang, Shuang; Lei, Zhen; Hu, Nan; Chen, Er-Qiang; Shi, An-Chang

    2015-03-28

    The phase behavior of strongly segregated AB diblock copolymer and selective C homopolymer blends is examined theoretically using a combination of strong stretching theory (SST) and self-consistent field theory (SCFT). The C-homopolymer is immiscible with the B-blocks but strongly attractive with the A-blocks. The effect of homopolymer content on the order-order phase transitions is analyzed. It is observed that, for AB diblock copolymers with majority A-blocks, the addition of the C-homopolymers results in lamellar to cylindrical to spherical phase transitions because of the A/C complexation. For diblock copolymers with minor A-blocks, adding C-homopolymers leads to transitions from spherical or cylindrical morphology with A-rich core to lamellae to inverted cylindrical and spherical morphologies with B-rich core. The results from analytical SST and numerical SCFT are in good agreement within most regions of the phase diagram. But the deviation becomes more obvious when the composition of A-blocks is too small and the content of added C-homopolymers is large enough, where the SCFT predicts a narrow co-existence region between different ordered phases. Furthermore, it is found that the phase behavior of the system is insensitive to the molecular weight of C-homopolymer. PMID:25833605

  11. Regulating block copolymer phases via selective homopolymers

    SciTech Connect

    Yang, Shuang E-mail: eqchen@pku.edu.cn; Lei, Zhen; Hu, Nan; Chen, Er-Qiang E-mail: eqchen@pku.edu.cn; Shi, An-Chang

    2015-03-28

    The phase behavior of strongly segregated AB diblock copolymer and selective C homopolymer blends is examined theoretically using a combination of strong stretching theory (SST) and self-consistent field theory (SCFT). The C-homopolymer is immiscible with the B-blocks but strongly attractive with the A-blocks. The effect of homopolymer content on the order-order phase transitions is analyzed. It is observed that, for AB diblock copolymers with majority A-blocks, the addition of the C-homopolymers results in lamellar to cylindrical to spherical phase transitions because of the A/C complexation. For diblock copolymers with minor A-blocks, adding C-homopolymers leads to transitions from spherical or cylindrical morphology with A-rich core to lamellae to inverted cylindrical and spherical morphologies with B-rich core. The results from analytical SST and numerical SCFT are in good agreement within most regions of the phase diagram. But the deviation becomes more obvious when the composition of A-blocks is too small and the content of added C-homopolymers is large enough, where the SCFT predicts a narrow co-existence region between different ordered phases. Furthermore, it is found that the phase behavior of the system is insensitive to the molecular weight of C-homopolymer.

  12. Research Update: Triblock copolymers as templates to synthesize inorganic nanoporous materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Yunqi; Bastakoti, Bishnu Prasad; Yamauchi, Yusuke

    2016-04-01

    This review focuses on the application of triblock copolymers as designed templates to synthesize nanoporous materials with various compositions. Asymmetric triblock copolymers have several advantages compared with symmetric triblock copolymers and diblock copolymers, because the presence of three distinct domains can provide more functional features to direct the resultant nanoporous materials. Here we clearly describe significant contributions of asymmetric triblock copolymers, especially polystyrene-block-poly(2-vinylpyridine)-block-poly(ethylene oxide) (abbreviated as PS-b-P2VP-b-PEO).

  13. Arbitrary lattice symmetries via block copolymer nanomeshes

    PubMed Central

    Majewski, Pawel W.; Rahman, Atikur; Black, Charles T.; Yager, Kevin G.

    2015-01-01

    Self-assembly of block copolymers is a powerful motif for spontaneously forming well-defined nanostructures over macroscopic areas. Yet, the inherent energy minimization criteria of self-assembly give rise to a limited library of structures; diblock copolymers naturally form spheres on a cubic lattice, hexagonally packed cylinders and alternating lamellae. Here, we demonstrate multicomponent nanomeshes with any desired lattice symmetry. We exploit photothermal annealing to rapidly order and align block copolymer phases over macroscopic areas, combined with conversion of the self-assembled organic phase into inorganic replicas. Repeated photothermal processing independently aligns successive layers, providing full control of the size, symmetry and composition of the nanoscale unit cell. We construct a variety of symmetries, most of which are not natively formed by block copolymers, including squares, rhombuses, rectangles and triangles. In fact, we demonstrate all possible two-dimensional Bravais lattices. Finally, we elucidate the influence of nanostructure on the electrical and optical properties of nanomeshes. PMID:26100566

  14. Computer simulations of block copolymer tethered nanoparticle self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chan, Elaine R.; Ho, Lin C.; Glotzer, Sharon C.

    2006-08-01

    We perform molecular simulations to study the self-assembly of block copolymer tethered cubic nanoparticles. Minimal models of the tethered nanoscale building blocks (NBBs) are utilized to explore the structures arising from self-assembly. We demonstrate that attaching a rigid nanocube to a diblock copolymer affects the typical equilibrium morphologies exhibited by the pure copolymer. Lamellar and cylindrical phases are observed in both systems but not at the corresponding relative copolymer tether block fractions. The effect of nanoparticle geometry on phase behavior is investigated by comparing the self-assembled structures formed by the tethered NBBs with those of their linear ABC triblock copolymer counterparts. The tethered nanocubes exhibit the conventional triblock copolymer lamellar and cylindrical phases when the repulsive interactions between different blocks are symmetric. The rigid and bulky nature of the cube induces interfacial curvature in the tethered NBB phases compared to their linear ABC triblock copolymer counterparts. We compare our results with those structures obtained from ABC diblock copolymer tethered nanospheres to further elucidate the role of cubic nanoparticle geometry on self-assembly.

  15. Theory of Chirality Transfer in Block Copolymer Melts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prasad, Ishan; Grason, Gregory

    Block copolymers assemble into a rich spectrum of ordered phases, with complexity driven by asymmetry in copolymer architecture. Despite decades of study, influence of intrinsic chirality on equilibrium mesophase assembly of block copolymers is not well understood and largely unexplored. Self-consistent field theory has been largely instrumental in prediction of physical properties of polymeric systems. Recently, a polar orientational self-consistent field (oSCF) theory was adopted to model chiral block copolymers having a thermodynamic preference for cholesteric ordering in chiral segments, and which confirmed the equilibrium stability of a helical cylinder morphology observed for chiral diblocks. Here, I describe a newly developed oSCF theory for chiral nematic copolymers, where segment orientations are characterized by quadrupolar interactions, and focus our study on intra-domain nematic ordering in flexible block copolymer assemblies, and in particular, mechanisms of transfer of segment chirality to mesochiral symmetries of self-assembled bicontinuous network morphologies.

  16. Stimuli-responsive polypeptide-based triblock copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ray, Jacob; Naik, Sandeep; Savin, Daniel

    2010-03-01

    Stimuli-responsive copolymers demonstrate diverse aggregation behavior in aqueous solution, where the molecular architecture and hydrophilic/hydrophobic content influences morphology. The solution morphology of poly(lysine)-b-poly(propylene oxide)-b-poly(lysine) (KPK) triblock copolymers with high lysine content (> 75 wt.%) will be compared with complementary KP diblock copolymers in the same phase range. Light scattering and TEM were used to determine aggregate size and morphology as a function of pH and temperature; furthermore, circular dichroism was used to measure helix-to-coil transitions of the K blocks. PK diblocks in this composition range yield spherical micelles over the entire pH range whereas KPK systems appear to exhibit morphological transitions with changing pH.

  17. Encapsulation of Curcumin in Diblock Copolymer Micelles for Cancer Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Alizadeh, Ali Mohammad; Sadeghizadeh, Majid; Najafi, Farhood; Ardestani, Sussan K.; Erfani-Moghadam, Vahid; Khaniki, Mahmood; Rezaei, Arezou; Zamani, Mina; Khodayari, Saeed; Khodayari, Hamid; Mohagheghi, Mohammad Ali

    2015-01-01

    Application of nanoparticles has recently promising results for water insoluble agents like curcumin. In this study, we synthesized polymeric nanoparticle-curcumin (PNPC) and then showed its efficiency, drug loading, stability, and safety. Therapeutic effects of PNPC were also assessed on two cell lines and in an animal model of breast cancer. PNPC remarkably suppressed mammary and hepatocellular carcinoma cells proliferation (P < 0.05). Under the dosing procedure, PNPC was safe at 31.25 mg/kg and lower doses. Higher doses demonstrated minimal hepatocellular and renal toxicity in paraclinical and histopathological examinations. Tumor take rate in PNPC-treated group was 37.5% compared with 87.5% in control (P < 0.05). Average tumor size and weight were significantly lower in PNPC group than control (P < 0.05). PNPC increased proapoptotic Bax protein expression (P < 0.05). Antiapoptotic Bcl-2 protein expression, however, was lower in PNPC-treated animals than the control ones (P < 0.05). In addition, proliferative and angiogenic parameters were statistically decreased in PNPC-treated animals (P < 0.05). These results highlight the suppressing role for PNPC in in vitro and in vivo tumor growth models. Our findings provide credible evidence for superior biocompatibility of the polymeric nanocarrier in pharmacological arena together with an excellent tumor-suppressing response. PMID:25793208

  18. The interaction effects on the adsorption properties of an alternating copolymer chain at liquid-liquid interface

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khattari, Z.; Hamasha, S.

    2014-09-01

    Analytical and numerical methods have been combined to investigate the effect of monomers-interfacial interactions on the behavior of a single alternating polymer chain at liquid-liquid interface. The exact Green's function of a Gaussian copolymer chain at attractive penetrable interface has been employed to determine monomer distribution profiles ρ(z), mean-square end-to-end distance and the interfacial tension Δγ of the alternating copolymer chain. A comparison between the diblock and alternating copolymer chain is presented. Our model shows that, the alternating copolymer adsorbs more readily than the diblock copolymer at liquid-liquid interface. Also, these copolymers are able to reduce the interfacial tension when presented at the interface.

  19. Directed Assembly of Lamellae Forming Block Copolymer Thin Films near the Order-Disorder Transition

    SciTech Connect

    Kim, Sangwon; Nealey, Paul F.; Bates, Frank S.

    2014-08-07

    The impact of thin film confinement on the ordering of lamellae was investigated using symmetric poly(styrene-b-[isoprene-ran-epoxyisoprene]) diblock copolymers bound by nonpreferential wetting interfaces. The order–disorder transition temperature (TODT) and the occurrence of composition fluctuations in the disordered state are not significantly affected by two-dimensional confinement. Directed self-assembly using chemical patterning is demonstrated near TODT. These results establish the minimum feature size attainable using directed self-assembly of a given diblock copolymer system.

  20. Self-Consistent Field Approach for Cross-Linked Copolymer Materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schmid, Friederike

    2013-07-01

    A generalized self-consistent field approach for polymer networks with a fixed topology is developed. It is shown that the theory reproduces the localization of cross-links, which is characteristic for gels. The theory is then used to study the order-disorder transition in regular networks of end-linked diblock copolymers. Compared to diblock copolymer melts, the transition is shifted towards lower values of the incompatibility parameter χ (the Flory- Huggins parameter). Moreover, the transition becomes strongly first order already at the mean-field level. If stress is applied, the transition is further shifted and finally vanishes in a critical point.

  1. Sequence-Specific Copolymer Compatibilizers designed via a Genetic Algorithm

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meenakshisundaram, Venkatesh; Patra, Tarak; Hung, Jui-Hsiang; Simmons, David

    For several decades, block copolymers have been employed as surfactants to reduce interfacial energy for applications from emulsification to surface adhesion. While the simplest approach employs symmetric diblocks, studies have examined asymmetric diblocks, multiblock copolymers, gradient copolymers, and copolymer-grafted nanoparticles. However, there exists no established approach to determining the optimal copolymer compatibilizer sequence for a given application. Here we employ molecular dynamics simulations within a genetic algorithm to identify copolymer surfactant sequences yielding maximum reductions the interfacial energy of model immiscible polymers. The optimal copolymer sequence depends significantly on surfactant concentration. Most surprisingly, at high surface concentrations, where the surfactant achieves the greatest interfacial energy reduction, specific non-periodic sequences are found to significantly outperform any regularly blocky sequence. This emergence of polymer sequence-specificity within a non-sequenced environment adds to a recent body of work suggesting that specific sequence may have the potential to play a greater role in polymer properties than previously understood. We acknowledge the W. M. Keck Foundation for financial support of this research.

  2. Light-emitting block copolymers composition, process and use

    DOEpatents

    Ferraris, John P.; Gutierrez, Jose J.

    2006-11-14

    Generally, and in one form, the present invention is a composition of light-emitting block copolymer. In another form, the present invention is a process producing a light-emitting block copolymers that intends polymerizing a first di(halo-methyl) aromatic monomer compound in the presence of an anionic initiator and a base to form a polymer and contacting a second di(halo-methyl) aromatic monomer compound with the polymer to form a homopolymer or block copolymer wherein the block copolymer is a diblock, triblock, or star polymer. In yet another form, the present invention is an electroluminescent device comprising a light-emitting block copolymer, wherein the electroluminescent device is to be used in the manufacturing of optical and electrical devices.

  3. Preparation and Morphology of ABn Mictoarm Block Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Takano, Atsushi; Watanabe, Momoka; Asai, Yusuke; Suzuki, Jiro; Matsushita, Yushu

    A series of ABn mictoarm block copolymers (bottle brush copolymers) consisting of polystyrene (S) as a backbone and polyisoprenes (I) as grafts were precisely synthesized by an anionic polymerization, and their microphase-separated structures were investigated by transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and small-angle X-ray scattering(SAXS). A copolymer with composition of φS =0.57 and number of grafts(n) of 10 shows characteristic cylindrical structure, where microdomains of S reveals hexagonal cross section with non-constant mean curvature interface. While a sample with composition of φS =0.37 and number of grafts(n) of 40 shows spherical structure with rather large S isolated domains and characteristic domain packing manner was found. Furthermore composition dependence of microphase-separated structures for SIn mictoarm block copolymers were investigated and compared to SI diblock copolymer system.

  4. Solvent enhanced block copolymer ordering in thin films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Misner, Matthew J.

    Diblock copolymer self-assembly of materials is emerging as a key element in the fabrication of functional nanostructured materials. By solvent casting or solvent annealing block copolymer thin films, we have demonstrated methods to produce diblock copolymer films with highly oriented, close-packed arrays of nanoscopic cylindrical domains with a high degree of long-range lateral order with few defects. The solvent imparts a high degree of mobility in the microphase-separated copolymer that enables a rapid removal of defects and a high degree of lateral order. Though the use of a selective cosolvent during solvent casting, it was found that the microdomain size and spacing could be increased, leading to a size-tunable system. Additionally, the presence of water also led to the ability to control the microdomain orientation during solvent annealing. Ionic complexation within cylinder-forming PS- b-EO block copolymer thin films was also investigated, where added salts bind PEO block as the minor component. Small amounts of added salts, on the order a few ions per chain, show large effects on the ordering of the copolymer films during solvent annealing. By using gold or cobalt salts, well-organized patterns of nanoparticles can be generated in the copolymer microdomains. Topographically and chemically patterned surfaces were used as a route to sectorizing and controlling the lattice orientation of copolymer films. Topographically patterned surfaces allow well-defined boundaries to confine the copolymer microdomains on a surface and effectively direct the ordering and grain orientation of the copolymer microdomains. Chemically patterned surfaces provide a route to direct the block copolymer ordering on completely flat surface, which may have advantages in applications where adding additional topography may be undesirable. To generate nanoporous templates from PS-b-PEO bases materials several routs were followed. The first route was through the addition and selective

  5. MEAN FIELD AND MONTE CARLO MODELING OF MULTIBLOCK COPOLYMERS

    SciTech Connect

    K. RASMUSSEN; ET AL

    2001-01-01

    The authors discuss and apply extensions needed to treat multiblock copolymers within the mean field theoretical framework for microphase separation in diblock copolymer metals, originally due to Leibler. The mean field calculations are complemented by lattice Monte Carlo realizations using the bond fluctuation model. They find that the microphase separation transition occurs at larger {sub {chi}}N as the number of blocks in increased beyond two (i.e., beyond diblock), and that the characteristic length scale of the emerging morphology decreases as the number of blocks increases. The latter prediction is in qualitative agreement with published experimental results due to Sontak and co-workers for model multiblock poly(styrene-isoprene) systems and recent results due to Hjelm and co-workers for a segmented poly(ester-urethane) relevant to Los Alamos interests. Additionally, the mean field predictions and bond fluctuation realizations yield consistent results.

  6. Frank-Kasper sigma phase stabilized by tailored architectures of block copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Weihua; Liu, Meijiao; Xie, Nan; Qiu, Feng; Shi, An-Chang

    Block copolymer self-assembly forms diverse interesting ordered morphologies, of which the spherical phase is of particular interest because it resembles the similar space symmetry as atomic crystals and has a tunable period on nanoscale. Moreover, the packing lattice of spherical domains dictated by the adjustable competition between the entropic and interfacial energies is programmable. For AB diblock copolymers, it has been known that the stable spherical phase is mainly bcc except for a very narrow region of fcc at the vicinity of the order-disorder transition. When introducing variable number of blocks and architectures to form complex AB-type block copolymers, the A15 phase was predicted as stable. However, a striking experiment observed a new spherical phase, the complex Frank-Kasper sigma phase that consists of 30 spheres in a unit cell, in the PI-b-PLA diblock copolymer as well as a SISO tetrablock terpolymer. Inspired by this experiment, we studied the stability of all known spherical phases of fcc, bcc, A15 and sigma in various block copolymers including conformationally asymmetric AB diblock, ABm miktoarm, and BABC tetrablock copolymers. We have revealed the formation mechanism of the nonclassical A15 and sigma phases due to the tailored architectures.

  7. Comparing Fluid and Elastic Block Copolymer Shells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rozairo, Damith; Croll, Andrew B.

    2014-03-01

    Emulsions can be stabilized with the addition of an amphiphilic diblock copolymer, resulting in droplets surrounded and protected by a polymer monolayer. Such droplets show considerable promise as advanced cargo carriers in pharmaceuticals or cosmetics due to their strength and responsiveness. Diblock copolymer interfaces remain mostly fluid and may not be able to attain the mechanical performance desired by industry. To strengthen block copolymer emulsion droplets we have developed a novel method for creating thin elastic shells using polystyrene-b-poly(acrylic acid)-b-polystyrene (PS-PAA-PS). Characterization of the fluid filled elastic shells is difficult with traditional means which lead us to develop a new and general method of mechanical measurement. Specifically, we use laser scanning confocal microscopy to achieve a high resolution measure of the deformation of soft spheres under the influence of gravity. To prove the resilience of the technique we examine both a polystyrene-b-poly(ethylene oxide) (PS-PEO) stabilized emulsion and the PS-PAA-PS emulsion. The mechanical measurement allows the physics of the polymer at the interface to be examined, which will ultimately lead to the rational development of these technologies.

  8. Controlling sub-microdomain structure in microphase-ordered block copolymers and their nanocomposites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bowman, Michelle Kathleen

    Block copolymers exhibit a wealth of morphologies that continue to find ubiquitous use in a diverse variety of mature and emergent (nano)technologies, such as photonic crystals, integrated circuits, pharmaceutical encapsulents, fuel cells and separation membranes. While numerous studies have explored the effects of molecular confinement on such copolymers, relatively few have examined the sub-microdomain structure that develops upon modification of copolymer molecular architecture or physical incorporation of nanoscale objects. This work will address two relevant topics in this vein: (i) bidisperse brushes formed by single block copolymer molecules and (ii) copolymer nanocomposites formed by addition of molecular or nanoscale additives. In the first case, an isomorphic series of asymmetric poly(styrene-b -isoprene-b-styrene) (S1IS2) triblock copolymers of systematically varied chain length has been synthesized from a parent SI diblock copolymer. Small-angle x-ray scattering, coupled with dynamic rheology and self-consistent field theory (SCFT), reveals that the progressively grown S2 block initially resides in the I-rich matrix and effectively reduces the copolymer incompatibility until a critical length is reached. At this length, the S2 block co-locates with the S1 block so that the two blocks generate a bidisperse brush (insofar as the S1 and S2 lengths differ). This single-molecule analog to binary block copolymer blends affords unique opportunities for materials design at sub-microdomain length scales and provides insight into the transition from diblock to triblock copolymer (and thermoplastic elastomeric nature). In the second case, I explore the distribution of molecular and nanoscale additives in microphase-ordered block copolymers and demonstrate via SCFT that an interfacial excess, which depends strongly on additive concentration, selectivity and relative size, develops. These predictions are in agreement with experimental findings. Moreover, using a

  9. Critical adsorption of copolymer tethered on selective surfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Hong; Qian, Chang-Ji; Luo, Meng-Bo

    2016-04-01

    Critical adsorption behaviors of flexible copolymer chains tethered to a flat homogeneous surface are studied by using Monte Carlo simulations. We have compared the critical adsorption temperature Tc, estimated by a finite-size scaling method, for different AB copolymer sequences with A the attractive monomer and B the inert monomer. We find that Tc increases with an increase in the fraction of monomers A, fA, in copolymers, and it increases with an increase in the length of block A for the same fA. In particular, Tc of copolymer (AnBn)r can be expressed as a function of the block length, n, and Tc of copolymer (AnB)r and (ABm)r can be expressed as a linear function of fA. Tc of random copolymer chains also can be expressed as a linear function of fA and it can be estimated by using weight-average of Tc of different diblocks in the random copolymer. However, the crossover exponent is roughly independent of AB sequence distributions either for block copolymers or for random copolymers.

  10. Arylenesiloxane copolymers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Breed, L. W.; Elliott, R. L.

    1967-01-01

    Arylenesiloxane copolymers with regularly ordered structures were discovered during efforts to develop organosilicon polymers. Arylenesilane and siloxane monomers were both synthesized in these experiments.

  11. On the Use of Self-Assembling Block Copolymers to Toughen A Model Epoxy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Yilin

    Block copolymers have been receiving considerable attention in toughening epoxy due to their ability to form a wide variety of nanostructures. This study focuses on using both triblock and diblock copolymers to improve the fracture toughness of an aromatic-amine cured epoxy system. The curing system consisted of 1,3- phenylenediamine (mPDA) as curing agent and aniline as a chain extender. Three triblock copolymers and three diblock copolymers were incorporated in the same lightly crosslinked model epoxy system, which was chosen to mimic an underfill material in flip-chip packaging for the microelectronics industry. In this research, rubber particles were formed in situ using self-assembling block copolymers. Mechanical, thermal and microscopic studies were conducted with the main goal to study the relationship between the block parameters and the final morphologies and their effects on static and dynamic mechanical properties of the toughened resin, especially fracture toughness. In these block-copolymer-modified epoxies, spherical micelles and wormlike micelles were obtained by varying block lengths, molecular weight, polarities and compositions. It was found that miscibility of the epoxy-miscible block played a crucial role in the formation of different types of morphologies. At a low loading level, diblock copolymers were able to toughen the model epoxy as effectively as triblock copolymers. The fracture toughness was improved to almost three times with respect to that of the neat resin with addition of 10 phr AM*-27. At the same time, other mechanical properties, such as yield strength and modulus, were well retained. Incorporation of block copolymers did not have a significant effect on glass transition temperature but caused an increase in coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE) of the modified epoxy. Particle cavitation and matrix void growth were proved to be the toughening mechanisms for SBM-Modified epoxies. However, these typical toughening mechanisms for

  12. Morphological Characteristics and Phase Behavior of Nanoparticle-Modified Block Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bowman, Michelle; Bockstaller, Michael; Rasmussen, Kim; Samseth, Jon; Smith, Steven; Thompson, Russell; Spontak, Richard

    2007-03-01

    Block copolymers exhibit a wealth of nanoscale morphologies that continue to find use in a diverse variety of emergent (nano)technologies. While numerous studies have explored the effects of molecular confinement on such copolymers, few have examined the use of such objects to modify the morphological characteristics and phase behavior of microphase-ordered block copolymers. In this work, a poly(styrene-b-methyl methacrylate) (SM) diblock copolymer has been modified with surface-functionalized fumed silica (FS) and colloidal silica (CS). Dynamic rheological measurements have been conducted on the neat and nanoparticle-modified copolymer to generate a quantitative comparison with SM/FS and SM/CS nanocomposites. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and self-consistent field theory (SCFT) calculations have also been performed to further elucidate results obtained via dynamic rheology by establishing the morphological characteristics of the copolymer and the dispersion of the functionalized nanoparticles within the resultant nanocomposites.

  13. Graft-through Synthesis and Assembly of Janus Bottlebrush Polymers from A-Branch-B Diblock Macromonomers.

    PubMed

    Kawamoto, Ken; Zhong, Mingjiang; Gadelrab, Karim R; Cheng, Li-Chen; Ross, Caroline A; Alexander-Katz, Alfredo; Johnson, Jeremiah A

    2016-09-14

    We report the synthesis of Janus bottlebrush block copolymers by graft-through polymerization of branched diblock macromonomers. Self-assembly of the bottlebrushes was characterized by small-angle X-ray scattering, atomic force microscopy, and scanning electron microscopy. Phase separation and packing models of the bottlebrushes were computed, and their self-assembly behavior was corroborated experimentally in bulk and in thin films. Lamellar, hexagonal cylinder, and gyroid phases were observed and modeled. The A-branch-B Janus bottlebrush structure provides several unique advantages in the context of bottlebrush polymer assembly, including access to the first examples of gyroid phases. PMID:27580971

  14. Theory and Simulations of Tapered Diblock Polymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hall, Lisa M.; Seo, Youngmi; Brown, Jonathan R.

    We study tapered block polymers, AB diblock polymers with a gradient region inserted between the pure A and B blocks such that composition smoothly transitions from A to B (or B to A in the case of inverse tapers). Phase diagrams were created using self consistent field theory (SCFT), and coarse-grained molecular dynamics (MD) simulations were used to study polymer conformations and diffusion, including diffusion of monomer-sized penetrants preferentially dissolved in one of the phases. As has been observed experimentally, we find that tapering makes the A and B blocks more miscible, decreasing domain spacing and shifting the order to disorder transition to lower temperatures. We predict a widening of the bicontinuous double gyroid region of the phase diagram for moderate length normal tapers versus diblocks, suggesting taper length can be used as a control parameter to obtain network phases even at high molecular weight, as may be desirable in transport applications. Additionally, in some inverse tapered systems, SCFT predicts phases not present in the standard AB diblock phase diagram, and MD simulations show how the chains fold back and forth across the interface. In these inverse tapered polymers, as segregation strength is increased, the competing effects of folding and stretching produces lamellae that have domain spacing nearly independent of temperature. We also find that diffusion of penetrants in normal tapers is significantly faster than that in inverse tapers, which is likely related to their unusual conformations. This material is based upon work supported by DOE Grant SC0014209.

  15. Influence of Architecture, Concentration, and Thermal History on the Poling of Nonlinear Optical Chromophores in Block Copolymer Domains

    SciTech Connect

    Leolukman, Melvina; Paoprasert, Peerasak; Wang, Yao; Makhija, Varun; McGee, David J.; Gopalan, Padma

    2008-10-02

    Factors affecting the electric-field-induced poling of nonlinear optical chromophores in block copolymer domains were investigated by encapsulating the chromophores in a linear-diblock copolymer [poly(styrene-b-4-vinylpyridine)] and linear-dendritic (poly(methyl methacrylate)-dendron) block copolymer via hydrogen bonding. Temperature-dependent Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy and morphology evaluation by X-ray scattering and transmission electron microscopy were used with in situ second harmonic generation to correlate domain architectures, processing conditions such as thermal history, and chromophore concentrations with poling efficiency. Poling of chromophores encapsulated in the minority domain (spheres or cylinders) of a linear-diblock copolymer was inhibited by the increasing chromophore concentration within the domain and the chemical nature of the majority domain. Chromophore encapsulation in the majority domain produced the most favorable conditions for poling as measured by in situ second harmonic generation. Thermal annealing of the linear-diblock copolymer/chromophore composites resulted in chromophore aggregation with a corresponding decrease in nonlinear optical activity. The linear-dendron/chromophore system presented the most effective architecture for spatially dispersing chromophores. These findings suggest that while well-ordered phase-separated systems such as block copolymers enhance chromophore isolation over homopolymer systems, a more effective approach is to explore polymer chains end functionalized with chromophores.

  16. Chain exchange in triblock copolymer micelles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lu, Jie; Lodge, Timothy; Bates, Frank

    2015-03-01

    Block polymer micelles offer a host of technological applications including drug delivery, viscosity modification, toughening of plastics, and colloidal stabilization. Molecular exchange between micelles directly influences the stability, structure and access to an equilibrium state in such systems and this property recently has been shown to be extraordinarily sensitive to the core block molecular weight in diblock copolymers. The dependence of micelle chain exchange dynamics on molecular architecture has not been reported. The present work conclusively addresses this issue using time-resolved small-angle neutron scattering (TR-SANS) applied to complimentary S-EP-S and EP-S-EP triblock copolymers dissolved in squalane, a selective solvent for the EP blocks, where S and EP refer to poly(styrene) and poly(ethylenepropylene), respectively. Following the overall SANS intensity as a function of time from judiciously deuterium labelled polymer and solvent mixtures directly probes the rate of molecular exchange. Remarkably, the two triblocks display exchange rates that differ by approximately ten orders of magnitude, even though the solvophobic S blocks are of comparable size. This discovery is considered in the context of a model that successfully explains S-EP diblock exchange dynamics.

  17. Using Tapered Block Copolymers to Create Conducting Nanomaterials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Epps, Thomas, III

    2014-03-01

    Soft materials, such as polymers, colloids, surfactants, and liquid crystals, are a technologically important class of matter employed in a variety of applications. One sub-class of soft material, block copolymers, provides the opportunity to design materials with attractive chemical and mechanical properties based on the ability to assemble into periodic structures with nanoscale domain spacings. Several applications for block copolymers currently under investigation in my group include battery and fuel cell membranes, analytical separations membranes, nano-tool templates, precursors to electronic arrays, and drug delivery vehicles. One area of recent progress in the group focuses on the behavior of conventional block copolymer and tapered block copolymer systems for lithium battery membrane applications. We find that we can tune poly(styrene- b-ethylene oxide) diblock copolymer nanostructures by adjusting the lithium counterion and lithium salt concentration, as well as the taper volume fraction and composition. Additionally, we can estimate the effective interaction parameters (χeff) for the salt-doped copolymers to determine the overall influence of tapering on the energetics of copolymer assembly. These tapered materials allow us to design nanostructured membrane systems with increased conductivity and improved mechanical properties in ion transport devices. We gratefully acknowledge AFOSR-PECASE (FA9550-09-1-0706) and NSF-CAREER (DMR-0645586) for financial support.

  18. Effects of Blockiness on the phase behavior of random copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vanderwoude, Gordon; Shi, An-Chang

    Theoretical study of random block copolymers remains a challenging topic due in part to the sheer enormity of their phase space. In this study we use the self-consistent field theory to investigate the phase behaviour of linear (AB)n-type and (AB)n-C-type multiblock copolymers with randomly distributed A and B blocks. In particular, we examine the effect of ``blockiness'' of the random copolymers on the formation of ordered phases. The blockiness can be quantified by the average length of individual A or B blocks, which can be taken as a measure of the heterogeneity of the random copolymers. We observed that the critical value of the χ parameter, at which the order-disorder transition occurs, decreases with increasing blockiness in the (AB)n copolymers. We also observed that the phase behaviour of the (AB)n-C copolymers depends strongly on the blockiness of the random chain. In particular, the blockiness governs whether or not the A/B blocks can phase separate within the A/B domains, thus dictating whether the (AB)n-C behaves as A/B-C diblock copolymers or as ABC terpolymers. The theoretical phase diagrams will be compared with available experiments.

  19. Manipulating Ordering Transitions in Interfacially Modified Block Copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    Singh, N.; Tureau, M; Epps, T

    2009-01-01

    We report a synthetic strategy that allows us to manipulate the interfacial region between blocks and control ordering transitions in poly(isoprene-b-styrene) [P(I-S)] block copolymers. This interfacial modification is accomplished by combining a semi-batch feed with anionic polymerization techniques. Using this approach, we are able to control the segmental composition and molecular interactions in our phase-separated block copolymers, independent of molecular weight and block constituents. A library of copolymers is prepared with various interfacial modifications to examine the effect of interfacial composition on copolymer self-assembly. The morphological characteristics of the self-assembled structures are investigated using small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA). Normal and inverse tapered block copolymers, containing approximately 15-35 vol% tapered material, show a measurable decrease in the order-disorder transition temperature (TODT) relative to the corresponding non-tapered diblock copolymers, with the inverse tapered materials showing the greatest deviation in TODT. Additionally, TODT was inversely related to the volume fraction of the tapered region in both normal and inverse tapered copolymer materials.

  20. Role of hydrophilicity and length of diblock arms for determining star polymer physical properties.

    PubMed

    Felberg, Lisa E; Brookes, David H; Head-Gordon, Teresa; Rice, Julia E; Swope, William C

    2015-01-22

    We present a molecular simulation study of star polymers consisting of 16 diblock copolymer arms bound to a small adamantane core by varying both arm length and the outer hydrophilic block when attached to the same hydrophobic block of poly-δ-valerolactone. Here we consider two biocompatible star polymers in which the hydrophilic block is composed of polyethylene glycol (PEG) or polymethyloxazoline (POXA) in addition to a polycarbonate-based polymer with a pendant hydrophilic group (PC1). We find that the different hydrophilic blocks of the star polymers show qualitatively different trends in their interactions with aqueous solvent, orientational time correlation functions, and orientational correlation between pairs of monomers of their polymeric arms in solution, in which we find that the PEG polymers are more thermosensitive compared with the POXA and PC1 star polymers over the physiological temperature range we have investigated. PMID:25254622

  1. Molecular transfer printing using block copolymers.

    PubMed

    Ji, Shengxiang; Liu, Chi-Chun; Liu, Guoliang; Nealey, Paul F

    2010-02-23

    Soft lithographic techniques augment or enhance the capabilities of traditional patterning processes and expand the diversity of materials that can be patterned. Realization of robust parallel techniques for creating chemical patterns at the nanoscale has been challenging. Here we present a method for creating and replicating chemical patterns that uses functionalized homopolymer inks that are preferentially segregated into the nanodomains of phase-separated diblock copolymer films. The inks are transferred by reaction to substrates that are brought into contact with block copolymer films, creating chemical patterns on the substrate that mirror the domain structure present at the film surface with high fidelity and resolution. In addition to printing from self-assembled domain structures, we can also direct the assembly of the block copolymer films from which transfer occurs using lithographically defined masters so as to replicate and transfer patterns of inks with controlled and well-defined geometries. The transferred patterns may be at higher resolution than the lithographically defined master, and the process can be repeated to create multiple copies of identical replicas. Transfer of one ink from one block of the copolymer is also possible, and filling the interspatial regions of the pattern with a second ink provides a pathway toward creating patterns with diverse chemical functionalities. PMID:20041629

  2. Stimulated release of photosensitizers from graft and diblock micelles for photodynamic therapy.

    PubMed

    Tsai, Hsieh-Chih; Tsai, Cheng-Hung; Lin, Shuian-Yin; Jhang, Chang-Rong; Chiang, Yung-Sheng; Hsiue, Ging-Ho

    2012-02-01

    To understand the effect of photosensitizer (PS) release from graft copolymer based micelles in photodynamic therapy (PDT), the two pH-sensitive and non-pH-sensitive graft copolymers, (poly(N-vinyly caprolactam)-g-poly(D,L-lactide) and poly(N-vinyly caprolactam-co-N-vinyl imidazole)-g-poly(D,L-lactide)), were synthesized and utilized for the encapsulation of protoporphyrin IX (PPIX) for in vitro and in vivo PDT studies. Photochemical internalization (PCI) was utilized to study the localization of pH- and non-pH-sensitive micelles uptake in the lysosome. After non-toxic light treatment, PPIX was found in the nucleus with pH-sensitive micelles, while PPIX was still localized in the lysosomal organism with the non-pH-sensitive micelles, as observed by confocal microscopy. Because the formation of singlet oxygen was observed for the block and graft micelles, dramatic differences in the cell viability could be ascribed to the damage occurring at the region where the PPIX was located. An in vivo study revealed that PPIX-loaded graft and diblock micelles presented prolonged blood circulation and enhanced tumor targeting ability. The PPIX released from g-CIM micelles on tumor site was further proved by ex vivo confocal image. In addition, non-pH-sensitive micelle-treated mice showed a better repression of tumor growth than PPIX-treated mice, which was likely due to the larger amount of PS localized in the tumor region still exhibiting therapeutic effects. Finally, effective PDT-induced inhibition of tumor growth was found in pH-sensitive micelle-treated mice. This work provides insight into PS-loaded graft and diblock micelles for the PDT of tumors. PMID:22142770

  3. Fabrication of Complex Three-Dimensional Nanostructures from Self-Assembling Block Copolymer Materials on Patterned Surfaces: A computational Study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ye, Xianggui; Edwards, Brian J.; Khomami, Bamin

    2010-03-01

    Chemically patterned substrates can direct the assembly of adsorbed layers or thin films of block copolymers. Here, we consider the self-assembly of a lamella-forming diblock copolymer on periodically stripe-patterned substrates. The morphology of the block copolymer follows the pattern at the substrate; however, with an increasing degree of mismatch between the width of the stripe-pattern and the periodic spacing of bulk block copolymer, novel morphologies have been found. Therefore, it is possible to adjust the morphologies in thin bock copolymer films by adjusting the mismatch between the width of the stripe-pattern and the periodic spacing of the bulk block copolymer. These results demonstrate a promising strategy for fabrication of complex interfacial nanostructures from chemically patterned templates.

  4. Anti-Bioadhesive Coating Based on Easy to Make Pseudozwitterionic RAFT Block Copolymers for Blood-Contacting Applications.

    PubMed

    Nehache, Sabrina; Yeh, Chin-Cheng; Semsarilar, Mona; Deratani, André; Chang, Yung; Quemener, Damien

    2016-01-01

    Amphiphilic diblock copolymer containing randomly distributed positive and negative charged monomers are synthesized using RAFT polymerization technique to be used as anti-bioadhesion coatings for hydrophobic surfaces. Quaternized 2-(dimethylamino) ethyl methacrylate and potassium 3-sulfopropyl methacrylate (P[qDMAEMA-co-KSPMA]) are randomly polymerized to yield an anti-bioadhesion block which is, in one pot, copolymerized with styrene as an anchoring block. This copolymer has demonstrated high anti-bioadhesion properties to avoid the blood clotting in medical devices through a simple and facile approach to preparation of pseudozwitterionic copolymers. PMID:26222768

  5. Mixing thermodynamics of block-random copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beckingham, Bryan Scott

    Random copolymerization of A and B monomers represents a versatile method to tune interaction strengths between polymers, as ArB random copolymers will exhibit a smaller effective Flory interaction parameter chi; (or interaction energy density X) upon mixing with A or B homopolymers than upon mixing A and B homopolymers with each other, and the ArB composition can be tuned continuously. Thus, the incorporation of a random copolymer block into the classical block copolymer architecture to yield "block-random" copolymers introduces an additional tuning mechanism for the control of structure-property relationships, as the interblock interactions and physical properties can be tuned continuously through the random block's composition. However, typical living or controlled polymerizations produce compositional gradients along the "random" block, which can in turn influence the phase behavior. This dissertation demonstrates a method by which narrow-distribution copolymers of styrene and isoprene of any desired composition, with no measurable down-chain gradient, are synthesized. This synthetic method is then utilized to incorporate random copolymers of styrene and isoprene as blocks into block-random copolymers in order to examine the resulting interblock mixing thermodynamics. A series of well-defined near-symmetric block and block-random copolymers (S-I, Bd-S, I-SrI, S-SrI and Bd-S rI diblocks, where S is polystyrene, I is polyisoprene and Bd is polybutadiene), with varying molecular weight and random-block composition are synthesized and the mixing thermodynamics---via comparison of their interaction energy densities, X---of their hydrogenated derivatives is examined through measurement of the order-disorder transition (ODT) temperature. Hydrogenated derivatives of I-SrI and S-SrI block-random copolymers, both wherein the styrene aromaticity is retained and derivatives wherein the styrene units are saturated to vinylcyclohexane (VCH), are found to hew closely to the

  6. Tetragonal Ordering in Block Copolymer-Homopolymer Blend Films Laterally Confined in a Square Well

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hur, Su-Mi; García-Cervera, Carlos; Kramer, Ed; Fredrickson, Glenn

    2009-03-01

    Self-consistent field theory (SCFT) simulations are presented for a melt blend of AB diblock copolymers and A homopolymers in a thin film confined to a square well. The work aims to guide self-assembly towards tetragonal ordering, which is a pattern of technological interest in block copolymer lithography. By using suitable A homopolymer additives, we have succeeded in achieving square lattices of cylinders not observed in the confined or bulk pure diblock system. A phase diagram is presented that shows the region of stability of the tetragonal phase as a function of chain length and volume fraction of the homopolymer additive, in addition to several other interesting phases that result from a competition between surface and bulk contributions to the free energy. Results are also presented on the effect of line edge roughness in the square confinement well on the achievement of robust and defect free tetragonal order.

  7. Synthesis of functionalized poly({alpha}-olefins) via Ziegler-Natta catalysis: Homo- and copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    Mogstad, A.L.; Kesti, M.R.; Coates, G.W.; Waymouth, R.M.

    1993-12-31

    Poly(methylene-1,3-cyclopentane-{beta}-caprolactone) (P(MCP-{beta}-CL) diblock copolymers are prepared by reacting hydroxy-terminated PMCP with triethylaluminum to produce a macroinitiator which is active for the ring-opening polymerization of {epsilon}-caprolactone (ECL). {sup 1}H NMR analysis of purified P(MCP)-{beta}-CL) shows a 1:1 ratio for the signals at 3.97 ppm due to the methylene at the PMCP-ester linkage and 3.63 due to the methylene at the PCL chain end; this is strong evidence for the formation of a diblock copolymer. In addition, {alpha}-olefins containing silylether, diisopropylamino, diphenylphosphino and carbazole functional groups have been polymerized in the presence of cationic, group 4 metallocene Ziegler-Natta catalysts. The resulting polymines, polyalcohols, polycarbazoles and polyphosphines serve as precursors to novel polyelectrolytes and organometallic polymers.

  8. Formation of micelles in homopolymer-copolymer mixtures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Müller, Marcus; Cavallo, Anna; Binder, Kurt

    2007-03-01

    Using Monte Carlo (MC) simulations of the bond fluctuation model and self-consistent field (SCF) calculations, we study the formation of micelles in a mixture of homopolymers and asymmetric AB-diblock copolymers with composition, fA=1/8. We work in the semi--grandcanonical ensemble, i.e., we fix the monomer density and incompatibility, χN˜100, and control the composition of the mixture via the exchange chemical potential, δμ between the copolymer and homopolymer solvent. The MC simulation comprises moves that allow homopolymers to mutate into AB-diblock copolymers and vice versa. These moves are very efficient in equilibrating the configurations. We accurately locate the critical micelle concentration, study the micellar size distribution and characterize the shape of the micelles by the tensor of gyration and radial density profiles. The simulation results are quantitatively compared to predictions of the SCF theory in the grandcanonical ensemble without adjustable parameter. Only in the limit of high molecular weight the simulation results gradually approach the theoretical predictions. The structure and phase behavior of mixed micelles is investigated by SCF calculations.

  9. Characterization of copolymer latexes by capillary electrophoresis.

    PubMed

    Anik, Nadia; Airiau, Marc; Labeau, Marie-Pierre; Bzducha, Wojciech; Cottet, Hervé

    2010-02-01

    Latexes are widely used for industrial applications, including decorative paints, binders for the papermaking industry, and drilling fluids for oil-field applications. In this work, the interest of capillary zone electrophoresis (CE) for the characterization of hydrophobic block copolymer latexes obtained by the conventional emulsion polymerization technique consisting of a core of polystyrene (PS) surrounded by a layer of poly(ethyl acrylate) (PEA) has been investigated. The PEA part of the copolymer can be partially hydrolyzed in poly(acrylic acid) (PAA) leading to PS-PEA-AA water-soluble amphiphilic copolymer having high viscosifying properties. The main purpose of this work was to evaluate the potential of CE for the characterization of the latexes at the different stages of the synthesis (PS core, PS-PEA diblock latex, and hydrolyzed PS-PEA-AA gel). The main analytical issues were to state (i) if there was free PS or PEA homopolymer latexes in the PS-PEA latex sample and (ii) if there was free PS, PEA, PS-PEA latexes, or free PAA chains in the PS-PEA-AA gel. Within this scope, this work describes the optimization of the selectivity of the separation between the different species (PS, PEA particles in the not hydrolyzed diblock latex and PS, PEA, PS-PEA particles as well as the polymer PAA chains in the PS-PEA-AA diblock gel sample obtained by latter latex hydrolysis). For that purpose, several experimental parameters were investigated such as pH and ionic strength of the background electrolyte (BGE) or the concentration of neutral surfactant added in the BGE. A challenging issue was to overcome the high viscosity of the PS-PEA-AA gel. This was resolved by the addition of 10 mM neutral surfactant in the gel sample and in the BGE. Finally, it is demonstrated that, within the detection limits, CE is a suitable analytical tool for controlling and monitoring the syntheses of these latexes and for intrinsically characterizing the distribution in charge density of

  10. Imidazolium-based Block Copolymers as Solid-State Separators for Alkaline Fuel Cells and Lithium Ion Batteries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nykaza, Jacob Richard

    In this study, polymerized ionic liquid (PIL) diblock copolymers were explored as solid-state polymer separators as an anion exchange membrane (AEM) for alkaline fuel cells AFCs and as a solid polymer electrolyte (SPE) for lithium-ion batteries. Polymerized ionic liquid (PIL) block copolymers are a distinct set of block copolymers that combine the properties of both ionic liquids (e.g., high conductivity, high electrochemical stability) and block copolymers (e.g., self-assembly into various nanostructures), which provides the opportunity to design highly conductive robust solid-state electrolytes that can be tuned for various applications including AFCs and lithium-ion batteries via simple anion exchange. A series of bromide conducting PIL diblock copolymers with an undecyl alkyl side chain between the polymer backbone and the imidazolium moiety were first synthesized at various compositions comprising of a PIL component and a non-ionic component. Synthesis was achieved by post-functionalization from its non-ionic precursor PIL diblock copolymer, which was synthesized via the reverse addition fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) technique. This PIL diblock copolymer with long alkyl side chains resulted in flexible, transparent films with high mechanical strength and high bromide ion conductivity. The conductivity of the PIL diblock copolymer was three times higher than its analogous PIL homopolymer and an order of magnitude higher than a similar PIL diblock copolymer with shorter alkyl side chain length, which was due to the microphase separated morphology, more specifically, water/ion clusters within the PIL microdomains in the hydrated state. Due to the high conductivity and mechanical robustness of this novel PIL block copolymer, its application as both the ionomer and AEM in an AFC was investigated via anion exchange to hydroxide (OH-), where a maximum power density of 29.3 mW cm-1 (60 °C with H2/O2 at 25 psig (172 kPa) backpressure) was achieved. Rotating disk

  11. Self-assembly of block copolymers grafted onto a flat substrate: Recent progress in theory and simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zheng, Wang; Bao-Hui, Li

    2016-01-01

    Block copolymers are a class of soft matter that self-assemble to form ordered morphologies on the scale of nanometers, making them ideal materials for various applications. These applications directly depend on the shape and size of the self-assembled morphologies, and hence, a high degree of control over the self-assembly is desired. Grafting block copolymer chains onto a substrate to form copolymer brushes is a versatile method to fabricate functional surfaces. Such surfaces demonstrate a response to their environment, i.e., they change their surface topography in response to different external conditions. Furthermore, such surfaces may possess nanoscale patterns, which are important for some applications; however, such patterns may not form with spun-cast films under the same condition. In this review, we summarize the recent progress of the self-assembly of block copolymers grafted onto a flat substrate. We mainly concentrate on the self-assembled morphologies of end-grafted AB diblock copolymers, junction point-grafted AB diblock copolymers (i.e., Y-shaped brushes), and end-grafted ABA triblock copolymers. Special emphasis is placed on theoretical and simulation progress. Project supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant Nos. 20990234, 20925414, and 91227121), the Program for Changjiang Scholars and Innovative Research Team in University, China (Grant No. IRT1257), the Programme of Introducing Talents of Discipline to Universities, China, and by the Tianhe No. 1, China.

  12. Development of new generation of copolymers via reactive extrusion in a twin screw extruder and application in various PVC blends

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, In

    Polymerization in twin screw extruders has largely involved homopolymers. Here we generalize this and polymerize a range of copolymers and terpolymers including epsilon-caprolactam(CA), o-lauryl lactam(LA), epsilon-caprolactone(CL), and gamma-butyrolactone(GBL) in a modular intermeshing co-rotating twin screw extruder. We considered different types of copolymer structures (di-block, tri-block, and random-block) and different backbones of copolymer(lactams-lactones) as well as the variables of temperature profile, screw speed, monomer feed rate, the ratio of monomer to initiator, and feeding order of co-monomers on reactive extrusion of polyamides-polylactones based (co)polymers. Specially designed block copolymers have played a role as compatibilizing agents in the system of immiscible polymer blends. We apply the di-block copolymer(P(LA-b-CL)) and random block copolymer (P(LA/CA-b-CL)) produced by reactive extrusion as a compatibilizing agent in immiscible polymer blend systems: (i) poly(vinyl chloride) (PVC)/polyamide 12 (PA12), (ii) PVC/polypropylene(PP), and (iii) PVC/Ethylene-propylene-non-conjugated diene elastomer(EPDM).

  13. Structural development and mechanical response of thermoreversible triblock copolymer gels and gel/nanotube composites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schoch, Andrew B.

    Intensive research on block copolymers for their unique phase behavior and natural application as surfactants has gone on for a number of years now. The introduction of these materials into selective solvents has expanded the range of their application to diverse areas, from biological scaffolds and drug delivery to ceramics processing and nanocomposites. This dissertation focuses on a system of AB diblock copolymers and ABA triblock copolymers in the same B selective solvent. In fact, the solvent is only selective for the B blocks at low temperatures. At high temperatures both blocks are readily soluble and the polymers are quite mobile in solution, though upon cooling the copolymers form spherical micelles with the A blocks in the micelle core and B blocks in the micelle corona. The main difference between the diblock and triblock copolymer solutions is that in the triblock copolymer solutions the B midblocks have the ability to form bridges between micelles, ultimately forming a connected network of micelles. The formation of this connected network or gel occurs very quickly over a narrow temperature range and is reversible. It transforms the solution at elevated temperatures from a concentrated polymer solution that exhibits very little elasticity to a soft gel which is mostly elastic in its mechanical response. The fast transition, low elasticity at elevated temperatures, and surfactant nature of the block copolymers all make this a model system for the study of carbon nanotubes as fillers in polymers. Carbon nanotubes have been shown to exhibit unique mechanical, electrical, thermal, and optical properties which make them a potentially interesting filler material in polymer composites. The mechanical properties of both these nanocomposites and the nascent copolymer solutions have been studied extensively in this text. This research was motivated by a desire to understand structural development on a fundamental level for both the networks of block copolymers

  14. Rectification mechanism in diblock oligomer molecular diodes.

    PubMed

    Oleynik, I I; Kozhushner, M A; Posvyanskii, V S; Yu, L

    2006-03-10

    We investigated a mechanism of rectification in diblock oligomer diode molecules that have recently been synthesized and showed a pronounced asymmetry in the measured I-V spectrum. The observed rectification effect is due to the resonant nature of electron transfer in the system and the localization properties of bound state wave functions of resonant states of the tunneling electron interacting with an asymmetric molecule in an electric field. The asymmetry of the tunneling wave function is enhanced or weakened depending on the polarity of the applied bias. The conceptually new theoretical approach, the Green's function theory of sub-barrier scattering, is able to provide a physically transparent explanation of this rectification effect based on the concept of the bound state spectrum of a tunneling electron. The theory predicts the characteristic features of the I-V spectrum in qualitative agreement with experiment. PMID:16606295

  15. Prediction of the solubility of cucurbitacin drugs in self-associating poly(ethylene oxide)-b-poly(alpha-benzyl carboxylate epsilon-caprolactone) block copolymer with different tacticities using molecular dynamics simulation.

    PubMed

    Patel, Sarthak K; Lavasanifar, Afsaneh; Choi, Phillip

    2010-01-01

    Molecular dynamics (MD) simulation was used to investigate the solubility of two hydrophobic drugs Cucurbitacin B (CuB) and Cucurbitacin I (CuI) in poly(ethylene oxide)-b-poly(alpha-benzyl carboxylate epsilon-caprolactone) (PEO-b-PBCL) block copolymers with different tacticities. In particular, di-block copolymer with three different tacticities viz. PEO-b-iPBCL, PEO-b-sPBCL, and PEO-b-aPBCL were used. The solubility was quantified by calculating the corresponding Flory-Huggins interaction parameters (chi) using random binary mixture models with 10wt% of drug. The tacticity of the di-block copolymer was found to influence significantly the solubility of two drugs in it. In particular, based on MD simulation results, only PEO-b-sPBCL exhibited solubility while the other two did not. Given the fact that the drugs were shown to be soluble in PEO-b-PBCL experimentally, it is predicted that the tacticity of the di-block copolymer synthesized in experiment is syndiotactic. This predication matches well with the dominant ring opening polymerization of cyclic lactones to syndiotactic polymers by stannous octoate as catalyst used to prepare PEO-b-PBCL block copolymers in our previous experiments. The simulation results showed that the solubility of the drugs in PEO-b-sPBCL is attributed to the favorable intra-molecular interaction of the di-block copolymer and favorable intermolecular interaction between the di-block copolymer and the drugs. Radial distribution function analysis provides useful insights into the nature and type of the intermolecular interactions. PMID:19796808

  16. Sulfonated Polymerized Ionic Liquid Block Copolymers.

    PubMed

    Meek, Kelly M; Elabd, Yossef A

    2016-07-01

    The successful synthesis of a new diblock copolymer, referred to as sulfonated polymerized ionic liquid (PIL) block copolymer, poly(SS-Li-b-AEBIm-TFSI), is reported, which contains both sulfonated blocks (sulfonated styrene: SS) and PIL blocks (1-[(2-acryloyloxy)ethyl]-3-butylimidazolium: AEBIm) with both mobile cations (lithium: Li(+) ) and mobile anions (bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)imide: TFSI(-) ). Synthesis consists of polymerization via reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer, followed by post-functionalization reactions to covalently attach the imidazolium cations and sulfonic acid anions to their respective blocks, followed by ion exchange metathesis resulting in mobile Li(+) cations and mobile TFSI(-) anions. Solid-state films containing 1 m Li-TFSI salt dissolved in ionic liquid result in an ion conductivity of >1.5 mS cm(-1) at 70 °C, where small-angle X-ray scattering data indicate a weakly ordered microphase-separated morphology. These results demonstrate a new ion-conducting block copolymer containing both mobile cations and mobile anions. PMID:27125600

  17. Redox-controlled micellization of organometallic block copolymers.

    PubMed

    Rider, David A; Winnik, Mitchell A; Manners, Ian

    2007-11-21

    Polystyrene-block-polyferrocenylsilane (PS-b-PFS) diblock copolymers were stoichiometrically oxidized in solution using salts of the one-electron oxidant tris(4-bromophenyl)ammoniumyl. Due to a redox-induced polarity change for the PFS block, self-assembly into well-defined spherical micelles occurs. The micelles are composed of a core of partially oxidized PFS segments and a corona of PS. When the micellar solutions were treated with the reducing agent decamethylcobaltocene, the spherical micelles disassemble and regenerate unassociated and pristine PS-b-PFS free chains. PMID:17971963

  18. Hierarchical assembly of block copolymer micelles into reversible networks: MC simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Zilu; Dormidontova, Elena

    2015-03-01

    The rapid development of nanoscience has considerably expanded the range of building blocks for complex self-assembled nanostructure formation, which show great potential for numerous advanced applications. We apply Monte Carlo simulations to gain understanding of molecular mechanism of self-assembly of nanostructures formed by diblock copolymer micelles interconnected by means of metal-ligand complexation. These systems exhibit interesting chemical and mechanical stimuli-responsive behavior and possess two levels of self-assembly: 1) self-assembly of diblock copolymers into micelles and 2) reversible inter-micelle bridging by coordination bonding between metal ions and ligands attached to the corona of nanoparticles, which is responsible for the network viscoelastic properties. Using MC simulations we investigate the effect of metal-ligand complexation on diblock-copolymer micelle formation and vice versa. We analyze the extent of intra- and inter-micelle loops and bridges formed by metal-ligand complexation in relation to the degree of crosslinking and elastic properties of the network. The effect of polymer concentration, hydrophilic block length, metal to oligomer ratio and type of complexation (2:1 or 3:1) on equilibrium properties of reversible networks will be discussed.

  19. Are block copolymer worms more effective Pickering emulsifiers than block copolymer spheres?

    PubMed

    Thompson, K L; Mable, C J; Cockram, A; Warren, N J; Cunningham, V J; Jones, E R; Verber, R; Armes, S P

    2014-11-21

    RAFT-mediated polymerisation-induced self-assembly (PISA) is used to prepare six types of amphiphilic block copolymer nanoparticles which were subsequently evaluated as putative Pickering emulsifiers for the stabilisation of n-dodecane-in-water emulsions. It was found that linear poly(glycerol monomethacrylate)-poly(2-hydroxypropyl methacrylate) (PGMA-PHPMA) diblock copolymer spheres and worms do not survive the high shear homogenisation conditions used for emulsification. Stable emulsions are obtained, but the copolymer acts as a polymeric surfactant; individual chains rather than particles are adsorbed at the oil-water interface. Particle dissociation during emulsification is attributed to the weakly hydrophobic character of the PHPMA block. Covalent stabilisation of these copolymer spheres or worms can be readily achieved by addition of ethylene glycol dimethacrylate (EGDMA) during the PISA synthesis. TEM studies confirm that the resulting cross-linked spherical or worm-like nanoparticles survive emulsification and produce genuine Pickering emulsions. Alternatively, stabilisation can be achieved by either replacing or supplementing the PHPMA block with the more hydrophobic poly(benzyl methacrylate) (PBzMA). The resulting linear spheres or worms also survive emulsification and produce stable n-dodecane-in-water Pickering emulsions. The intrinsic advantages of anisotropic worms over isotropic spheres for the preparation of Pickering emulsions are highlighted. The former particles are more strongly adsorbed at similar efficiencies compared to spheres and also enable smaller oil droplets to be produced for a given copolymer concentration. The scalable nature of PISA formulations augurs well for potential applications of anisotropic block copolymer nanoparticles as Pickering emulsifiers. PMID:25254485

  20. Surface Engineering of Styrene/PEGylated-Fluoroalkyl Styrene Block Copolymer Thin Films

    SciTech Connect

    Martinelle, E.; Menghetti, S; Galli, G; Glisenti, A; Krishnan, S; Paik, M; Ober, C; Smilgies, D; Fischer, D

    2009-01-01

    A series of diblock copolymers prepared from styrenic monomers was synthesized using atom transfer radical polymerization. One block was derived from styrene, whereas the second block was prepared from a styrene modified with an amphiphilic PEGylated-fluoroalkyl side chain. The surface properties of the resulting polymer films were carefully characterized using dynamic contact angle, XPS, and NEXAFS measurements. The polymer morphology was investigated using atomic force microscope and GISAXS studies. The block copolymers possess surfaces dominated by the fluorinated unit in the dry state and a distinct phase separated microstructure in the thin film. The microstructure of these polymers is strongly influenced by the thin film structure in which it is investigated.

  1. Large-area, ordered hexagonal arrays of nanoscale holes or dots from block copolymer templates

    SciTech Connect

    Vedrine, Josee; Hong, Young-Rae; Marencic, Andrew P.; Register, Richard A.; Adamson, Douglas H.; Chaikin, Paul M.

    2007-10-01

    Hexagonal arrays of nanoscale holes or metal dots (25 nm in diameter and 39 nm in period), with orientational order extending over the entire square-centimeter array area, were fabricated on unpatterned silicon wafer substrates using a shear-aligned sphere-forming diblock copolymer template. Since two or more layers of spherical nanodomains are required to achieve alignment in the block copolymer film, but pattern transfer requires a single layer, a multistep etching process was developed, whereby the top layer of a shear-aligned bilayer was evenly removed, leaving the ordered bottom layer as the fabrication template for hole and dot arrays free from grain boundaries.

  2. Controlled self-assembly of amphiphilic diblock copolypeptides

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pakstis, Lisa M.

    Amphiphilic diblock copolypeptides that are 200 amino acids in length with a hydrophilic lysine (K) block and a hydrophobic leucine (L) block assemble into stiff, porous hydrogels at low volume fractions of polymer (<0.5 wt%) and neutral pH. When assembled quickly in pure water, the polypeptides form rigid hydrogels with bulk mechanical properties that are tunable based on molecular design, i.e. chain length, choice of amino acid, and hydrophilic to hydrophobic block ratio, and solution conditions such as salt concentration. Hydrogels assemble via the formation of membranes on the nanoscale due to hydrophobic interactions that interconnect to create an innately porous network on both the nano- and microscale. The porous morphology, high modulus, and peptidic foundation of these hydrogels make them intriguing candidates for biomaterials applications. Biocompatibility studies of these peptide-based materials revealed that anionic polypeptide hydrogels are not cytotoxic to mammalian cells. In an effort to understand the overall assembly mechanism, polypeptides were assembled from miscible organic/water mixtures to slow the kinetics of assembly. Prior suspension of the block copolypeptides in organic cosolvent enabled greater copolypeptide chain mobility that, after water addition and subsequent removal of the organic via evaporation, provides for a more regular packing of the copolypeptide molecules and, more importantly, for the controllability of the assembled morphology. At the fastest organic evaporation rate (˜6 hours), the copolypeptides assembled into weak hydrogels with a homogeneous microstructure. Slowing the evaporation rate to ˜24 hours, and hence the kinetics of assembly, produced regular, non-interconnected fibrils. Longer evaporation times, ˜2 days, led to the formation of hexagonal platelets. Interestingly, copolypeptides with a racemic copolymer leucine block did not assemble into any regular nanostructures, indicating that the secondary structure

  3. Patterning square and rectangular arrays using shear-aligned block copolymer thin films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, So Youn; Davis, Raleigh L.; Register, Richard A.; Gwyther, Jessica; Nunns, Adam; Manners, Ian; Chaikin, Paul M.

    2014-03-01

    Microphase separation of block copolymers in thin films can generate periodic structures: hexagonally packed arrays of dots from spherical or cylindrical phase block copolymers, or periodic stripes from cylindrical or lamellar phase block copolymers. Square or rectangular patterns, however, do not naturally form by spontaneous self-assembly of a simple diblock copolymer, and are a challenge to create. We present a simple way to create nano-square/rectangular arrays by building up a double-layer film of a cylinder-forming diblock, where each layer is sequentially deposited, shear-aligned independently, and cross-linked. Any block copolymer with at least one crosslinkable block can in principle be employed; in this study we use cylinder-forming polystyrene-b-poly(ferrocenylisopropylmethylsilane) and polystyrene-b-poly(hexylmethacrylate). The pitch of the array is tunable by varying polymer molecular weight. Oxygen reactive ion etching is used to reveal the grid structures, and these grids can in turn form nano-wells in the silicon substrate when the cylinder-forming block is very etch-resistant under the conditions used for silicon etching. Additionally, metal dots ordered in square arrays can be created using these grids as templates, via metal evaporation and lift-off.

  4. Effect of Macromolecular Architecture on the Morphology of Polystyrene Polyisoprene Block Copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    Kumar, Rajeev; Goswami, Monojoy; Mays, Jimmy; Sides, Scott; Sumpter, Bobby G; Dadmun, Mark D; Dyer, Caleb W; Driva, Paraskevi; Chen, Jihua

    2013-01-01

    The impact of block connectivity on the morphologies of four block copolymers of varying architecture containing polystyrene (PS) and polyisoprene (PI) has been studied. The volume fraction of PS and molecular weight are held constant while varying the architecture from a linear PS-PI diblock copolymer to three different miktoarm star architectures: PS2PI, PSPI2, and PS2PI2. Morphologies of the PS2PI and PSPI2 miktoarm stars are different from those observed for the linear copolymer and dependent on the connectivity of the copolymer blocks. The change in morphology with connectivity indicates that combining two chains at a junction point leads to chain crowding, where subsequent excluded volume effects drive the change in morphology for each sample. The PS2PI2 miktoarm star exhibits the same morphology as the linear diblock but with a reduction in the size of the domains. The extent of the decrease in domain size indicates that chain stretching impacts the formation of this morphology. Experimentally observed morphologies for different chain architectures are generally consistent with three-dimensional self-consistent field theory simulations, taking into account conformational asymmetry and experimental uncertainty in the copolymer composition. Furthermore, these results generally agree with analytical theory predictions that account for architectural and conformational asymmetry.

  5. Aqueous dispersion polymerization: a new paradigm for in situ block copolymer self-assembly in concentrated solution.

    PubMed

    Sugihara, Shinji; Blanazs, Adam; Armes, Steven P; Ryan, Anthony J; Lewis, Andrew L

    2011-10-01

    Reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer polymerization has been utilized to polymerize 2-hydroxypropyl methacrylate (HPMA) using a water-soluble macromolecular chain transfer agent based on poly(2-(methacryloyloxy)ethylphosphorylcholine) (PMPC). A detailed phase diagram has been elucidated for this aqueous dispersion polymerization formulation that reliably predicts the precise block compositions associated with well-defined particle morphologies (i.e., pure phases). Unlike the ad hoc approaches described in the literature, this strategy enables the facile, efficient, and reproducible preparation of diblock copolymer spheres, worms, or vesicles directly in concentrated aqueous solution. Chain extension of the highly hydrated zwitterionic PMPC block with HPMA in water at 70 °C produces a hydrophobic poly(2-hydroxypropyl methacrylate) (PHPMA) block, which drives in situ self-assembly to form well-defined diblock copolymer spheres, worms, or vesicles. The final particle morphology obtained at full monomer conversion is dictated by (i) the target degree of polymerization of the PHPMA block and (ii) the total solids concentration at which the HPMA polymerization is conducted. Moreover, if the targeted diblock copolymer composition corresponds to vesicle phase space at full monomer conversion, the in situ particle morphology evolves from spheres to worms to vesicles during the in situ polymerization of HPMA. In the case of PMPC(25)-PHPMA(400) particles, this systematic approach allows the direct, reproducible, and highly efficient preparation of either block copolymer vesicles at up to 25% solids or well-defined worms at 16-25% solids in aqueous solution. PMID:21854065

  6. Directed Assembly of Supramolecular Copolymers in Thin Films: Thermodynamic and Kinetic Advantages

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Daoulas, Kostas Ch.; Cavallo, Anna; Shenhar, Roy; Müller, Marcus

    2010-09-01

    Using computer simulation of a coarse-grained model for supramolecular polymers, we investigate the potential of quasiblock copolymers (QBCPs) assembled on chemically patterned substrates for creating device-oriented nanostructures. QBCPs are comprised of AB diblock copolymers and supramolecular B segments that can reversibly bond to any available B terminus, on either the copolymers or the B oligomers, creating a polydisperse blend of B homopolymers, and AB and ABA copolymers. We demonstrate the defect-free replication of patterns with perpendicularly crossing, A-preferential lines, where the same QBCP can simultaneously replicate patterns differing by up to 50% in their length scales. We demonstrate how the pattern affects the distribution of molecular architectures and the key role of supramolecular associations for replicating patterns with different length scales.

  7. π-Conjugated Copolymers of Thiophene: Effect of Chain Architecture on the Physical and Optoelectronic Properties for Photovoltaic Applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Amonoo, Jojo; Glynos, Emmanouil; Chen, Chelsea; Li, Anton; Locke, Jonas; McNeil, Anne; Green, Peter

    2012-02-01

    We found that polymer chain architecture strongly influences phase separation capabilities of the donor-acceptor blend in bulk heterojunction organic photovoltaic devices. Ni-catalyzed controlled polymerization was utilized to access new conjugated copolymers of 3-hexylthiophene and 3-(hexyloxy)methylthiophene, two donor polymers. Monomer sequence was controlled along the copolymer chain by the rate of addition of the comonomers, to achieve diblock, random and gradient copolymer chain architectures. This allowed us to study the effect of copolymer sequence of polythiophene based copolymer/[6,6]-phenyl-C61-butyric acid methyl ester (PCBM) blend on the structure, nanoscale morphology and local charge transport properties using conductive and photoconductive atomic force microscopy. The gradient configuration showed the largest phase separation behavior with PCBM.

  8. Superlattice Formation in Binary Mixtures of Block Copolymer Micelles

    SciTech Connect

    Abbas, Sayeed; Lodge, Timothy P.

    2008-08-26

    Two distinct diblock copolymers, poly(styrene-b-isoprene) (SI) and poly(styrene-b-dimethylsiloxane) (SD), were codissolved at various concentrations in the polystyrene selective solvent diethyl phthalate. Two SI diblocks, with block molar masses of 12000-33000 and 30000-33000, and two SD diblocks, with block molar masses of 19000-6000 and 16000-9000, were employed. The size ratio of the smaller SD micelles (S) to the larger SI micelles (L) varied from approximately 0.5 to 0.6, based on hydrodynamic radii determined by dynamic light scattering on dilute solutions containing only one polymer component. Due to incompatibility between the polyisoprene and polydimethylsiloxane blocks, a binary mixture of distinct SI and SD micelles was formed in each mixed solution, as confirmed by cryogenic transmission electron microscopy. When the total concentration of polymer was increased to 20--30%, the micelles adopted a superlattice structure. Small angle X-ray scattering revealed the lattice to be the full LS{sub 13} superlattice (space group Fm{sub 3}c) in all cases, with unit cell dimensions in excess of 145 nm. A coexistent face-centered cubic phase composed of SD micelles was also observed when the number ratio of S to L micelles was large.

  9. Formation and structural properties of multi-block copolymer vesicles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Rong; Ma, Shiying

    2014-03-01

    Due to the unique structure, vesicles have attracted considerable attention for their potential applications, such as gene and drug delivery, microcapsules, nanoreactors, cell membrane mimetic, synthetic organelles, etc. By using dissipative particle dynamics, we studied the self-assembly of amphiphilic multi-block copolymer. The phase diagram was constructed by varying the interaction parameters and the composition of the block copolymers. The results show that the vesicles are stable in a large region which is different from the diblock copolymer or triblock copolymer. The structural properties of vesicles can be controlled by varying the interaction parameters and the length of the hydrophobic block. The relationship between the hydrophilic and hydrophobic block length vs the aqueous cavity size and vesicle size are revealed. The copolymers with shorter hydrophobic blocks length or the higher hydrophilicity are more likely to form vesicles with larger aqueous cavity size and vesicle size as well as thinner wall thickness. However, the increase in hydrophobic-block length results to form vesicles with smaller aqueous cavity size and larger vesicle size. Acknowledgments. This work has been supported by NNSFC (No. 21074053) and NBRPC (No. 2010CB923303).

  10. Monohydroxylated poly(3-hydroxyoctanoate) oligomers and its functionalized derivatives used as macroinitiators in the synthesis of degradable diblock copolyesters.

    PubMed

    Timbart, Laurianne; Renard, Estelle; Tessier, Martine; Langlois, Valérie

    2007-04-01

    The presence of a hydroxyl group at the end of poly(3-hydroxyoctanoate) oligomers, noted PHO oligomers, is required to prepare diblock copolymers with improved properties by ring-opening polymerization of cyclic monomer as epsilon-caprolactone. Several chemical methods such as basic hydrolysis, acid-catalyzed reaction with APTS, and methanolysis were used to prepare well-defined low molar masses PHO oligomers. The methanolysis reaction was allowed to proceed for 10-60 min to produce PHO oligomers with Mn values ranging from 20,000 to 800 g mol-1 with low polydispersity index. Detailed analysis of the MALDI-TOF mass spectra of the obtained oligomers has revealed the presence of linear structures bearing methyl ester on one side and hydroxyl end group on the other side. The same procedure was applied to poly(3-hydroxyoctanoate-co-3-hydroxyundecenoate), PHOU, a poly(3-hydroxyalkanoate) containing unsaturated units in its side chains. These oligomers were further used to initiate the polymerization of epsilon-caprolactone by varying the PHO (or PHOU) and PCL lengths. By copolymerization with epsilon-caprolactone, the properties of PHO or PHOU have been improved. The crystallinity of the obtained copolymers was modified by controlling the length of the two different blocks. The unsaturations in the side chains of the PHOU block were oxidized in acid carboxylic functions to obtain a novel artificial biopolyester. Moreover, degradation was followed to study the influence of carboxylic groups on the hydrolysis of the copolymers. PMID:17338561

  11. Adsorption of diblock polypeptides on polystyrene latex.

    PubMed

    Jain, Ritesh; Forciniti, Daniel

    2012-10-30

    The adsorption of peptides at solid/liquid interfaces is affected by peptide/surface and peptide/peptide hydrophobic and electrostatic forces. Three diblock copolypeptides and two homopeptides were adsorbed on poly(styrene) nanospheres from water, water/methanol, and water/glycerol mixtures at different pH's to study both of these effects. Peptides with one hydrophilic (glutamic acid or lysine) and one nonpolar block (alanine) or with both hydrophilic blocks with opposite charges (glutamic acid and lysine) were chemically synthesized and used as adsorbates in this study. The amount adsorbed was determined, and dynamic light scattering (DLS) was used to measure the adsorbed layer thickness. It was found that peptide/surface and peptide/peptide electrostatic interactions dominate the adsorption process. Hydrophobic forces also play a role, but secondary to electrostatic forces. Positively charged blocks show high affinity for the surface, whereas negatively charged blocks were excluded from it. Poly(Lys) has the highest affinity by the surface, while (Glu)(14)-b-(Ala)(5) has the lowest. Adsorption of all peptides was inhibited by methanol and promoted by glycerol. The adsorption for (Lys)(5)-b-(Glu)(6) was extremely sensitive to pH, irrespective of cosolvent, whereas the thickness for (Lys)(30)-b-(Ala)(41) was sensitive to pH as well as cosolvent. Aggregation was observed in the presence of the nanosurfaces but not in the bulk peptides under some pH and solvent conditions. PMID:23009064

  12. Time-resolved small-angle x-ray-scattering study of ordering kinetics in diblock styrene-butadiene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Singh, M. A.; Harkless, C. R.; Nagler, S. E.; Shannon, R. F., Jr.; Ghosh, S. S.

    1993-04-01

    A detailed study of the kinetics of phase transformations of the diblock copolymer, styrene-butadiene, is reported. The technique of in situ time-resolved small-angle x-ray scattering with the use of synchrotron radiation has been used to study the first-order phase transitions of microphase separation and microdomain ordering. These transitions occur following a rapid, thermal quench from the homogeneous, disordered state to temperatures below the transition point. The isothermal ordering process is discussed in the context of classical theories of nucleation and growth. Anomalous temporal oscillations in the ordered-volume fraction are observed following quenches to temperatures just below the ordering transition. These results are reported and qualitatively discussed.

  13. Time-resolved small-angle x-ray-scattering study of ordering kinetics in diblock styrene-butadiene

    SciTech Connect

    Singh, M.A. ); Harkless, C.R. ); Nagler, S.E. ); Shannon, R.F. Jr.; Ghosh, S.S. )

    1993-04-01

    A detailed study of the kinetics of phase transformations of the diblock copolymer, styrene-butadiene, is reported. The technique of [ital in] [ital situ] time-resolved small-angle x-ray scattering with the use of synchrotron radiation has been used to study the first-order phase transitions of microphase separation and microdomain ordering. These transitions occur following a rapid, thermal quench from the homogeneous, disordered state to temperatures below the transition point. The isothermal ordering process is discussed in the context of classical theories of nucleation and growth. Anomalous temporal oscillations in the ordered-volume fraction are observed following quenches to temperatures just below the ordering transition. These results are reported and qualitatively discussed.

  14. Ultrathin and Micellar Block Copolymer Films for Nanopatterning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Möller, Martin

    1998-03-01

    The formation of A-B functionalized surfaces, where nanometer sized A and B patches are distinguished for their different physical and chemical properties, represent a rather virgin field of research. We will present a technology for generating nanosized chemical heterogeneous surfaces by combination of self-organization of metal particle containing diblock copolymer micelles and conventional semiconductor etching techniques. Polystrene-block-poly(2-vinylpyridine) diblock copolymers form reverse micelles in toluene, i.e., a core of P2VP is protected by a shell of PS. Such nanocompartments are used for generating metal or semiconductor particles of equal size in each single micelle in solution. The micelle stabilized particles can be cast to mono micellar films, forming quasi hexagonal arranged lattices. The particle to particle distance (10 to 200nm) is controlled by the polymer shell and the particles size (1 to 20nm) by the micellar compartment. After film formation the polymer shell can be removed comp letely by using an oxygen plasma technique resulting in the deposition of the naked clusters on different substrates without destroying the former particle organization. These highly regular metal or semiconducting nanopatches can cover macroscopic areas (5cm x 5cm). The metal patterns are used for binding single makromolecules or as masks for nanolithography. Epitaxially grown semiconductors like GaAs, InGaAs or InP have been structured by islands or holes and their quantisized band structure has been in vestigated.

  15. Unexpected Consequences of Block Polydispersity on the Self-Assembly of ABA Triblock Copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    Widin, Joan M.; Schmitt, Adam K.; Schmitt, Andrew L.; Im, Kyuhyun; Mahanthappa, Mahesh K.

    2012-05-09

    Controlled/'living' polymerizations and tandem polymerization methodologies offer enticing opportunities to enchain a wide variety of monomers into new, functional block copolymer materials with unusual physical properties. However, the use of these synthetic methods often introduces nontrivial molecular weight polydispersities, a type of chain length heterogeneity, into one or more of the copolymer blocks. While the self-assembly behavior of monodisperse AB diblock and ABA triblock copolymers is both experimentally and theoretically well understood, the effects of broadening the copolymer molecular weight distribution on block copolymer phase behavior are less well-explored. We report the melt-phase self-assembly behavior of SBS triblock copolymers (S = poly(styrene) and B = poly(1,4-butadiene)) comprised of a broad polydispersity B block (M{sub w}/M{sub n} = 1.73-2.00) flanked by relatively narrow dispersity S blocks (M{sub w}/M{sub n} = 1.09-1.36), in order to identify the effects of chain length heterogeneity on block copolymer self-assembly. Based on synchrotron small-angle X-ray scattering and transmission electron microscopy analyses of seventeen SBS triblock copolymers with poly(1,4-butadiene) volume fractions 0.27 {le} f{sub B} {le} 0.82, we demonstrate that polydisperse SBS triblock copolymers self-assemble into periodic structures with unexpectedly enhanced stabilities that greatly exceed those of equivalent monodisperse copolymers. The unprecedented stabilities of these polydisperse microphase separated melts are discussed in the context of a complete morphology diagram for this system, which demonstrates that narrow dispersity copolymers are not required for periodic nanoscale assembly.

  16. Unexpected consequences of block polydispersity on the self-assembly of ABA triblock copolymers.

    PubMed

    Widin, Joan M; Schmitt, Adam K; Schmitt, Andrew L; Im, Kyuhyun; Mahanthappa, Mahesh K

    2012-02-29

    Controlled/"living" polymerizations and tandem polymerization methodologies offer enticing opportunities to enchain a wide variety of monomers into new, functional block copolymer materials with unusual physical properties. However, the use of these synthetic methods often introduces nontrivial molecular weight polydispersities, a type of chain length heterogeneity, into one or more of the copolymer blocks. While the self-assembly behavior of monodisperse AB diblock and ABA triblock copolymers is both experimentally and theoretically well understood, the effects of broadening the copolymer molecular weight distribution on block copolymer phase behavior are less well-explored. We report the melt-phase self-assembly behavior of SBS triblock copolymers (S = poly(styrene) and B = poly(1,4-butadiene)) comprised of a broad polydispersity B block (M(w)/M(n) = 1.73-2.00) flanked by relatively narrow dispersity S blocks (M(w)/M(n) = 1.09-1.36), in order to identify the effects of chain length heterogeneity on block copolymer self-assembly. Based on synchrotron small-angle X-ray scattering and transmission electron microscopy analyses of seventeen SBS triblock copolymers with poly(1,4-butadiene) volume fractions 0.27 ≤ f(B) ≤ 0.82, we demonstrate that polydisperse SBS triblock copolymers self-assemble into periodic structures with unexpectedly enhanced stabilities that greatly exceed those of equivalent monodisperse copolymers. The unprecedented stabilities of these polydisperse microphase separated melts are discussed in the context of a complete morphology diagram for this system, which demonstrates that narrow dispersity copolymers are not required for periodic nanoscale assembly. PMID:22280467

  17. Interface-enforced complexation between copolymer blocks.

    PubMed

    Steinschulte, Alexander A; Xu, Weinan; Draber, Fabian; Hebbeker, Pascal; Jung, Andre; Bogdanovski, Dimitri; Schneider, Stefanie; Tsukruk, Vladimir V; Plamper, Felix A

    2015-05-14

    Binary diblock copolymers and corresponding ternary miktoarm stars are studied at oil-water interfaces. All polymers contain oil-soluble poly(propylene oxide) PPO, water-soluble poly(dimethylaminoethyl methacrylate) PDMAEMA and/or poly(ethylene oxide) PEO. The features of their Langmuir compression isotherms are well related to the ones of the corresponding homopolymers. Within the Langmuir-trough, PEO-b-PPO acts as the most effective amphiphile compared to the other PPO-containing copolymers. In contrast, the compression isotherms show a complexation of PPO and PDMAEMA for PPO-b-PDMAEMA and the star, reducing their overall amphiphilicity. Such complex formation between the blocks of PPO-b-PDMAEMA is prevented in bulk water but facilitated at the interface. The weakly-interacting blocks of PPO-b-PDMAEMA form a complex due to their enhanced proximity in such confined environments. Scanning force microscopy and Monte Carlo simulations with varying confinement support our results, which are regarded as compliant with the mathematical random walk theorem by Pólya. Finally, the results are expected to be of relevance for e.g. emulsion formulation and macromolecular engineering. PMID:25807174

  18. Characterization of cationic copolymers by capillary electrophoresis using indirect UV detection and contactless conductivity detection.

    PubMed

    Anik, Nadia; Airiau, Marc; Labeau, Marie-Pierre; Vuong, Chi-Thanh; Cottet, Hervé

    2012-01-01

    For many industrial applications, the combination of two different monomers in statistical or diblock copolymers enhances the properties of the corresponding polymer. However, during the polymerization reaction, homopolymers might be formed and can influence the properties for the applications. Consequently, the separation and the quantification of the homopolymers contained in copolymer samples are crucial. In addition, the charge density distribution of the statistical copolymer is an important characteristic for the applications. The purpose of this work was to study the characterization of a statistical copolymer of acrylic acid (AA) and diallyldimethyl ammonium chloride (DADMAC) by capillary electrophoresis (CE) in acidic conditions (cationic copolymers). For that purpose, a free solution electrophoretic separation was carried out according to the charge rate (chemical composition) independently of the molar mass. The second objective was to compare contactless conductivity detection and indirect UV absorbance modes for the quantification of DADMAC homopolymers present in copolymer samples. Different coated capillaries based on neutral or positively charged modification were also compared. The comparison of indirect absorbance UV and contactless conductimetric detection demonstrated that both detection modes can be used for a complete CE characterization of non-UV absorbing PAA-DADMAC copolymers. PMID:22169192

  19. Directed assembly of supramolecular copolymers in thin films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muller, Marcus; Daoulas, Kostas Ch.; Cavallo, Anna; Shenhar, Roy

    2011-03-01

    Using computer simulation of a coarse-grained model for supramolecular polymers we investigate the potential of quasi-block copolymers (QBCP) assembled on chemically patterned substrates for creating device-oriented nanostructures. QBCP are comprised of AB diblock copolymers and supramolecular B segments that can reversibly bond to any available B terminus, either on the copolymers or the B oligomers, creating a polydisperse blend of B homopolymers, AB and ABA copolymers. We focus on an AB incompatibility, χ , and strength of supramolecular bonds where a lamellar morphology, a bicontinous structure and a macrophase-separated state have comparable free energy in the bulk. We consider substrate patterns with perpendicularly crossing, A-preferential lines and demonstrate their defect-free replication by QBCP. The same QBCP replicates simultaneously patterns differing by up to 50 % in their length scales, illustrating the high versatility of QBCP materials. We discuss the interplay between pattern geometry and distribution of molecular architectures and verify the key role of supramolecular associations for replicating patterns with different length scales.

  20. Collapse Transitions in Thermosensitive Alternating Copolymers: A Monte Carlo Study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bitsanis, Ioannis; Rissanou, Anastasia; Burov, Stanislav; Manias, Eveangelos

    2009-03-01

    Alternating copolymers are expected to exhibit a rich transition behavior in selective solvents with implications in biology and the design of thermo and pH-sensitive materials. We studied transitions of model alternating copolymers of the type (AAA...)n1(BBB...)n2, in selective solvents by MC simulations. Results showed that the eminent factor, controlling response to external stimuli, is co-polymer's chemical composition.. We focused on the extreme case of a single polymer chain of N = 1000 units, distributed equally in alternate blocks of n1= n2 =100 units (A- and B- blocks). The solvent was quite selective, i.e. good for 5 100-A-blocks, whereas the 5 100 B-blocks were quite insoluble. An extended critical region, characterized by the presence of several distinct intermediate states between coil and globules, and by fluctuations strong enough to induce spontaneous transitions among these states was observed. Our findings underline that in the case of strong blockiness the alternating architecture induces collapse transitions that proceed through stages not existing in the analogous homopolymer and di-block copolymer transitions. GSRT-05-MAT-USA- 14; INTASDMR-0602877; NSF-DMR-0602877; INTAS 05-1000008-8020.

  1. Beyond Spherical Micelles in Styrene-Isoprene Block Copolymer Solutions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bang, Joona; Lodge, Timothy P.

    2004-03-01

    As macromolecular surfactants, block copolymers have been shown to self-assemble into various microstructures. Many studies have focused on aqueous systems, in which the strongly amphiphilic characteristics of the polymers lead to various micellar shapes (worms, vesicles, compound micelles, etc). However, such micellar shape changes are apparently very rare in organic systems. We report systematic shape changes of the micelles in styrene-isoprene block copolymer solutions. Remarkably, such changes could be accomplished in a single block copolymer by varying the solvent selectivity. We studied two asymmetric poly(styrene-b-isoprene) diblock copolymers with the styrene volume fractions of approximately 0.15 in a series of solvents with varying styrene selectivity, dibuthyl phthalate, diethyl phthalate, and dimethyl phthalate. The degree of the solvent selectivity was adjusted by mixing two solvents. With increasing solvent selectivity, the micellar shape changes from cylindrical micelles to bilayer vesicles, and then phase-separates, reflecting the changing interfacial curvature induced by solvent selectivity. The detailed micellar morphologies were characterized by dynamic light scattering, rheology, electron microscopy, and small angle x-ray scattering.

  2. Morphology of Novel Semicrystalline Ethylene-α-Olefin Block Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Sheng; Register, Richard; Landes, Brian

    2009-03-01

    In semicrystalline block copolymers, the solid-state structure can be set either by block incompatibility or by crystallization of one or more blocks. Depending on the block interaction strength, a wide array of solid-state morphologies may be observed, ranging from spherulitic to confined crystallization within preexisting microphase-separated domains. Dow Chemical has recently developed a novel chain shuttling polymerization process to produce olefin block copolymers with alternating amorphous and semicrystalline chain segments, where each block exhibits the most-probable distribution. We examined the melt and solid-state morphologies of these novel olefin block copolymers, having a high octene content in the amorphous block, using two- dimensional synchrotron small-angle and wide-angle x-ray scattering on specimens oriented by channel die compression. Multiblock and diblock copolymers with near-symmetric compositions showed well-ordered lamellar structures at room temperature with long periods exceeding 100 nm, with little dependence on thermal history, indicating the presence of a mesophase-separated melt which templates crystallization.

  3. Junction-Controlled Elasticity of Single-Walled Carbon Nanotube Dispersions in Acrylic Copolymer Gels and Solutions

    SciTech Connect

    Schoch, Andrew B.; Shull, Kenneth R.; Brinson, L. Catherine

    2008-08-26

    Oscillatory shear rheometry is used to study the mechanical response of single-walled carbon nanotubes dispersed in solutions of acrylic diblock or triblock copolymers in 2-ethyl-1-hexanol. Thermal transitions in the copolymer solutions provide a route for the easy processing of these composite materials, with excellent dispersion of the nanotubes as verified by near-infrared photoluminescence spectroscopy. The nanotube dispersions form elastic networks with properties that are controlled by the junction points between nanotubes, featuring a temperature-dependent elastic response that is controlled by the dynamic properties of the matrix copolymer solution. The data are consistent with the formation of micelle-like aggregates around the nanotubes. At low temperatures the core-forming poly(methyl methacrylate) blocks are glassy, and the overall mechanical response of the composite does not evolve with time. At higher temperatures the enhanced mobility of the core-forming blocks enables the junctions to achieve more intimate nanotube-nanotube contact, and the composite modulus increases with time. These aging effects are observed in both diblock and triblock copolymer solutions but are partially reversed in the triblock solutions by cooling through the gel transition of the triblock copolymer. This result is attributed to the generation of internal stresses during gelation and the ability of these stresses to break or weaken the nanotube junctions.

  4. Time and Temperature Dependent Rheological Behavior of Single-Walled Carbon Nanotubes Dispersed in Thermoreversible Acrylic Copolymer & Alcohol Solutions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schoch, Andrew B.; Shull, Kenneth R.; Brinson, L. Catherine

    2008-03-01

    SWCNT stabilized by A-B diblock and A-B-A triblock copolymers are excellent model systems for studying the relationship between nanotube dispersion and mechanical response. We have investigated the mechanical properties of these materials with low-amplitude oscillatory shear rheological measurements. The solvent used here, 2-ethyl-1-hexanol, is a poor solvent for PMMA (A) at low temperatures but a good solvent for PnBA (B) over the entire temperature range studied. The solubility of the PMMA blocks in 2-ethyl-1-hexanol drives the formation of an elastic gel in the ABA triblock copolymer at low temperatures. In these SWCNT/copolymer materials the storage and loss moduli have been observed to increase with time at fixed temperature. When triblock copolymer gels are used as the matrix, we find that the aging effect is erased by cycling the temperature through the gel transition. An increase in storage modulus is observed upon cooling before the gel formation. However, the moduli revert back to lower values when the gel dissolves on heating. We believe this is a result of semi-permanent nanotube junctions being pulled apart when the gel forms. This reversibility is not observed when the nanotubes are dispersed in solutions of diblock copolymer, which do not form gels.

  5. Rapidly recovering hydrogel scaffolds from self-assembling diblock copolypeptide amphiphiles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nowak, Andrew P.; Breedveld, Victor; Pakstis, Lisa; Ozbas, Bulent; Pine, David J.; Pochan, Darrin; Deming, Timothy J.

    2002-05-01

    Protein-based hydrogels are used for many applications, ranging from food and cosmetic thickeners to support matrices for drug delivery and tissue replacement. These materials are usually prepared using proteins extracted from natural sources, which can give rise to inconsistent properties unsuitable for medical applications. Recent developments have utilized recombinant DNA methods to prepare artificial protein hydrogels with specific association mechanisms and responsiveness to various stimuli. Here we synthesize diblock copolypeptide amphiphiles containing charged and hydrophobic segments. Dilute solutions of these copolypeptides would be expected to form micelles; instead, they form hydrogels that retain their mechanical strength up to temperatures of about 90°C and recover rapidly after stress. The use of synthetic materials permits adjustment of copolymer chain length and composition, which we varied to study their effect on hydrogel formation and properties. We find that gelation depends not only on the amphiphilic nature of the polypeptides, but also on chain conformations-α-helix, β-strand or random coil. Indeed, shape-specific supramolecular assembly is integral to the gelation process, and provides a new class of peptide-based hydrogels with potential for applications in biotechnology.

  6. Quantitative study of temperature-dependent order in thin films of cylindrical morphology block copolymer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mishra, Vindhya; Kramer, Edward

    2010-03-01

    Disordering and defect generation in block copolymer systems at high temperatures is of significance to get a better understanding of the physics governing these systems, which can also direct efforts to minimize them. We have studied the smectic-nematic-isotropic transition in confined monolayers and bilayers of cylindrical morphology poly (styrene-b-2vinyl pyridine) diblock copolymer. Previous studies of melting phenomena in block copolymer thin films have relied on quantitative AFM studies alone. We have supplemented AFM studies with grazing incidence small angle X-ray diffraction lineshape analysis to quantify the decay of translational and orientational order with increasing temperature. The results have been interpreted in the context of the Toner-Nelson theory of melting for layered systems.

  7. Structure-Property Relationships in Polyolefin Block Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mansour, Ameara Salah

    Poly(cyclohexylethylene) (PCHE for a homopolymer or C in a block copolymer) is created by hydrogenating polystyrene, and this polymer exhibits interesting properties, such as a high glass transition temperature (147 °C), high flexural modulus (2.8 GPa), low stress optical coefficient (-0.2 * 10-9 Pa-1), and low cost. However, the inherently brittle nature of PCHE prevents it from being used in applications that simultaneously require high modulus, ductility, thermal stability, and optical clarity. Previous research has shown that incorporating PCHE into a block copolymer with rubbery poly(ethylene-alt-propylene) (P) or poly(ethylethylene) (EE) or semicrystalline polyethylene (E) results in a tough material. In some cases, applications also require specific mechanical or optical properties. In order to tune these properties, this research examined tuning crystallinity using two methods: (1) by controlling the microstructure of the soft block by synthesizing a random copolymer of E and EE, and (2) by blending high C content pentablock copolymers with semicrystalline and rubbery minority components. In the first study, diblock copolymers of C(EcoEE) also were used to understand how the microstructure of the random copolymer affects the thermodynamics of the system. In the second study, CECEC and CPCPC, designed to form the same morphology (hexagonally packed cylinders with glassy C matrices), and have similar order-to-disorder transition temperatures and domain spacings, were blended together. Isothermal crystallization experiments were used to determine how the confining E and P in one domain affects the crystallization process. The effect of architecture, the state of the minority component, and the percent crystallinity on the mechanical properties of high glass content materials was also examined. These results were compared to the mechanical properties of homopolymer PCHE, polystyrene, and polycarbonate. The processing conditions needed to create smooth films of

  8. Dynamics of Block Copolymer Nanocomposites

    SciTech Connect

    Mochrie, Simon G. J.

    2014-09-09

    A detailed study of the dynamics of cadmium sulfide nanoparticles suspended in polystyrene homopolymer matrices was carried out using X-ray photon correlation spectroscopy for temperatures between 120 and 180 °C. For low molecular weight polystyrene homopolymers, the observed dynamics show a crossover from diffusive to hyper-diffusive behavior with decreasing temperatures. For higher molecular weight polystyrene, the nanoparticle dynamics appear hyper-diffusive at all temperatures studied. The relaxation time and characteristic velocity determined from the measured hyper-diffusive dynamics reveal that the activation energy and underlying forces determined are on the order of 2.14 × 10-19 J and 87 pN, respectively. We also carried out a detailed X-ray scattering study of the static and dynamic behavior of a styrene– isoprene diblock copolymer melt with a styrene volume fraction of 0.3468. At 115 and 120 °C, we observe splitting of the principal Bragg peak, which we attribute to phase coexistence of hexagonal cylindrical and cubic double- gyroid structure. In the disordered phase, above 130 °C, we have characterized the dynamics of composition fluctuations via X-ray photon correlation spectroscopy. Near the peak of the static structure factor, these fluctuations show stretched-exponential relaxations, characterized by a stretching exponent of about 0.36 for a range of temperatures immediately above the MST. The corresponding characteristic relaxation times vary exponentially with temperature, changing by a factor of 2 for each 2 °C change in temperature. At low wavevectors, the measured relaxations are diffusive with relaxation times that change by a factor of 2 for each 8 °C change in temperature.

  9. Biological materials: Part A. tuning LCST of raft copolymers and gold/copolymer hybrid nanoparticles and Part B. Biobased nanomaterials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Ning

    The research described in this dissertation is comprised of two major parts. The first part studied the effects of asymmetric amphiphilic end groups on the thermo-response of diblock copolymers of (oligo/di(ethylene glycol) methyl ether (meth)acrylates, OEGA/DEGMA) and the hybrid nanoparticles of these copolymers with a gold nanoparticle core. Placing the more hydrophilic end group on the more hydrophilic block significantly increased the cloud point compared to a similar copolymer composition with the end group placement reversed. For a given composition, the cloud point was shifted by as much as 28 °C depending on the placement of end groups. This is a much stronger effect than either changing the hydrophilic/hydrophobic block ratio or replacing the hydrophilic acrylate monomer with the equivalent methacrylate monomer. The temperature range of the coil-globule transition was also altered. Binding these diblock copolymers to a gold core decreased the cloud point by 5-15 °C and narrowed the temperature range of the coil-globule transition. The effects were more pronounced when the gold core was bound to the less hydrophilic block. Given the limited numbers of monomers that are approved safe for in vivo use, employing amphiphilic end group placement is a useful tool to tune a thermo-response without otherwise changing the copolymer composition. The second part of the dissertation investigated the production of value-added nanomaterials from two biorefinery "wastes": lignin and peptidoglycan. Different solvents and spinning methods (melt-, wet-, and electro-spinning) were tested to make lignin/cellulose blended and carbonized fibers. Only electro-spinning yielded fibers having a small enough diameter for efficient carbonization (≤ 5-10 μm), but it was concluded that cellulose was not a suitable binder. Cellulose lignin fibers before carbonization showed up to 90% decrease in moisture uptake compared to pure cellulose. Peptidoglycan (a bacterial cell wall

  10. Amphiphilic Diblock Terpolymer PMAgala-b-P(MAA-co-MAChol)s with Attached Galactose and Cholesterol Grafts and Their Intracellular pH-Responsive Doxorubicin Delivery.

    PubMed

    Wang, Zhao; Luo, Ting; Sheng, Ruilong; Li, Hui; Sun, Jingjing; Cao, Amin

    2016-01-11

    In this work, a series of diblock terpolymer poly(6-O-methacryloyl-D-galactopyranose)-b-poly(methacrylic acid-co-6-cholesteryloxy hexyl methacrylate) amphiphiles bearing attached galactose and cholesterol grafts denoted as the PMAgala-b-P(MAA-co-MAChol)s were designed and prepared, and these terpolymer amphiphiles were further exploited as a platform for intracellular doxorubicin (DOX) delivery. First, employing a sequential RAFT strategy with preliminarily synthesized poly(6-O-methacryloyl-1,2:3,4-di-O-isopropylidene-d-galactopyranose) (PMAIpGP) macro-RAFT initiator and a successive trifluoroacetic acid (TFA)-mediated deprotection, a series of amphiphilic diblock terpolymer PMAgala-b-P(MAA-co-MAChol)s were prepared, and were further characterized by NMR, Fourier transform infrared spectrometer (FTIR), gel permeation chromatography (GPC), differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), and a dynamic contact angle testing instrument (DCAT). In aqueous media, spontaneous micellization of the synthesized diblock terpolymer amphiphiles were continuously examined by critical micellization concentration assay, dynamic light scattering (DLS), and transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and the efficacies of DOX loading by these copolymer micelles were investigated along with the complexed nanoparticle stability. Furthermore, in vitro DOX release of the drug-loaded terpolymer micelles were studied at 37 °C in buffer under various pH conditions, and cell toxicities of as-synthesized diblock amphiphiles were examined by MTT assay. Finally, with H1299 cells, intracellular DOX delivery and localization by the block amphiphile vectors were investigated by invert fluorescence microscopy. As a result, it was revealed that the random copolymerization of MAA and MAChol comonomers in the second block limited the formation of cholesterol liquid-crystal phase and enhanced DOX loading efficiency and complex nanoparticle stability, that ionic interactions between the DOX and MAA comonomer

  11. The effect of copolymers on the interfaces in incompatible homopolymers blend: Molecular dynamics study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ryu, Jiho; Lee, Won Bo

    2015-03-01

    Using molecular dynamics simulations the effect of copolymers as compatibilizer for reducing interfacial tension and enhancement of interfacial adhesion at the interface of thermodynamic unfavorable homopolymers blend is studied with block- and graft-copolymers. We have calculated local pressure tensor of system along the axis perpendicular to interface, varying bending potential energy of one part, which consist of just one kind of beads, of copolymer chain to examine the effect of stiffness of surfactin molecules. Here we consider symmetric diblock copolymer (f =1/2) having 1/2 N make of beads of type A and the other part made of beads of type B, and graft copolymer having backbone linear chain consist of 1/2 N beads of type of A and branched with two side-chain consist of 1/4 N beads of type B. All simulations were performed under the constant NPT ensemble at T* =1, ρ* ~0.85. Also we studied changes of effect of copolymers with increasing pairwise repulsive interaction potential between two beads of types A and B while homopolymers chain length are fixed, N =30. Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Sogang University, Seoul, South Korea.

  12. Formation of nanoscale networks: selectively swelling amphiphilic block copolymers with CO2-expanded liquids.

    PubMed

    Gong, Jianliang; Zhang, Aijuan; Bai, Hua; Zhang, Qingkun; Du, Can; Li, Lei; Hong, Yanzhen; Li, Jun

    2013-02-01

    Polymeric films with nanoscale networks were prepared by selectively swelling an amphiphilic diblock copolymer, polystyrene-block-poly(4-vinylpyridine) (PS-b-P4VP), with the CO(2)-expanded liquid (CXL), CO(2)-methanol. The phase behavior of the CO(2)-methanol system was investigated by both theoretical calculation and experiments, revealing that methanol can be expanded by CO(2), forming homogeneous CXL under the experimental conditions. When treated with the CO(2)-methanol system, the spin cast compact PS-b-P4VP film was transformed into a network with interconnected pores, in a pressure range of 12-20 MPa and a temperature range of 45-60 °C. The formation mechanism of the network, involving plasticization of PS and selective swelling of P4VP, was proposed. Because the diblock copolymer diffusion process is controlled by the activated hopping of individual block copolymer chains with the thermodynamic barrier for moving PVP segments from one to another, the formation of the network structures is achieved in a short time scale and shows "thermodynamically restricted" character. Furthermore, the resulting polymer networks were employed as templates, for the preparation of polypyrrole networks, by an electrochemical polymerization process. The prepared porous polypyrrole film was used to fabricate a chemoresistor-type gas sensor which showed high sensitivity towards ammonia. PMID:23299578

  13. Bioinspired amphiphilic phosphate block copolymers as non-fluoride materials to prevent dental erosion.

    PubMed

    Lei, Yanda; Wang, Tongxin; Mitchell, James W; Zaidel, Lynette; Qiu, Jianhong; Kilpatrick-Liverman, LaTonya

    2014-01-01

    Inspired by the fact that certain natural proteins, e.g. casein phosphopeptide or amelogenin, are able to prevent tooth erosion (mineral loss) and to enhance tooth remineralization, a synthetic amphiphilic diblock copolymer, containing a hydrophilic methacryloyloxyethyl phosphate block (MOEP) and a hydrophobic methyl methacrylate block (MMA), was designed as a novel non-fluoride agent to prevent tooth erosion under acidic conditions. The structure of the polymer, synthesized by reversible addition-fragment transfer (RAFT) polymerization, was confirmed by gel permeation chromatography (GPC), Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (NMR). While the hydrophilic PMOEP block within the amphiphilic block copolymer strongly binds to the enamel surface, the PMMA block forms a hydrophobic shell to prevent acid attack on tooth enamel, thus preventing/reducing acid erosion. The polymer treatment not only effectively decreased the mineral loss of hydroxyapatite (HAP) by 36-46% compared to the untreated control, but also protected the surface morphology of the enamel specimen following exposure to acid. Additionally, experimental results confirmed that low pH values and high polymer concentrations facilitate polymer binding. Thus, the preliminary data suggests that this new amphiphilic diblock copolymer has the potential to be used as a non-fluoride ingredient for mouth-rinse or toothpaste to prevent/reduce tooth erosion. PMID:25419457

  14. Thermodynamics of coil-hyperbranched poly(styrene-b-acrylated epoxidized soybean oil) block copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Fang-Yi; Hohmann, Austin; Hernández, Nacú; Cochran, Eric

    Here we present the phase behavior of a new type of coil-hyperbranched diblock copolymer: poly(styrene- b-acrylated epoxidized soybean oil), or PS-PAESO. PS-PAESO is an example of a biorenewable thermoplastic elastomer (bio-TPE). To date, we have shown that bio-TPEs can be economical commercial substitutes for their petrochemically derived analogues--such as poly(styrene- b-butadiene- b-styrene) (SBS)--in a range of applications including pressure sensitive adhesives and bitumen modification. From a polymer physics perspective, PS-PAESO is an interesting material in that it couples a linear coil-like block with a highly branched block. Thus in contrast to the past five decades of studies on linear AB diblock copolymers, coil-hyperbranched block copolymers are relatively unknown to the community and can be expected to deviate substantially from the standard ``universal'' phase behavior in the AB systems. To explore these new materials, we have constructed a library of PS-PAESO materials spanning a range of molecular weight and composition values. The phase transition behavior and the morphology information will be interpreted by isochronal temperature scanning in dynamic shear rheology, small angle X-ray scattering and the corresponding transmission electron microscopy.

  15. Melt and Solid-State Structures of Polydisperse Polyolefin Multiblock Copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    Li, Sheng; Register, Richard A.; Weinhold, Jeffrey D.; Landes, Brian G.

    2012-10-23

    Crystallization in polydisperse ethylene-octene multiblock copolymers, polymerized via chain shuttling chemistry, is examined using two-dimensional synchrotron small- and wide-angle X-ray scattering on flow-aligned specimens. The multiblocks are composed of alternating crystalline (hard) blocks of low 1-octene content and amorphous (soft) blocks of high 1-octene content; the block lengths and the number of blocks per chain are characterized by most-probable distributions. These polymers self-assemble into lamellar domain morphologies in the melt, and the melt morphology is retained in the solid state. Despite extensive mixing between hard and soft blocks, the high crystallinity (>50%) of the hard blocks leads to an alignment of the crystallites within the domain structure, with the orthorhombic polyethylene c-axis generally perpendicular to the lamellar domain normal. The interlamellar domain spacings exhibited by the multiblocks, which exceed 100 nm, are estimated to be 5 times larger than those in near-monodisperse block copolymers having a similar chemical composition and a number-average molecular weight equivalent to the multiblock's 'constituent diblock' repeating unit. This swelling factor exceeds the value of 3 previously reported for analogous polydisperse olefin diblock copolymers, due to the lower segregation strength and enhanced phase mixing of the multiblocks studied here.

  16. Thin Isoporous Block Copolymer Membranes: It Is All about the Process.

    PubMed

    Hahn, Janina; Clodt, Juliana I; Abetz, Clarissa; Filiz, Volkan; Abetz, Volker

    2015-09-30

    The combination of the self-assembly of amphiphilic block copolymers and the nonsolvent induced phase inversion process offers an efficient way to isoporous integral-asymmetric membranes. In this context we report fast, easily upscalable and material reducing ways to thin self-assembled membranes. Therefore, we succeeded to implement a spray or dip coating step into the membrane formation process of different diblock copolymers like polystyrene-block-poly(4-vinylpyridine), poly(α-methylstyrene)-bock-poly(4-vinylpyridine), and polystyrene-block-poly(iso-propylglycidyl methacrylate). The formation of hexagonal pore structures was possible using a highly diluted one solvent system allowing the reduction of diblock copolymer consumption and therefore the production costs are minimized compared to conventional blade casting approaches. The broad applicability of the process was proven by using different flat and hollow fiber support materials. Furthermore, the membranes made by this new method showed a more than 6-fold increase in water flux compared to conventional polystyrene-block-poly(4-vinylpyridine) membranes with similar pore sizes prepared by blade casting. The membranes could be proven to be stable at transmembrane pressures of 2 bar and showed a pH responsive flux behavior over several cycles. PMID:26349610

  17. "Hairy" Nanoparticles in Block Copolymers and Homopolymers: Modeling using Hybrid Self-Consistent Field Theory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ginzburg, Valeriy

    2011-03-01

    Today, dispersed nanoparticles play important role in various applications (toughened plastics, healthcare, personal care, etc.) Mesoscale simulations and theory are important in understanding what governs the morphology of nanoparticles under various conditions. In particular, for nanoparticle/block copolymer mixtures, two popular simulation methods are Self-Consistent Field/Density Functional Theory (SCF-DFT) (Thompson, Ginzburg, Matsen, and Balazs, Science 292, 2469 [2001]), and Hybrid Self-Consistent Field Theory (HSCFT) (Sides et al., Phys Rev Lett 96, 250601 [2006]). The two methods are shown to be very similar in their assumptions and end-results; the choice of the method to be used can depend on the specific problem. Here, we use modified HSCFT to explicitly account for the complicated role of short-chain ligands grafted onto nanoparticles to promote dispersion. In particular, we discuss the phase diagrams of such ``hairy'' nanoparticles in diblock copolymers as function of diblock composition, nanoparticle volume fraction, and ligand length. Depending on the particle size and ligand coverage, particles could segregate into favorable domain, stay close to the interface, or phase-separate from the block copolymer altogether. We also consider the dispersion of ``hairy'' nanoparticles in a homopolymer and analyze the morphologies of particle clusters as function of ligand length. The results could have interesting implications for the design of new nanocomposite materials.

  18. Influencing the structure of block copolymer micelles with small molecule additives

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Robertson, Megan; Singh, Avantika; Cooksey, Tyler; Kidd, Bryce; Piemonte, Rachele; Wang, Shu; Mai Le, Kim; Madsen, Louis

    Amphiphilic block copolymer micelles in water are under broad exploration for drug delivery applications due to their high loading capacity and targeted drug delivery. We aim to understand the kinetic and thermodynamic processes that underlie the self-assembly of diblock copolymer micelle systems. The present work focuses on diblock copolymers containing poly(ethylene oxide) (a hydrophilic polymer) and polycaprolactone (a hydrophobic polymer), which spontaneously self-assemble into spherical micelles in water. Addition of a common good solvent (a co-solvent) for both of the constituting blocks, such as tetrahydrofuran (THF), reduces the interfacial tension at the core-corona interface. We are currently investigating the effect of this phenomenon on the micelle structural properties, using small-angle scattering and nuclear magnetic resonance. We have characterized the hydrodynamic radius, core radius, corona thickness, aggregation number, degree of swelling of the micelle core with the co-solvent, and unimer (free chain) concentration, as a function of the co-solvent concentration. Fundamental knowledge from these studies will inform design of drug delivery systems by allowing us to tailor micelle properties for optimal cargo loading.

  19. Structure of block copolymer micelles in the presence of co-solvents

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Robertson, Megan; Wang, Shu; Le, Kim Mai; Piemonte, Rachele; Madsen, Louis

    2015-03-01

    Amphiphilic block copolymer micelles in water are under broad exploration for drug delivery applications due to their high loading capacity and targeted drug delivery. We aim to understand the kinetic and thermodynamic processes that underlie the self-assembly of diblock copolymer micelle systems. The present work focuses on diblock copolymers containing poly(ethylene oxide) (a hydrophilic polymer) and polycaprolactone (a hydrophobic polymer), which spontaneously self-assemble into spherical micelles in water. Addition of a common good solvent (a co-solvent) for both of the constituting blocks, such as tetrahydrofuran (THF), reduces the interfacial tension at the core-corona interface. We are currently investigating the effect of this phenomenon on the micelle structural properties, using scattering experiments and nuclear magnetic resonance. We have characterized the hydrodynamic radius, core radius, corona thickness, aggregation number, degree of swelling of the micelle core with the co-solvent, and unimer (free chain) concentration, as a function of the co-solvent concentration. Fundamental knowledge from these studies will inform design of drug delivery systems by allowing us to tailor micelle properties for optimal cargo loading.

  20. NEUTRON REFLECTIVITY OF LINEAR-DENDRITIC DIBLOCK COPOLYMER MONOLAYERS. (R825224)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The perspectives, information and conclusions conveyed in research project abstracts, progress reports, final reports, journal abstracts and journal publications convey the viewpoints of the principal investigator and may not represent the views and policies of ORD and EPA. Concl...

  1. Symmetry Transition in Thin Films of Diblock Copolymer/Homopolymer Blends

    SciTech Connect

    Mishra, Vindhya; Hur, Su-mi; Cochran, Eric W.; Stein, Gila E.; Fredrickson, Glenn H.; Kramer, Edward J.

    2010-03-30

    The effect of blending small weight fractions of low molecular weight majority block homopolymer on the structure of multilayer films of spherical morphology poly(styrene-b-2vinylpyridine) [PS-P2VP] has been studied. The structure of the films was characterized with grazing-incidence small-angle X-ray scattering (GISAXS) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). In multilayer films of PS-P2VP, competition between hexagonal packing of the spherical domains preferred at the surfaces with the BCC (110) packing preferred by the internal layers leads to a transition in the packing symmetry as the number of sphere layers (n) is increased.(1) Neat PS-P2VP exhibits hexagonal close-packed (HCP) symmetry up through n = 4, but at four layers coexistence of hexagonal and face-centered orthorhombic phases is observed. At n = n* = 5 the face-centered orthorhombic structure (FCO) is the stable phase. On increasing n further, the FCO phase continuously distorts to approach the arrangement of the BCC (110) plane. We observe that blending a small weight fraction of low molecular weight PS homopolymer with PS-P2VP suppresses this transition and stabilizes the hexagonal close-packed arrangement beyond four layers. Moreover, n* increases with increasing weight fraction of incorporated homopolymer for the small weight fractions of homopolymer used in this study. Self-consistent-field theory simulations designed to mimic the experimental system corroborate that n* is expected to increase and show that the PS homopolymer segregates to the interstices of the HCP unit cell. This suggests that the homopolymer reduces the stretching of the PS block and the free energy penalty of HCP relative to BCC inner layers. This result is consistent with the hypothesis that the excessive stretching requirement in an HCP arrangement is the cause of its higher free energy as compared to the BCC lattice.

  2. Phase behavior of nanoparticle/diblock copolymer in a selective solvent.

    SciTech Connect

    Lo, C.-T.; Lee, B.; Winans, R. E.; Thiyagarajan, P.

    2007-01-01

    Solvents used for controlling the self-assembly of polymer nanocomposites have a strong influence on the order-disorder and order-order transition temperatures. We have investigated the phase behavior of complexes composed of poly(styrene-b-2-vinylpyridine) (PS-PVP) and thiol-terminated PS stabilized Au nanoparticles in toluene-d (a good solvent for PS) by using small-angle neutron scattering. We observe that the morphologies of the neat and nanoparticle-containing polymer solutions strongly depend on the concentration of nanoparticles and temperature. Comparison of the phase diagrams of the neat and nanoparticle-containing polymer solutions as a function of temperature clearly shows dramatic shifts in the order-disorder and order-order transition temperatures. This dramatic effect can be understood by a model wherein the added nanoparticles that sequester in the preferred PS domains increase the interfacial curvature, leading to the observed changes in the nanostructure of the complex. Some effects are similar to those of the selective solvent such as toluene on the nanostructure of PS-PVP. Knowledge gained from these studies on the effects of nanoparticle concentration and temperature on the phase behavior of the polymer nanocomposites will be valuable for tailoring the physical properties of novel nanocomposites.

  3. Tailor-made dimensions of diblock copolymer truncated micelles on a solid by UV irradiation.

    PubMed

    Liou, Jiun-You; Sun, Ya-Sen

    2015-09-28

    We investigated the structural evolution of truncated micelles in ultrathin films of polystyrene-block-poly(2-vinylpyridine), PS-b-P2VP, of monolayer thickness on bare silicon substrates (SiOx/Si) upon UV irradiation in air- (UVIA) and nitrogen-rich (UVIN) environments. The structural evolution of micelles upon UV irradiation was monitored using GISAXS measurements in situ, while the surface morphology was probed using atomic force microscopy ex situ and the chemical composition using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). This work provides clear evidence for the interpretation of the relationship between the structural evolution and photochemical reactions in PS-b-P2VP truncated micelles upon UVIA and UVIN. Under UVIA treatment, photolysis and cross-linking reactions coexisted within the micelles; photolysis occurred mainly at the top of the micelles, whereas cross-linking occurred preferentially at the bottom. The shape and size of UVIA-treated truncated micelles were controlled predominantly by oxidative photolysis reactions, which depended on the concentration gradient of free radicals and oxygen along the micelle height. Because of an interplay between photolysis and photo-crosslinking, the scattering length densities (SLD) of PS and P2VP remained constant. In contrast, UVIN treatments enhanced the contrast in SLD between the PS shell and the P2VP core as cross-linking dominated over photolysis in the presence of nitrogen. The enhancement of the SLD contrast was due to the various degrees of cross-linking under UVIN for the PS and P2VP blocks. PMID:26251976

  4. Vertical Conducting Nanodomains Self-Assembled from Poly(3-hexylthiophene)-Based Diblock Copolymer Thin Films

    SciTech Connect

    Y Lee; S Kim; H Yang; M Jang; S Hwang; H Lee; K Baek

    2011-12-31

    We have synthesized {pi}-conjugated poly(3-hexyl thiophene)-block-poly(methyl methacrylate) (P3HT-b-PMMA) with a P3HT molecular weight of 11 kDa and a PMMA volume fraction of 0.53, which potentially has several organic electronic applications. Its phase-separation behavior was investigated for various thicknesses cast from organic solvents. When cast onto 300 nm thick SiO{sub 2} dielectrics from toluene, in which the P3HT segments have limited solubility, the P3HT-b-PMMA films consist of nanofibrillar self-assemblies of laterally {pi}-stacked P3HT chains. In contrast, the P3HT segments were found to be highly mobile in chlorobenzene, generating a typical phase-separation morphology consisting of vertically conducting P3HT nanodomains on these dielectrics. As the thickness of the cast films increased, however, the topmost surface becomes covered with {pi}-conjugated nanofibrils that are laterally oriented with respect to the surface. Due to the anisotropic domain orientations of P3HT, top-gate organic field-effect transistors (OFETs) containing the P3HT-b-PMMA films exhibited enhanced electrical performance compared to bottom-gate OFETs.

  5. Fabrication of Nanohole Array via Nanodot Array Using Simple Self-Assembly Process of Diblock Copolymer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matsuyama, Tsuyoshi; Kawata, Yoshimasa

    2007-06-01

    We present a simple self-assembly process for fabricating a nanohole array via a nanodot array on a glass substrate by dripping ethanol onto the nanodot array. It is found that well-aligned arrays of nanoholes as well as nanodots are formed on the whole surface of the glass. A dot is transformed into a hole, and the alignment of the nanodots strongly reflects that of the nanoholes. We find that the change in the depth of holes agrees well with the change in the surface energy with the ethanol concentration in the aqueous solution. We believe that the interfacial energy between the nanodots and the dripped ethanol causes the transformation from nanodots into nanoholes. The nanohole arrays are directly applicable to molds for nanopatterned media used in high-density near-field optical data storage. The bit data can be stored and read out using probes with small apertures.

  6. Patterned carbon nanotubes fabricated by the combination of microcontact printing and diblock copolymer micelles.

    PubMed

    Xu, Peng; Ji, Xin; Qi, Junlei; Yang, Hongmin; Zheng, Weitao; Abetz, Volker; Jiang, Shimei; Shen, Jiacong

    2010-01-01

    A convenient approach to synthesize patterned carbon nanotubes (CNTs) of three morphologies on printed substrates by combination of microcontact printing (microCP) and a plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) process is presented. Micelles of polystyrene-block-poly-(2-vinylpyridine) (PS-b-P2VP) in toluene were used as nanoreactors to fabricate FeCl3 in the core domains, and the complex solution was used as an ink to print films with polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) stamps, different morphologies (porous, dots and stripes patterns) of the FeCl3-loaded micellar films were left onto silicon substrates after printed. After removing the polymer by thermal decomposition, the left iron oxide cluster arrays on the substrate were used as catalysts for the growth of CNTs by the process of PECVD, where the CNTs uniformly distributed on the substrates according to the morphologies of patterned catalysts arrays. PMID:20352884

  7. Thermo-/pH-responsive behaviours of base-rich diblock polyampholytes in aqueous solution: experiment and simulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Han, Xia; Feng, Jian; Dong, Fang; Zhang, Xuxia; Liu, Honglai; Hu, Ying

    2014-08-01

    We report on the thermo-responsive and pH-responsive behaviours exhibited by two poly(acrylic acid)-poly(2-(dimethylamino)ethyl methacrylate) diblock copolymers with unbalanced acid-base compositions, PAA40-PDMAEMA120 and PAA40-PDMAEMA285, in water, a selective solvent. Using a combination of ultraviolet-visible (UV-vis) spectroscopy and dynamic light scattering, the dual-stimuli responsive behaviours can be clearly detected. The ζ-potential decreases sharply for a symmetrical counterpart PAA60-PDMAEMA70 solution, while it changes evenly for PAA40-PDMAEMA120 and PAA40-PDMAEMA285 solutions because of the asymmetrical compositions. The lower critical solution temperature of the PAA40-PDMAEMA285 solution is always less than that of the PAA40-PDMAEMA120 solution at the same solution concentration and pH values. The molecular dynamics simulation is used to explore the molecular mechanism of the responsive behaviour. The simulation also evidences the presence of dual-stimuli responsive behaviour of the copolymer with respect to changes in temperature and pH in aqueous solutions. The radius of gyration Rg and the end-to-end distance Re of the asymmetric polyampholyte A20-B60 are smaller than those of the symmetric one A40-B40 at all simulated temperatures, which indicates increased aggregation behaviour and the compact aggregates of asymmetric polyampholyte chains. The effect of polymer molecular mass MW on the aggregation behaviour seems to be more profound than that of polymer composition, which may be attributed to the fact that increasing the molecular weight of the copolymer increases the variability of the micelle sizes. Additionally, hydrophobic interaction plays a key role in the aggregation process.

  8. Non-Classical Order in Sphere Forming ABAC Tetrablock Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Jingwen; Sides, Scott; Bates, Frank

    2013-03-01

    AB diblock and ABC triblock copolymers have been studied thoroughly. ABAC tetrablock copolymers, representing the simplest variation from ABC triblock by breaking the molecular symmetry via inserting some of the A block in between B and C blocks, have been studied systematically in this research. The model system is poly(styrene-b-isoprene-b-styrene-b-ethylene oxide) (SISO) tetrablock terpolymers and the resulting morphologies were characterized by nuclear magnetic resonance, gel permeation chromatography, small-angle X-ray scattering, transmission electron microscopy, differential scanning calorimetry and dynamic mechanical spectroscopy. Two novel phases are first discovered in a single component block copolymers: hexagonally ordered spherical phase and tentatively identified dodecagonal quasicrystalline (QC) phase. In particular, the discovery of QC phase bridges the world of soft matters to that of metals. These unusual sets of morphologies will be discussed in the context of segregation under the constraints associated with the tetrablock molecular architecture. Theoretical calculations based on the assumption of Gaussian chain statistics provide valuable insights into the molecular configurations associated with these morphologies. the U.S. Department of Energy, Basic Energy Sciences, Division of Materials Science and Engineering, under contract number DEAC05-00OR22725 with UT-Battelle LLC at Oak Ridge National Lab.

  9. Morphology and Proton Transport in Humidified Phosphonated Peptoid Block Copolymers

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Polymers that conduct protons in the hydrated state are of crucial importance in a wide variety of clean energy applications such as hydrogen fuel cells and artificial photosynthesis. Phosphonated and sulfonated polymers are known to conduct protons at low water content. In this paper, we report on the synthesis phosphonated peptoid diblock copolymers, poly-N-(2-ethyl)hexylglycine-block-poly-N-phosphonomethylglycine (pNeh-b-pNpm), with volume fractions of pNpm (ϕNpm) values ranging from 0.13 to 0.44 and dispersity (Đ) ≤ 1.0003. The morphologies of the dry block copolypeptoids were determined by transmission electron microscopy and in both the dry and hydrated states by synchrotron small-angle X-ray scattering. Dry samples with ϕNpm > 0.13 exhibited a lamellar morphology. Upon hydration, the lowest molecular weight sample transitioned to a hexagonally packed cylinder morphology, while the others maintained their dry morphologies. Water uptake of all of the ordered samples was 8.1 ± 1.1 water molecules per phosphonate group. In spite of this, the proton conductivity of the ordered pNeh-b-pNpm copolymers ranged from 0.002 to 0.008 S/cm. We demonstrate that proton conductivity is maximized in high molecular weight, symmetric pNeh-b-pNpm copolymers. PMID:27134312

  10. Solubilization of a homopolymer in a block copolymer

    SciTech Connect

    Jeon, K.J.; Roe, R.J. . Dept of Materials Science and Engineering)

    1994-04-25

    Blends containing styrene-butadiene diblock copolymer (50 wt % styrene content) and polystyrene of various molecular weights are studied by light scattering, transmission electron microscopy, and small-angle X-ray scattering. The solubility of polystyrene in the styrene domain of the block copolymer is governed by the ratio of the homopolymer molecular weight to the block molecular weight. A finite solubility limit exists when this ratio exceeds [approximately]1. The lamellar repeat period increases linearly as more polystyrene is added, but the butadiene layer thickness remains constant, signifying that the average interfacial area occupied by a copolymer junction point does not change with added polystyrene. This contrasts to the case found by the others that the average area per junction point increases when the added homopolymer is smaller than the block size. Small-angle X-ray scattering patterns obtained from samples having lamellar morphology are described by an idealized model in which layers of styrene and butadiene of randomly varying thicknesses with a diffuse interface between them are stacked parallel.

  11. RAFT polymerization of temperature- and salt-responsive block copolymers as reversible hydrogels

    PubMed Central

    Hemp, Sean T.; Smith, Adam E.; Bunyard, W. Clayton; Rubinstein, Michael H.; Long, Timothy E.

    2016-01-01

    Reversible-addition fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization enabled the synthesis of novel, stimuli-responsive, AB and ABA block copolymers. The B block contained oligo(ethylene glycol) methyl ether methacrylate (OEG) and was permanently hydrophilic in the conditions examined. The A block consisted of diethylene glycol methyl ether methacrylate (DEG) and [2-(methacryloyloxy)ethyl]trimethylammonium chloride (TMA). The A block displayed both salt- and temperature-response with lower critical solution temperatures (LCSTs) dependent on the molar content of TMA and the presence of salt. Higher TMA content in the AB diblock copolymers increased the critical micelle temperatures (CMT) in HPLC-grade water due to an increased hydrophilicity of the A block. Upon addition of 0.9 wt% NaCl, the CMTs of poly(OEG-b-DEG95TMA5) decreased from 50 °C to 36 °C due to screening of electrostatic repulsion between the TMA units. ABA triblock copolymers displayed excellent hydrogel properties with salt- and temperature-dependent gel points. TMA incorporation in the A block increased the gel points for all triblock copolymers, and salt-response increased with higher TMA composition in the A block. For example, poly(DEG98TMA2-b-OEG-b-DEG98TMA2) formed a hydrogel at 40 °C in HPLC-grade water and 26 °C in 0.9 wt% NaCl aqueous solution. These salt- and temperature-responsive AB diblock and ABA triblock copolymers find applications as drug delivery vehicles, adhesives, and hydrogels. PMID:27041771

  12. Continuous poly(2-oxazoline) triblock copolymer synthesis in a microfluidic reactor cascade.

    PubMed

    Baeten, Evelien; Verbraeken, Bart; Hoogenboom, Richard; Junkers, Thomas

    2015-07-25

    Cationic ring-opening polymerizations of 2-oxazolines were investigated in continuous microflow reactors. Fast homopolymerizations of 2-ethyl-2-oxazoline (EtOx) and 2-n-propyl-2-oxazoline (nPropOx) were carried out up to 180 °C, yielding well-controlled polymers. Also well-defined diblock and triblock copolymers were produced in a microfluidic reactor cascade, demonstrating the high value of microflow synthesis for the built-up of advanced poly(2-oxazoline)-based polymers. PMID:26104687

  13. Non-aqueous emulsions stabilized by block copolymers: application to liquid disinfectant-filled elastomeric films.

    PubMed

    Riess, Gérard; Cheymol, André; Hoerner, Pierre; Krikorian, Raffi

    2004-05-20

    The emulsifying and stabilization efficiency of polybutadiene-b-poly(ethylene oxide) and poly(ter butylstyrene)-poly(ethylene oxide) diblock copolymers is examined in non-aqueous emulsions. These emulsions are formed by a dispersion of polyethylene glycol mixed with a cationic surfactant acting as a biocide, in a continuous phase of a thermoplastic elastomer (SEBS) dissolved in methylcyclohexane. Emulsions with controlled droplet size and excellent stability could be obtained, which by solvent evaporation lead to elastomeric films containing droplets of confined disinfecting liquids. PMID:15072927

  14. Protein based Block Copolymers

    PubMed Central

    Rabotyagova, Olena S.; Cebe, Peggy; Kaplan, David L.

    2011-01-01

    Advances in genetic engineering have led to the synthesis of protein-based block copolymers with control of chemistry and molecular weight, resulting in unique physical and biological properties. The benefits from incorporating peptide blocks into copolymer designs arise from the fundamental properties of proteins to adopt ordered conformations and to undergo self-assembly, providing control over structure formation at various length scales when compared to conventional block copolymers. This review covers the synthesis, structure, assembly, properties, and applications of protein-based block copolymers. PMID:21235251

  15. Reflectivity studies on adsorbed block copolymers under shear

    SciTech Connect

    Smith, G.S.; Wages, S.; Baker, S.M.; Toprakcioglu, C.; Hadziioannou, G.

    1994-12-01

    The authors report neutron reflectivity data on (poly)styrene-(poly)ethylene oxide (PS-PEO) diblock copolymers adsorbed onto quartz from the selective solvent cyclohexane (a non-solvent for PEO and a poor solvent for PS). The PEO ``anchor block`` adsorbs strongly to form a thin layer on the quartz substrate, while the deuterated PS chains dangle into the solvent. They find that under static conditions the density profile of the PS block in a poor solvent can be well described by a Schultz function which is indicative of a polymer ``mushroom.`` Furthermore, they have studied the same system under shear at shear rates from 0--400s{sup {minus}1}. They find that there is a dramatic increase in the thickness of the PS layer under shear in cyclohexane and that the relaxation time from the shear-on profile back to the static profile is on the order of several days.

  16. Chirality in block copolymer melts: mesoscopic helicity from intersegment twist.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Wei; Russell, Thomas P; Grason, Gregory M

    2013-02-01

    We study the effects of chirality at the segment scale on the thermodynamics of block copolymer melts using self-consistent field theory. In linear diblock melts where segments of one block prefer a twisted, or cholesteric, texture, we show that melt assembly is critically sensitive to the ratio of random coil size to the preferred pitch of cholesteric twist. For weakly chiral melts (large pitch), mesophases remain achiral, while below a critical value of pitch, two mesoscopically chiral phases are stable: an undulated lamellar phase and a phase of hexagonally ordered helices. We show that the nonlinear sensitivity of mesoscale chiral order to preferred pitch derives specifically from the geometric and thermodynamic coupling of the helical mesodomain shape to the twisted packing of chiral segments within the core, giving rise to a second-order cylinder-to-helix transition. PMID:23414052

  17. pH-responsive aggregates from double hydrophilic block copolymers carrying zwitterionic groups. Encapsulation of antiparasitic compounds for the treatment of leishmaniasis.

    PubMed

    Karanikolopoulos, Nikos; Pitsikalis, Marinos; Hadjichristidis, Nikos; Georgikopoulou, Kalliopi; Calogeropoulou, Theodora; Dunlap, John R

    2007-04-10

    A series of well-defined poly[(ethylene oxide)-b-2-(dimethylamino)ethyl methacrylate] (PEO-b-PDMAEMA) diblock copolymers were synthesized by atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) techniques. Post-polymerization reactions were performed to transform a portion of the tertiary amine groups of the PDMAEpsilonMA into phosphorozwitterions. The aggregation behavior of the prepared zwitterionic block copolymers was investigated by static and dynamic light scattering techniques at 25 and 37 degrees C, in weakly basic and acidic aqueous solutions. Antiparasitic drugs used for the treatment of Leishmania were incorporated into the copolymer aggregates. The effect of the solution pH, the zwitterion content, temperature, and the quantity of the incorporated drug on the aggregation behavior of the copolymers was tested. PMID:17362035

  18. Rapid thermal processing of self-assembling block copolymer thin films on flat surfaces and topographically defined patterns

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Perego, Michele; Ferrarese Lupi, Federico; Giammaria, Tommaso J.; Seguini, Gabriele; Gianotti, Valentina; Antonioli, Diego; Sparnacci, Katia; Laus, Michele; Enrico, Emanuele; de Leo, Natascia; Boarino, Luca; Ober, Christopher K.

    2014-03-01

    Self-assembling block copolymers generate nanostructured patterns, which are potentially useful for a wide range of applications. However, their technological implementation is prevented by the very long time required to drive the process. In this contribution, we demonstrate the capability to control the morphology of the self-assembling process of cylinder forming PS-b-PMMA diblock copolymer (DBC) thin films deposited on un-patterned and topographically patterned surfaces by means of a Rapid Thermal Processing (RTP) machine. Highly ordered patterns were obtained on flat surfaces for perpendicular-oriented cylindrical PS-b-PMMA block copolymers in less than 60 s. The BCs morphology evolution within topographically defined structures was systematically investigated as well. Irrespective of the surface neutralization, an irreversible orientational flipping of the BCP microdomains inside the trenches was observed. This effect was attributed to de-swelling of the polymeric film as a consequence of a progressive desorption of the solvent retained inside the film.

  19. Investigation of the colloidal Cr2O3 removal possibilities from aqueous solution using the ionic polyamino acid block copolymers.

    PubMed

    Ostolska, Iwona; Wiśniewska, Małgorzata

    2015-06-15

    Disposal of the environmentally dangerous metal oxide suspensions from the waste water is an essential problem. The polymers adsorption can be one of the most effective and suitable methods. In the presented paper the ionic diblock copolymers impact on the Cr2O3 suspensions was investigated. The copolymer adsorption layers structure was determined on the basis of the adsorption and electrokinetic (surface charge density and zeta potential) tests. The polymers adsorption amount was measured using the static method from aqueous solutions. Additionally, the application of the turbidimetric method enabled determination of the interactions between the system constituents. Analysis of this data allows the estimation of the most probable stabilization (or destabilization) mechanism of the Cr2O3 suspensions in the presence of the studied macromolecular compounds. Hence, the Cr2O3 suspensions are unstable in the presence of the anionic copolymer at pH 3 and the cationic one in the alkaline medium. PMID:25746566

  20. The effect of block-copolymer structures on the polymeric liquid-liquid interface: Molecular Dynamic Study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ryu, Jiho; Lee, Won Bo; Kim, Bumjoon

    2014-03-01

    The change of free energy caused by different morphology of surfactants (block- and grafted-copolymers) in the biphasic system, is investigated by molecular dynamic simulations. We studied two different structures of surfactants. Type 1 is a diblock-copolymer surfactant composed with 60 monomers(30 A beads and 30 B beads). Type 2 is a grafted-copolymer surfactant of which two side chains composed of, respectively, 15 B monomers, are attached to main back bone chain composed of 30 A monomers. All simulations were performed in the NVT ensemble at 373K. Free energy are computed by thermodynamic integration from the coupled state to the uncoupled state where the surfactant does not interact with the biphasic system. In addition, we discuss various effects such as stiffness of polymers. Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Sogang University, Seoul, South Korea, Corresponding author.

  1. Tunable Morphologies from Charged Block Copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    Goswami, Monojoy; Sumpter, Bobby G; Mays, Jimmy; Messman, Jamie M

    2010-01-01

    The bulk morphologies formed by a new class of charged block copolymers, 75 vol % fluorinated polyisoprene (FPI) 25 vol% sulfonated polystyrene (PSS) with 50% sulfonation, are characterized, and the fundamental underlying forces that promote the self-assembly processes are elucidated. The results show how the bulk morphologies are substantially different from their uncharged diblock counterparts (PS-PI) and also how morphology can be tuned with volume fraction of the charged block and the casting solvent. A physical understanding based on the underlying strong electrostatic interactions between the charged block and counterions is obtained using Monte Carlo (MC) and Molecular Dynamics (MD) simulations. The 75/25 FPI-PSS shows hexagonal morphologies with the minority blocks (PSS) forming the continuous phase due to charge percolation and the FPI blocks arranged in hexagonal cylinders. Some long-range order can be sustained even if lipophobicity is increased (addition of water), albeit with lower dimensional structures. However, thermal annealing provides sufficient energy to disrupt the percolated charges and promotes aggregation of ionic sites which leads to a disordered system. Diverse and atypical morphologies are readily accessible by simply changing the number distribution of the charges on PSS block.

  2. Dual modes of self-assembly in superstrongly segregated bicomponent triblock copolymer melts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Woloszczuk, Sebastian; Mineart, Kenneth P.; Spontak, Richard J.; Banaszak, Michal

    2015-01-01

    While A B C triblock copolymers are known to form a plethora of dual-mode (i.e., order-on-order) nanostructures, bicomponent A B A triblock copolymers normally self-assemble into single morphologies at thermodynamic incompatibility levels up to the strong-segregation regime. In this study, we employ on-lattice Monte Carlo simulations to examine the phase behavior of molecularly asymmetric A1B A2 copolymers possessing chemically identical endblocks differing significantly in length. In the limit of superstrong segregation, interstitial micelles composed of the minority A2 endblock are observed to arrange into two-dimensional hexagonal arrays along the midplane of B -rich lamellae in compositionally symmetric (50 :50 A :B ) copolymers. Simulations performed here establish the coupled molecular-asymmetry and incompatibility conditions under which such micelles form, as well as the temperature dependence of their aggregation number. Beyond an optimal length of the A2 endblock, the propensity for interstitial micelles to develop decreases, and the likelihood for colocation of both endblocks in the A1-rich lamellae increases. Interestingly, the strong-segregation theory of Semenov developed to explain the formation of free micelles by diblock copolymers accurately predicts the onset of interstitial micelles confined at nanoscale dimensions between parallel lamellae.

  3. Block copolymer modified surfaces for conjugation of biomacromolecules with control of quantity and activity.

    PubMed

    Li, Xin; Wang, Mengmeng; Wang, Lei; Shi, Xiujuan; Xu, Yajun; Song, Bo; Chen, Hong

    2013-01-29

    Polymer brush layers based on block copolymers of poly(oligo(ethylene glycol) methacrylate) (POEGMA) and poly(glycidyl methacrylate) (PGMA) were formed on silicon wafers by activators generated by electron transfer atom transfer radical polymerization (AGET ATRP). Different types of biomolecule can be conjugated to these brush layers by reaction of PGMA epoxide groups with amino groups in the biomolecule, while POEGMA, which resists nonspecific protein adsorption, provides an antifouling environment. Surfaces were characterized by water contact angle, ellipsometry, and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) to confirm the modification reactions. Phase segregation of the copolymer blocks in the layers was observed by AFM. The effect of surface properties on protein conjugation was investigated using radiolabeling methods. It was shown that surfaces with POEGMA layers were protein resistant, while the quantity of protein conjugated to the diblock copolymer modified surfaces increased with increasing PGMA layer thickness. The activity of lysozyme conjugated on the surface could also be controlled by varying the thickness of the copolymer layer. When biotin was conjugated to the block copolymer grafts, the surface remained resistant to nonspecific protein adsorption but showed specific binding of avidin. These properties, that is, well-controlled quantity and activity of conjugated biomolecules and specificity of interaction with target biomolecules may be exploited for the improvement of signal-to-noise ratio in sensor applications. More generally, such surfaces may be useful as biological recognition elements of high specificity for functional biomaterials. PMID:23265296

  4. Silicone/Acrylate Copolymers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dennis, W. E.

    1982-01-01

    Two-step process forms silicone/acrylate copolymers. Resulting acrylate functional fluid is reacted with other ingredients to produce copolymer. Films of polymer were formed by simply pouring or spraying mixture and allowing solvent to evaporate. Films showed good weatherability. Durable, clear polymer films protect photovoltaic cells.

  5. Confinement of block copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    1995-12-31

    The following were studied: confinement of block copolymers, free surface confinement, effects of substrate interactions, random copolymers at homopolymer interfaces, phase separation in thin film polymer mixtures, buffing of polymer surfaces, and near edge x-ray absorption fine structure spectroscopy.

  6. Nano-ordered surface morphologies by stereocomplexation of the enantiomeric polylactide chains: specific interactions of surface-immobilized poly(D-lactide) and poly(ethylene glycol)-poly(L-lactide) block copolymers.

    PubMed

    Nakajima, Maho; Nakajima, Hajime; Fujiwara, Tomoko; Kimura, Yoshiharu; Sasaki, Sono

    2014-11-25

    Both AB diblock and ABA triblock copolymers consisting of poly(L-lactide) (PLLA: A) and poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG: B) were deposited on a silicon surface on which poly(D-lactide) (PDLA) had been preimmobilized. The deposit of the diblock copolymer (PLLA-PEG) formed band structures similar to those observed when the same copolymer was directly deposited on the silicon surface. In contrast, the deposit of the triblock copolymer (PLLA-PEG-PLLA) formed many particulates scattering over the surface. When the PLLA-PEG deposit was subjected to water-soaking, the original band morphology was completely replaced by the particulate morphology that was identical to that of the PLLA-PEG-PLLA deposit. Their FT-IR analyses revealed that both copolymers had been bound through the stereocomplex (sc) formation between the preimmobilized PDLA chains and the PLLA blocks of the copolymers. Grazing-incidence small-angle X-ray scattering (GISAXS) also supported these surface morphologies. It was therefore evident that hydrophilic PEG chains can be immobilized on the PDLA-preimmobilized surface by the sc formation. PMID:25365934

  7. Computational Investigation of Block Copolymer Surfactants for Stabilizing Fluctuation-Induced Polymeric Microemulsions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Delaney, Kris; Fredrickson, Glenn

    2013-03-01

    High molecular weight diblock copolymers introduced into a blend of immiscible homopolymers can act as a surfactant to suppress macroscopic two-fluid phase separation. With variation of block copolymer composition, the crossover between low-temperature ordering into microphase or macrophase separated states is marked by a mean-field isotropic Lifshitz multi-critical point. Strong fluctuations close to the Lifshitz point are observed to suppress the low-temperature ordering; a microemulsion state emerges, with large, co-continuous domains of segregated fluid lacking any long-range order. We study this phenomenon with fully fluctuating field-theoretic simulations based on complex Langevin sampling, and we attempt to design new block polymer surfactants that can produce the microemulsion state with a wider composition tolerance.

  8. Droplet synthesis of well-defined block copolymers using solvent-resistant microfluidic device.

    PubMed

    Hoang, Phan Huy; Nguyen, Chi Thanh; Perumal, Jayakumar; Kim, Dong-Pyo

    2011-01-21

    Well-defined diblock copolymers were synthesized via an exothermic RAFT route by a droplet microfluidic process using a solvent-resistant and thermally stable fluoropolymer microreactor fabricated by a non-lithographic embedded template method. The resulting polymers were compared to products obtained from continuous flow capillary reactor and conventional bulk synthesis. The droplet based microreactor demonstrated superior molecular weight distribution control by synthesizing a higher molecular weight product with higher conversion and narrow polydispersity in a much shorter reaction time. The high quality of the as-synthesized block copolymer PMMA-b-PS led to a generation of micelles with a narrow size distribution that could be used as a template for well-ordered mesoporous silica with regular frameworks and high surface areas. PMID:21072416

  9. A Simple Route to Highly Oriented and Ordered Nanoporous Block Copolymer Templates

    SciTech Connect

    Park,S.; Wang, J.; Kim, B.; Xu, J.; Russell, T.

    2008-01-01

    Controlling the orientation and lateral ordering of the block copolymer microdomains is essential to their use as templates and scaffolds for the fabrication of nanostructured materials. In addition, a process must be robust, simple to implement, and rapid, and should not introduce disruptive processing steps that would impede their use. Here, we describe thin films of poly(styrene-b-4-vinylpyridine) (PS-b-P4VP) diblock copolymers, spin-coated from mixed solvents that show highly oriented, cylindrical microdomains with a high degree of order on a wide range of substrates, including silicon oxide, polystyrene, germanium, polyimide, and poly(butylene terephthalate). In addition, the preferential solvation of the P4VP block with an alcohol caused a surface reconstruction that resulted in the formation of a nanoporous film upon drying. The evaporation of gold onto the reconstructed films produced thermally stable and reactive ion etching resistant films.

  10. Surface micellization of poly(2-oxazoline)s based copolymers containing a crystallizable block.

    PubMed

    Fustin, Charles-André; Lefèvre, Nathalie; Hoogenboom, Richard; Schubert, Ulrich S; Gohy, Jean-François

    2009-04-01

    The micellization on surfaces of copoly(2-oxazoline) diblock copolymers consisting of a crystallizable poly(2-nonyl-2-oxazoline) (pNonOx) block linked to a poly(2-ethyl-2-oxazoline) (pEtOx) block is investigated. Those micelles are not pre-existing in the initial ethanol solution but are formed during the spin-coating process by the evaporation of the solvent inducing the precipitation of the less soluble pNonOx block. The morphology and size of the surface micelles vary according to the pNonOx molar fraction in the copolymers. Reorganization of the micelles and evolution of the surface energies after a thermal annealing are also studied. PMID:19128808

  11. Effective repair of traumatically injured spinal cord by nanoscale block copolymer micelles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shi, Yunzhou; Kim, Sungwon; Huff, Terry B.; Borgens, Richard B.; Park, Kinam; Shi, Riyi; Cheng, Ji-Xin

    2010-01-01

    Spinal cord injury results in immediate disruption of neuronal membranes, followed by extensive secondary neurodegenerative processes. A key approach for repairing injured spinal cord is to seal the damaged membranes at an early stage. Here, we show that axonal membranes injured by compression can be effectively repaired using self-assembled monomethoxy poly(ethylene glycol)-poly(D,L-lactic acid) di-block copolymer micelles. Injured spinal tissue incubated with micelles (60 nm diameter) showed rapid restoration of compound action potential and reduced calcium influx into axons for micelle concentrations much lower than the concentrations of polyethylene glycol, a known sealing agent for early-stage spinal cord injury. Intravenously injected micelles effectively recovered locomotor function and reduced the volume and inflammatory response of the lesion in injured rats, without any adverse effects. Our results show that copolymer micelles can interrupt the spread of primary spinal cord injury damage with minimal toxicity.

  12. The Tricontinuous 3ths(5) Phase: A New Morphology in Copolymer Melts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fischer, Michael; de Campo, Liliana; Kirkensgaard, Jacob; Hyde, Stephen; Schroeder-Turk, Gerd

    2015-03-01

    Self-assembly remains one of the most efficient routes to the formation of ordered nanostructures, including the double gyroid network phase in diblock copolymers based on two intergrown network domains. This talk demonstrates the use of self-consistent field theory to show that a tricontinuous structure with monoclinic symmetry, called 3ths(5), based on the intergrowth of three distorted ths nets, is an equilibrium phase of triblock star-copolymer melts when an extended molecular core is introduced. The introduction of the core enhances the role of chain stretching by enforcing larger structural length scales, thus destabilizing the hexagonal columnar phase in favor of morphologies with less packing frustration. This study further demonstrates that the introduction of molecular cores is a general concept for tuning the relative importance of entropic and enthalpic free energy contributions, hence providing a tool to stabilize an extended repertoire of self-assembled nanostructured materials.

  13. Connecting Molecular Dynamics Simulations and Fluids Density Functional Theory of Block Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hall, Lisa

    Increased understanding and precise control over the nanoscale structure and dynamics of microphase separated block copolymers would advance development of mechanically robust but conductive materials for battery electrolytes, among other applications. Both coarse-grained molecular dynamics (MD) simulations and fluids (classical) density functional theory (fDFT) can capture the microphase separation of block copolymers, using similar monomer-based chain models and including local packing effects. Equilibrium free energies of various microphases are readily accessible from fDFT, which allows us to efficiently determine the equilibrium nanostructure over a large parameter space. Meanwhile, MD allows us to visualize specific polymer conformations in 3D over time and to calculate dynamic properties. The fDFT density profiles are used to initialize the MD simulations; this ensures the MD proceeds in the appropriate microphase separated state rather than in a metastable structure (useful especially for nonlamellar structures). The simulations equilibrate more quickly than simulations initialized with a random state, which is significant especially for long chains. We apply these methods to study the interfacial behavior and microphase separated structure of diblock and tapered block copolymers. Tapered copolymers consist of pure A and B monomer blocks on the ends separated by a tapered region that smoothly varies from A to B (or from B to A for an inverse taper). Intuitively, tapering increases the segregation strength required for the material to microphase separate and increases the width of the interfacial region. Increasing normal taper length yields a lower domain spacing and increased polymer mobility, while larger inverse tapers correspond to even lower domain spacing but decreased mobility. Thus the changes in dynamics with tapering cannot be explained by mapping to a diblock system at an adjusted effective segregation strength. This material is based upon work

  14. Widely Tunable Morphologies in Block Copolymer Thin Films Through Solvent Vapor Annealing Using Mixtures of Selective Solvents

    PubMed Central

    Chavis, Michelle A.; Smilgies, Detlef-M.; Wiesner, Ulrich B.; Ober, Christopher K.

    2015-01-01

    Thin films of block copolymers are extremely attractive for nanofabrication because of their ability to form uniform and periodic nanoscale structures by microphase separation. One shortcoming of this approach is that to date the design of a desired equilibrium structure requires synthesis of a block copolymer de novo within the corresponding volume ratio of the blocks. In this work, we investigated solvent vapor annealing in supported thin films of poly(2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate)-block-poly(methyl methacrylate) [PHEMA-b-PMMA] by means of grazing incidence small angle X–ray scattering (GISAXS). A spin-coated thin film of lamellar block copolymer was solvent vapor annealed to induce microphase separation and improve the long-range order of the self-assembled pattern. Annealing in a mixture of solvent vapors using a controlled volume ratio of solvents (methanol, MeOH, and tetrahydrofuran, THF), which are chosen to be preferential for each block, enabled selective formation of ordered lamellae, gyroid, hexagonal or spherical morphologies from a single block copolymer with a fixed volume fraction. The selected microstructure was then kinetically trapped in the dry film by rapid drying. To our knowledge, this paper describes the first reported case where in-situ methods are used to study the transition of block copolymer films from one initial disordered morphology to four different ordered morphologies, covering much of the theoretical diblock copolymer phase diagram. PMID:26819574

  15. Thermoresponsive diblock glycopolymer by RAFT polymerization for lectin recognition.

    PubMed

    Sun, Kan; Xu, Muru; Zhou, Kaichun; Nie, Huali; Quan, Jing; Zhu, Limin

    2016-11-01

    A thermoresponsive double-hydrophilic diblock glycopolymer, poly(diethyl- eneglycol methacrylate)-block-poly(6-O-vinyladipoyl-d-glucose) (PDEGMA-b-POVAG), was successfully prepared by a combination of enzymatic synthesis and reversible addition-fragment chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization protocols using poly(diethyl- eneglycol methacrylate) (PDEGMA) as macro-RAFT agent. The block glycopolymer was characterized by (1)H NMR and GPC. UV-vis, DLS and TEM studies revealed that the glycopolymer PDEGMA-b-POVAG was thermoresponsive with LCST at 31.0°C, and was able to self-assemble into spherical micelles of various sizes in aqueous solution. The glucose pendants in the glycopolymer could interact with the lectin Concanavalin A (Con A), the average hydrodynamic diameters of glycopolymer micelles increased to 170nm from 110nm after recognizing Con A. The diblock glycopolymer micelles have excellent biocompatibility with pig iliac endothelial cells, as measured using the MTT assay, but micelles loaded with Con A could be used to induce apoptosis in human hepatoma SMMC-7721 cells. PMID:27524009

  16. Phase diagram of selectively cross-linked block copolymers shows chemically microstructured gel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    von der Heydt, Alice; Zippelius, Annette

    2015-02-01

    We study analytically the intricate phase behavior of cross-linked AB diblock copolymer melts, which can undergo two main phase transitions due to quenched random constraints. Gelation, i.e., spatially random localisation of polymers forming a system-spanning cluster, is driven by increasing the number parameter μ of irreversible, type-selective cross-links between random pairs of A blocks. Self-assembly into a periodic pattern of A/B-rich microdomains (microphase separation) is controlled by the AB incompatibility χ inversely proportional to temperature. Our model aims to capture the system's essential microscopic features, including an ensemble of random networks that reflects spatial correlations at the instant of cross-linking. We identify suitable order parameters and derive a free-energy functional in the spirit of Landau theory that allows us to trace a phase diagram in the plane of μ and χ. Selective cross-links promote microphase separation at higher critical temperatures than in uncross-linked diblock copolymer melts. Microphase separation in the liquid state facilitates gelation, giving rise to a novel gel state whose chemical composition density mirrors the periodic AB pattern.

  17. Scaling Aspects of Block Co-Polymer Adsorption on Curved Surfaces from Nonselective Solvents

    PubMed Central

    Hershkovits, Eli; Tannenbaum, Allen; Tannenbaum, Rina

    2009-01-01

    In this paper, we have developed a geometric-based scaling model that describes the adsorption of diblock copolymer chains from good solvents and θ-solvents onto reactive surfaces of varying curvatures. To evaluate the impact of particle size on the adsorption process, we probed the adsorption of poly(styrene-bmethymethacrylate) (PS-PMMA) diblock copolymers from solvents with different degrees of selectivity on aluminum oxide (Al2O3) surfaces belonging to particles of different sizes. When the adsorbed PMMA layer is dense enough (in the case of a θ-solvent for the PMMA block), our results show good correlation between the theory and experimental results, pointing to the formation of a PMMA adsorption layer and a brushlike PS layer. Conversely, when adsorption occurs from a nonpreferential solvent, particularly on particles with high curvature, the PMMA adsorption layer at the surface becomes less dense and the grafted PS moiety exhibits a transitional morphology consisting of several layers of increasingly sparsely spaced blobs. PMID:18399678

  18. Aggregation of poly(acrylic acid)-containing elastin-mimetic copolymers

    PubMed Central

    Paik, Bradford A.; Blanco, Marco A.; Jia, Xinqiao; Roberts, Christopher J.; Kiick, Kristi L.

    2015-01-01

    Polymer-peptide conjugates were produced via the copper-catalyzed alkyne-azide cycloaddition of poly(tert butyl acrylate) (PtBA) and elastin-like peptides. An azide-functionalized polymer was produced via atom-transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) followed by conversion of bromine end groups to azide groups. Subsequent reaction of the polymer with a bis-alkyne-functionalized, elastin-like peptide proceeded with high efficiency, yielding di- and tri-block conjugates, which after deprotection, yielded poly(acrylic acid) (PAA)-based diblock and triblock copolymers. These conjugates were solubilized in dimethyl formamide, and titration of phosphate buffered saline (PBS) induced aggregation. The presence of polydisperse spherical aggregates was confirmed by dynamic light scattering and transmission electron microscopy. Additionally, a coarse-grained molecular model was designed to reasonably capture inter- and intramolecular interactions for the conjugates and its precursors. This model was used to assess the effect of the different interacting molecular forces on the conformational thermodynamic stability of the copolymers. Our results indicated that the PAA’s ability to hydrogen-bond with both itself and the peptide is the main interaction for stabilizing the diblocks and triblocks and driving their self-assembly, while interactions between peptides are suggested to play only a minor role on the conformational and thermodynamic stability of the conjugates. PMID:25611563

  19. Phase diagram of selectively cross-linked block copolymers shows chemically microstructured gel.

    PubMed

    von der Heydt, Alice; Zippelius, Annette

    2015-02-01

    We study analytically the intricate phase behavior of cross-linked AB diblock copolymer melts, which can undergo two main phase transitions due to quenched random constraints. Gelation, i.e., spatially random localisation of polymers forming a system-spanning cluster, is driven by increasing the number parameter μ of irreversible, type-selective cross-links between random pairs of A blocks. Self-assembly into a periodic pattern of A/B-rich microdomains (microphase separation) is controlled by the AB incompatibility χ inversely proportional to temperature. Our model aims to capture the system's essential microscopic features, including an ensemble of random networks that reflects spatial correlations at the instant of cross-linking. We identify suitable order parameters and derive a free-energy functional in the spirit of Landau theory that allows us to trace a phase diagram in the plane of μ and χ. Selective cross-links promote microphase separation at higher critical temperatures than in uncross-linked diblock copolymer melts. Microphase separation in the liquid state facilitates gelation, giving rise to a novel gel state whose chemical composition density mirrors the periodic AB pattern. PMID:25662662

  20. Approaching a flat boundary with a block copolymer coated emulsion drop: late stage drainage dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rozairo, Damith; Croll, Andrew

    Understanding the dynamics of the formation and drainage of the thin fluid film that becomes trapped by a deformable droplet as it approaches another object is crucial to the advancement of many industrial and biomedical applications. Adding amphiphilic diblock copolymers, which are becoming more commonly used in drug delivery and oil recovery, only add to the complexity. Despite their increased use, little is known about how long polymer chains fill an emulsion drop's interface or how the molecules influence hydrodynamic processes. We study the drainage dynamics of a thin water film trapped between mica and a diblock copolymer saturated oil droplet. Specifically, we examine several different polystyrene-b-poly(ethylene oxide) (PS-PEO) molecules self-assembled at a toluene-water interface using laser scanning confocal microscopy. Our experiments reveal that the molecular details of the polymer chains deeply influence the drainage times, indicating that they are not acting as a 'simple' surfactant. The presence of the chains creates a much slower dynamic as fluid is forced to drain through an effective polymer brush, the brush itself determined by chain packing at the interface. We present a simple model which accounts for the basic physics of the interface.

  1. Micelles, Lamellaes and Connected Bilayer Membranes in Block Copolymer Melts, Blends and Solutions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mortensen, Kell

    1997-03-01

    Block copolymers of poly(ethylene oxide), PEO, and poly(propylene oxide), PPO, provide a unique model system for studies of aqueous systems of amphilic macromolecules, as the amphiphilic character can be changed continuously by changing temperature(K Mortensen, W Brown, B. Nordén , Phys. Rev. Letters 13 2340 (1992)) or pressure(K Mortensen, D Schwahn S Janssen Phys. Rev. Letters 71 1728 (1993)). The structural characteristics of aqueous solutions of the PEO-PPO-PEO copolymers and their self-associated assemblies are reviewed(K Mortensen, J. Phys. Cond. Matter 8 A103 (1996)). It is shown by small-angle neutron scattering that at low temperatures and/or concentration the individual copolymers exist in solution as individual unimers. Depending on molecular design, i.e. size of the individual blocks, various aggregates are formed, including spherical, worm-like and disc-shaped micelles. The spherical micelles provide the basis for liquid-crystalline mesophases of cubic structure. The crystallization can be understood as a simple hard-sphere condensation. Worm- or rod-like micelles may form nematic or hexagonally ordered structures, whereas the discs may condense into lamellar phases. While bi-continuous microemulsions frequently appear in ternary phase diagrams of oil, water and low-molecular surfactants, there has only recently been observations of such phases in binary systems of block copolymers and solvent. The first observation was made in an aqueous solution of a low PEO-content PEO-PPO-PEO triblock copolymer(E Hecht, K Mortensen, H Hoffmann, Macromolecules 28 5465, 1995). More recently, the microemulsion sponge phase has been observed in a system of tri-block copolymers dissolved in homopolymers( JH Laurer, JC Fung, JW Sedat, DA Agard, SD Schmit, J Samseth, K Mortensen, RJ Spontak, Langmuir, submitted) and in a ternary systems of diblock copolymer and homopolymers(FS Bates, WW Maurer, PM Lipic MA Hillmyer, KA Almdal, K Mortensen, TP Lodge Science, submitted).

  2. NEXAFS Depth Profiling of Surface Segregation in Block Copolymer Thin Films

    SciTech Connect

    Krishnan, S.; Paik, M; Ober, C; Martinelli, E; Galli, G; Sohn, K; Kramer, E; Fischer, D

    2010-01-01

    NEXAFS spectroscopy was used to probe the surface composition and under-water surface reconstruction of thin films of comb-like diblock copolymers with cylindrical and spherical microphases. The polymers consisted of a polystyrene block, and a second block prepared from a styrenic monomer grafted with fluoroalkyl-tagged poly(ethylene glycol) side chains. Compositional depth profiling of the microphase separated block copolymer films, in the top 1-3 nm of the film, was performed to understand the role of block copolymer microstructure and self-assembly on surface composition. Using experimentally determined concentration profiles, the surface concentration of phenyl ring carbon atoms was quantified and compared with those of homopolymer and random copolymer controls. The carbon atoms from the relatively high surface energy phenyl groups were depleted or excluded from the surface, in favor of the low surface-energy fluoroalkyl groups. While it is expected that block copolymer surfaces will be completely covered by a wetting lamellar layer of the lower surface energy block, a significant amount of the higher surface energy polystyrene block was found to be present in the surface region of the cylinder-forming block copolymer. Evidently, the spontaneous formation of the cylindrical polystyrene microdomains in the near-surface region compensated for the lowering of the free energy that could have been achieved by completely covering the surfaces with a lamellar layer of the lower surface energy fluorinated block. All surfaces underwent molecular reconstruction after immersion in water. The experimental concentration depth profiles indicated an increased surface depletion of phenyl ring carbon atoms in the water-immersed thin films, due to the tendency of hydrophilic PEG side groups to be present at the polymer-water interface. Such a detailed characterization of the outermost layers of the block copolymer surfaces was possible because of the exceptional depth resolution

  3. Hydrogen-bonded side chain liquid crystalline block copolymer: Molecular design, synthesis, characterization and applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chao, Chi-Yang

    Block copolymers can self-assemble into highly regular, microphase-separated morphologies with dimensions at nanometer length scales. Potential applications such as optical wavelength photonic crystals, templates for nanolithographic patterning, or nanochannels for biomacromolecular separation take advantage of the well-ordered, controlled size microdomains of block copolymers. Side-chain liquid crystalline block copolymers (SCLCBCPs) are drawing increasing attention since the incorporation of liquid crystallinity turns their well-organized microstructures into dynamic functional materials. As a special type of block copolymer, hydrogen-bonded SCLCBCPs are unique, compositionally tunable materials with multiple dynamic functionalities that can readily respond to thermal, electrical and mechanical fields. Hydrogen-bonded SCLCBCPs were synthesized and assembled from host poly(styrene- b-acrylic acid) diblock copolymers with narrow molecular weight distributions as proton donors and guest imidazole functionalized mesogenic moieties as proton acceptors. In these studies non-covalent hydrogen bonding is employed to connect mesogenic side groups to a block copolymer backbone, both for its dynamic character as well as for facile materials preparation. The homogeneity and configuration of the hydrogen-bonded complexes were determined by both the molecular architecture of imidazolyl side groups and the process conditions. A one-dimensional photonic crystal composed of high molecular weight hydrogen-bonded SCLCBCP, with temperature dependent optical wavelength stop bands was successfully produced. The microstructures of hydrogen-bonded complexes could be rapidly aligned in an AC electric field at temperatures below the order-disorder transition but above their glass transitions. Remarkable dipolar properties of the mesogenic groups and thermal dissociation of hydrogen bonds are key elements to fast orientation switching. Studies of a wide range of mesogen and polymer

  4. Structure-directing star-shaped block copolymers: supramolecular vesicles for the delivery of anticancer drugs.

    PubMed

    Yang, Chuan; Liu, Shao Qiong; Venkataraman, Shrinivas; Gao, Shu Jun; Ke, Xiyu; Chia, Xin Tian; Hedrick, James L; Yang, Yi Yan

    2015-06-28

    Amphiphilic polycarbonate/PEG copolymer with a star-like architecture was designed to facilitate a unique supramolecular transformation of micelles to vesicles in aqueous solution for the efficient delivery of anticancer drugs. The star-shaped amphipilic block copolymer was synthesized by initiating the ring-opening polymerization of trimethylene carbonate (TMC) from methyl cholate through a combination of metal-free organo-catalytic living ring-opening polymerization and post-polymerization chain-end derivatization strategies. Subsequently, the self-assembly of the star-like polymer in aqueous solution into nanosized vesicles for anti-cancer drug delivery was studied. DOX was physically encapsulated into vesicles by dialysis and drug loading level was significant (22.5% in weight) for DOX. Importantly, DOX-loaded nanoparticles self-assembled from the star-like copolymer exhibited greater kinetic stability and higher DOX loading capacity than micelles prepared from cholesterol-initiated diblock analogue. The advantageous disparity is believed to be due to the transformation of micelles (diblock copolymer) to vesicles (star-like block copolymer) that possess greater core space for drug loading as well as the ability of such supramolecular structures to encapsulate DOX. DOX-loaded vesicles effectively inhibited the proliferation of 4T1, MDA-MB-231 and BT-474 cells, with IC50 values of 10, 1.5 and 1.0mg/L, respectively. DOX-loaded vesicles injected into 4T1 tumor-bearing mice exhibited enhanced accumulation in tumor tissue due to the enhanced permeation and retention (EPR) effect. Importantly, DOX-loaded vesicles demonstrated greater tumor growth inhibition than free DOX without causing significant body weight loss or cardiotoxicity. The unique ability of the star-like copolymer emanating from the methyl cholate core provided the requisite modification in the block copolymer interfacial curvature to generate vesicles of high loading capacity for DOX with significant

  5. Bismaleimide Copolymer Matrix Resins

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Parker, John A.; Heimbuch, Alvin H.; Hsu, Ming-Ta S.; Chen, Timothy S.

    1987-01-01

    Graphite composites, prepared from 1:1 copolymer of two new bismaleimides based on N,N'-m-phenylene-bis(m-amino-benzamide) structure have mechanical properties superior to those prepared from other bismaleimide-type resins. New heat-resistant composites replace metal in some structural applications. Monomers used to form copolymers with superior mechanical properties prepared by reaction of MMAB with maleic or citraconic anhydride.

  6. Nanowire polarizers by guided self-assembly of block copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roberts, Philip M. S.; Baum, Alexandra; Karamath, James; Evans, Allan; Shibata, Satoshi; Walton, Harry

    2014-01-01

    Wire-grid polarizers (WGPs) are currently limited by their wafer-scale manufacturing methods to sizes of approximately 12 to 18 in. For large-size displays, a new method for the production of large-area WGPs is required. Large-area WGPs were simulated using the finite-difference-time-domain method, and a scaleable method for their production based on a block copolymer (BCP)-nanostructured template was implemented. The nanostructured template is globally aligned through the use of a cylinder-forming liquid crystal (LC) diblock copolymer, which is first aligned on a rubbed polyimide substrate. A surface-relief template is produced using the differential dry etch rates of the cylinder-forming component and LC polymer matrix component of the BCP. The template is metalized to produce a WGP. Polarizers of arbitrary size with polarization efficiency up to 0.6 have been made in close agreement with calculated values for idealized structures. The choice of the cylinder-forming polymer is critical to the degree of alignment of the template, and the thermal stability of the LC polymer matrix is critical to the stability of the template during etching.

  7. Effect of monomer sequences on conformations of copolymers grafted on spherical nanoparticles: A Monte Carlo simulation study

    SciTech Connect

    Seifpour, Arezou; Spicer, Philip; Nair, Nitish; Jayaraman, Arthi

    2010-04-28

    Functionalizing nanoparticles with organic ligands, such as oligomers, polymers, DNA, and proteins, is an attractive way to manipulate the interfacial interactions between the nanoparticles and the medium the particles are placed in, and thus control the nanoparticle assembly. In this paper we have conducted a Monte Carlo simulation study on copolymer grafted spherical nanoparticles to show the tremendous potential of using monomer sequence on the copolymers to tune the grafted chain conformation, and thus the effective interactions between copolymer grafted nanoparticles. We have studied AB copolymers with alternating, multiblock, or diblock sequences, where either A monomers or B monomers have monomer-monomer attractive interactions. Our focus has been to show the nontrivial effect of monomer sequence on the conformations of the grafted copolymers at various particle diameters, grafting densities, copolymer chain lengths, and monomer-monomer interactions in an implicit small molecule solvent. We observe that the monomer sequence, particle diameter, and grafting density dictate whether (a) the grafted chains aggregate to bring attractive monomers from multiple grafted chains together (interchain and intrachain monomer aggregation) if the enthalpy gained by doing so offsets the entropic loss caused by stretching of chains, or (b) each grafted chain folds onto itself to bring its attractive monomers together (only intrachain monomer aggregation) if the entropic loss from interchain aggregation cannot be overcome by the enthalpic gain. For six copolymers of chain length N=24 grafted on a spherical particle of diameter D=4, interchain and intrachain monomer aggregation occurs, and the radius of gyration varies nonmonotonically with increasing blockiness of the monomer sequence. At larger particle diameters the grafted chains transition to purely intrachain monomer aggregation. The radius of gyration varies monotonically with monomer sequence for intrachain monomer

  8. Polymerization-Induced Self-Assembly of Block Copolymer Nano-objects via RAFT Aqueous Dispersion Polymerization

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    In this Perspective, we discuss the recent development of polymerization-induced self-assembly mediated by reversible addition–fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) aqueous dispersion polymerization. This approach has quickly become a powerful and versatile technique for the synthesis of a wide range of bespoke organic diblock copolymer nano-objects of controllable size, morphology, and surface functionality. Given its potential scalability, such environmentally-friendly formulations are expected to offer many potential applications, such as novel Pickering emulsifiers, efficient microencapsulation vehicles, and sterilizable thermo-responsive hydrogels for the cost-effective long-term storage of mammalian cells. PMID:24968281

  9. Polymerization-induced self-assembly of block copolymer nano-objects via RAFT aqueous dispersion polymerization.

    PubMed

    Warren, Nicholas J; Armes, Steven P

    2014-07-23

    In this Perspective, we discuss the recent development of polymerization-induced self-assembly mediated by reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) aqueous dispersion polymerization. This approach has quickly become a powerful and versatile technique for the synthesis of a wide range of bespoke organic diblock copolymer nano-objects of controllable size, morphology, and surface functionality. Given its potential scalability, such environmentally-friendly formulations are expected to offer many potential applications, such as novel Pickering emulsifiers, efficient microencapsulation vehicles, and sterilizable thermo-responsive hydrogels for the cost-effective long-term storage of mammalian cells. PMID:24968281

  10. Synthesis and characterization of biodegradable poly(ethylene glycol)-block-poly(5-benzyloxy-trimethylene carbonate) copolymers for drug delivery.

    PubMed

    Zeng, Faquan; Liu, Jubo; Allen, Christine

    2004-01-01

    Amphiphilic diblock copolymers with various block compositions were synthesized with monomethoxy-terminated poly(ethylene glycol) (MePEG) as the hydrophilic block and poly(5-benzyloxy-trimethylene carbonate) (PBTMC) as the hydrophobic block. When the copolymerization was conducted using MePEG as a macroinitiator and stannous 2-ethylhexanoate (Sn(Oct)2) as a catalyst, the molecular weight of the second block was uncontrollable, and the method only afforded a mixture of homopolymer and copolymer with a broad molecular weight distribution. By contrast, the use of the triethylaluminum-MePEG initiator yielded block copolymers with controllable molecular weight and a more narrow molecular weight distribution than the copolymers obtained using Sn(Oct)2. GPC and 1H NMR studies confirmed that the macroinitiator was consumed and the copolymer composition was as predicted. Two of the newly synthesized MePEG-b-PBTMC copolymers were evaluated in terms of properties primarily relating to their use in micellar drug delivery. MePEG-b-PBTMC micelles with a narrow monomodal size distribution were prepared using a high-pressure extrusion technique. The MePEG-b-PBTMC copolymers were also confirmed to be biodegradable and noncytotoxic. PMID:15360292

  11. Rich Variety of Three-Dimensional Nanostructures Enabled by Geometrically Constraining Star-like Block Copolymers.

    PubMed

    Wang, Chao; Xu, Yuci; Li, Weihua; Lin, Zhiqun

    2016-08-01

    The influence of star-like architecture on phase behavior of star-like block copolymer under cylindrical confinement differs largely from the bulk (i.e., nonconfinement). A set of intriguing self-assembled morphologies and the corresponding phase diagrams of star-like (AB)f diblock copolymers with different numbers of arms f (i.e., f = 3, 9, 15, and 21) in four scenarios (ϕA = 0.3 and V0 > 0; ϕA = 0.3 and V0 < 0; ϕA = 0.7 and V0 > 0; and ϕA = 0.7 and V0 < 0 (where ϕA is the volume fraction of A block) and V0 < 0 and V0 > 0 represent that the pore wall of cylindrical confinement prefers the inner A block (i.e., A-preferential) and B block (i.e., B-preferential), respectively) were for the first time scrutinized by employing the pseudospectral method of self-consistent mean-field theory. Surprisingly, a new nanoscopic phase, that is, perforated-lamellae-on-cylinder (denoted PC), was observed in star-like (AB)3 diblock copolymer at ϕA = 0.3 and V0 > 0. With a further increase in f, a single lamellae (denoted L1) was found to possess a larger phase region. Under the confinement of A-preferential wall (i.e., V0 < 0) at ϕA = 0.3, PC phase became metastable and its free energy increased as f increased. Quite intriguingly, when ϕA = 0.7 and V0 > 0, where an inverted cylinder was formed in bulk, the PC phase became stable, and its free energy decreased as f increased, suggesting the propensity to form PC phase under this condition. Moreover, in stark contrast to the phase transition of C1 → L1 → PC (C1, a single cylindrical microdmain) at ϕA = 0.3 and V0 > 0, when subjected to the A-preferential wall (ϕA = 0.7), a different phase transition sequence (i.e., C1 → PC → L1) was identified due to the formation of a double-layer structure. On the basis of our calculations, the influence of star-like architecture on (AB)f diblock copolymer under the imposed cylindrical confinement, particularly the shift of the phase boundaries as a function of f, was thoroughly

  12. Continuous spin fractionation and characterization by size-exclusion chromatography for styrene-butadiene block copolymers.

    PubMed

    Xiong, Xiaopeng; Eckelt, John; Wolf, Bernhard A; Zhang, Zhengjun; Zhang, Lina

    2006-03-31

    Linear and star-shaped styrene-butadiene block copolymers synthesized by anionic polymerization of butadiene and styrene were fractionated by applying a newly developed large-scale fractionation technique, named continuous spin fractionation (CSF). Their molecular weight and polydispersity index (d=M(w)/M(n)) were measured with size-exclusion chromatography and static light scattering. For the linear triblock copolymer a fractionation via temperature variation turned out to be better suited than the usual isothermal procedure. The star-shaped polymer with the d value of 1.33 was fractionated in two CSF steps to get the targeted sample, which has a considerably more uniform structure and a narrower molecular weight distribution (d=1.11). The corresponding starting linear diblock copolymer was fractionated in one step reducing d from 1.68 to 1.17. With one set of simple laboratory equipment, 1kg polymer can be fractionated per day. Utilizing CSF, for the first time, we fractionated successfully the block copolymers. PMID:16466731

  13. PS-b-PDMS Block Copolymer Thin Film: Pattern Formation and Phase Behavior

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hsieh, I.-Fan; Cheng, Stephen Z. D.; Chen, Feng; Fu, Qiang

    2010-03-01

    Recently, block copolymer thin films are of great interest for their applications in surface patterning, and thin films of diblock copolymers with cylindrical microdomains normal to the surface are more attractive due to the tenability of large aspect ratios of the cylindrical microdomains. Within various kind of block copolymer, PS-b-PDMS is chosen due to an extremely large χ value between PS and PDMS. PS-b-PDMS can be transformed into silicon oxide under UV/O3 exposure, and a layer of silicon oxide with the self-assembled block copolymer patterns can be made. In our work, utilizing PGMEA as solvent and its vapor as spin casting atmosphere, we found an effective approach to obtain the PDMS cylinders oriented normal to the substrate. Furthermore, during benzene solvent annealing, PDMS cylinders' orientation transfers from perpendicular to parallel and then back to perpendicular again. By changing the cylinders orientation alternatively, the lateral order of cylinder packing gradually improved. By investigating this morphology evolution, the mechanism and free energy pathway for PS-b-PDMS thin film morphology transition during solvent annealing can be constructed.

  14. Influence of copolymer architectures on adhesion and compatibilization of polymers at interfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, Lantao

    Adhesion and compatibilization of immiscible homopolymers by a variety of copolymer architectures were studied. The work is arranged into 5 chapters: In Chapter 1, an introduction to recent studies on improvement of adhesion and compatibilization of polymer blends using copolymers was made including the advantages and shortcomings of interfacial reinforcement by a diblock copolymer architecture. Emphasis is on the novel ways to improve adhesion at polymer interfaces by a variety of copolymer architectures, including physical entanglement and chemical modification and chemical bonding. In Chapter 2, a series of Polystyrene-Poly(methyl methacrylate) (PS-PMMA) graft copolymers were introduced to modify the PS and PMMA homopolymer interface and was found to increase the interfacial fracture toughness to a large extent, depending on the detailed architectural variables such as the graft number per chain, the lengths of the backbone and the grafts, and the total molecular weights of the graft copolymers. It was also found that there was an optimal number of grafts per chain which can be interpreted based on the graft length and inter-branch length of the backbone of the copolymer. Effect of in-situ grafting via a chemical reaction between Polystyrene-Poly(vinyl phenol) (PS-PSOH) and oxazoline containing Styrene-Acrylonitril (SAN) was also discussed compared with the physical grafting of a graft copolymer of different structural parameters. In Chapter 3, hydrogen bonding was utilized to toughen the interface between PS and PAA poly(acrylic acid)) or PMMA using a random copolymer architecture of Polystyrene-Poly(vinyl pyridine) (PS-PVP). It was shown that random copolymer architecture is not only economically feasible due to its low cost of producing but also very effective on adhesion because it not only overcomes the issue of micelle formation which is an unavoidable situation in the diblock and graft cases but the enhancement of adhesion is much higher utilizing a H

  15. Morphology phase diagram of ultrathin anatase TiO2 films templated by a single PS-b-PEO block copolymer.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Ya-Jun; Gutmann, Jochen S

    2006-04-12

    Ultrathin TiO2 films showing rich morphologies are prepared on Si(100) substrates using sol-gel chemistry coupled with an amphilic polystyrene-block-poly(ethylene oxide) (PS-b-PEO) diblock copolymer as a structure-directing agent. The block copolymer undergoes a good-poor solvent pair induced phase separation in a mixed solution of 1,4-dioxane, concentrated hydrochloric acid (HCl), and titanium tetraisopropoxide (TTIP). By adjusting the weight fractions of 1,4-dioxane, HCl, and TTIP, inorganic block copolymer composite films containing a variety of different morphologies are obtained. On the basis of the results a ternary phase diagram of the morphologies is mapped. By calcination, anatase TiO2 films are achieved. The morphologies and crystallographic phase of the films are studied with AFM, SEM, and XRD, respectively, and the formation mechanisms of the different morphologies are discussed. PMID:16594703

  16. Order-Disorder Transitions in Cross-Linked Block Copolymer Solids

    SciTech Connect

    Das, J.

    2005-01-12

    With a view toward creating solid block copolymers wherein the order-disorder transition can be accessed many times they investigated the nature of order-disorder transitions in cross-linked diblock copolymer melts using synergistic theory and experiment. A mean-field theory based on a coarse grained free-energy and the Random Phase Approximation (RPA) is developed for the system of interest. The quenched distribution of cross-links is averaged using the replica method. The phase behavior of a particular A-B block copolymer melt with a randomly cross-linked B-Block is determined as a function of the Florry-Huggins interaction parameter ({chi}) and the average number of cross-links per chain N{sub c}. They find for a cross-link density greater than N*{sub c} the B monomers are localized within a region of size {zeta} {approx} (N{sub c} - N*{sub c}){sup -1/2}. The cross-links strongly oppose ordering in the system as {zeta} becomes comparable to the radius of gyration of the block copolymer chain. As such the order-disorder transition temperature T{sub ODT} decreases precipitously when N{sub c} > N*{sub c}. When N{sub c} < N*{sub c}, T{sub ODT} increases weakly with N{sub c}. Experiments were conducted on cross-linked polystyrene-block-polyisoprene copolymer samples wherein the polyisoprene block was selectively cross-linked at a temperature well above the order-disorder transition temperature of the pure block copolymer. Small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) and birefringence measurements on the cross-linked samples are consistent with the theoretical prediction. T{sub ODT} decreases rapidly when the cross-linking density exceeds the critical cross-linking density.

  17. Characterization of predominantly hydrophobic poly(styrene)-poly(ethylene oxide) copolymers at air/water and cyclohexane/water interfaces

    SciTech Connect

    Gragson, D.E.; Jensen, J.M.; Baker, S.M.

    1999-09-14

    Interfacial tension measurements are employed to explore the spreading behavior of predominantly hydrophobic poly(styrene)--poly(ethylene oxide), PS-PEO, diblock copolymers at air/water and cyclohexane/water interfaces. Two copolymers with 7%- and 15.5%-PEO are examined in this study. The former is expected to have a PS block limiting area in air roughly equal to the limiting PEO pancake area, whereas the latter is expected to have a limiting PS block area in air approximately 3 times smaller than the limiting PEO pancake area. At the air/water interface, the 7%-PEO copolymer does not spread well, which is attributed to interference from the hydrophobic PS block. In contrast, the 7%-PEO copolymer spreads well at the cyclohexane/water interface, producing an isotherm with a terminating mean molecular area 3 times smaller than that obtained at the air/water interface. The 15.5%-PEO copolymer spreads well at both the air/water ad cyclohexane/water interfaces due to less interference from the smaller hydrophobic PS block. These observations are compared to compression isotherms, and the results are discussed in terms of the solvating nature of the adjacent cyclohexane phase for the PS block.

  18. Block copolymers for alkaline fuel cell membrane materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Yifan

    Alkaline fuel cells (AFCs) using anion exchange membranes (AEMs) as electrolyte have recently received considerable attention. AFCs offer some advantages over proton exchange membrane fuel cells, including the potential of non-noble metal (e.g. nickel, silver) catalyst on the cathode, which can dramatically lower the fuel cell cost. The main drawback of traditional AFCs is the use of liquid electrolyte (e.g. aqueous potassium hydroxide), which can result in the formation of carbonate precipitates by reaction with carbon dioxide. AEMs with tethered cations can overcome the precipitates formed in traditional AFCs. Our current research focuses on developing different polymer systems (blend, block, grafted, and crosslinked polymers) in order to understand alkaline fuel cell membrane in many aspects and design optimized anion exchange membranes with better alkaline stability, mechanical integrity and ionic conductivity. A number of distinct materials have been produced and characterized. A polymer blend system comprised of poly(vinylbenzyl chloride)-b-polystyrene (PVBC-b-PS) diblock copolymer, prepared by nitroxide mediated polymerization (NMP), with poly(2,6-dimethyl-1,4-phenylene oxide) (PPO) or brominated PPO was studied for conversion into a blend membrane for AEM. The formation of a miscible blend matrix improved mechanical properties while maintaining high ionic conductivity through formation of phase separated ionic domains. Using anionic polymerization, a polyethylene based block copolymer was designed where the polyethylene-based block copolymer formed bicontinuous morphological structures to enhance the hydroxide conductivity (up to 94 mS/cm at 80 °C) while excellent mechanical properties (strain up to 205%) of the polyethylene block copolymer membrane was observed. A polymer system was designed and characterized with monomethoxy polyethylene glycol (mPEG) as a hydrophilic polymer grafted through substitution of pendent benzyl chloride groups of a PVBC

  19. Bactericidal block copolymer micelles.

    PubMed

    Vyhnalkova, Renata; Eisenberg, Adi; van de Ven, Theo

    2011-05-12

    Block copolymer micelles with bactericidal properties were designed to deactivate pathogens such as E. coli bacteria. The micelles of PS-b-PAA and PS-b-P4VP block copolymers were loaded with biocides TCMTB or TCN up to 20 or 30 wt.-%, depending on the type of antibacterial agent. Bacteria were exposed to loaded micelles and bacterial deactivation was evaluated. The micelles loaded with TCN are bactericidal; bacteria are killed in less than two minutes of exposure. The most likely interpretation of the data is that the biocide is transferred to the bacteria by repeated micelle/bacteria contacts, and not via the solution. PMID:21275041

  20. Block coordination copolymers

    DOEpatents

    Koh, Kyoung Moo; Wong-Foy, Antek G.; Matzger, Adam J.; Benin, Annabelle I.; Willis, Richard R.

    2012-12-04

    The present invention provides compositions of crystalline coordination copolymers wherein multiple organic molecules are assembled to produce porous framework materials with layered or core-shell structures. These materials are synthesized by sequential growth techniques such as the seed growth technique. In addition, the invention provides a simple procedure for controlling functionality.