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Sample records for diblock copolymer self-assembly

  1. Controlled self-assembly in homopolymer and diblock copolymer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhuang, Lei

    This thesis work studies the process, mechanism and control of self-assembly in homopolymers and diblock copolymers. These studies are aimed at finding novel patterning methods that can lead to low cost lithography technologies capable of creating micrometer to nanometer patterns over a large area. We first present a new phenomenon called Lithographically-Induced Self-Assembly (LISA) that can create ordered arrays of pillars in a homopolymer film with a mask placed close to its surface. We demonstrate that the shape, size and morphology of the ordered pillar arrays can be controlled with a patterned mask. A model is developed based on the instability in a fluidic film induced by the Coulomb force from charge accumulation in the polymer film and the mask. Experimental results are shown to support the model. We also investigate the behavior of defects that destroy the ordering of the LISA array and propose ways to prevent them. This self-assembly phenomenon is used as a patterning technique to define the active area of an organic light emitting diode (OLED). The device shows significantly improved lifetime due to the restriction of defect growth. Another patterning technology that is closely related to LISA, Lithographically-Induced Self-Construction (LISC), is also introduced. LISC can form mesas of polymer from the initial thin film and they inherit the shape and size of the mask patterns. A model based on the dynamics of LISA pillar formation and mass conservation is presented and provides a guideline for choosing LISC process parameters. In the final part of the thesis, we study a technique to control the orientation of diblock copolymer phase separation in a thin film by applying a pressure on the film through a flat mask. The result is a well-ordered grating pattern of the phase separation with a period of tens of nanometers. The effect of pressure and film thickness on the final pattern is investigated by experiments. We suggest that the increased ordering is

  2. 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.

  3. Nanoscale protein arrays of rich morphologies via self-assembly on chemically treated diblock copolymer surfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Song, Sheng; Milchak, Marissa; Zhou, Hebing; Lee, Thomas; Hanscom, Mark; Hahm, Jong-in

    2013-03-01

    Well-controlled assembly of proteins on supramolecular templates of block copolymers can be extremely useful for high-throughput biodetection. We report the adsorption and assembly characteristics of a model antibody protein to various polystyrene-block-poly(4-vinylpyridine) templates whose distinctive nanoscale structures are obtained through time-regulated exposure to chloroform vapor. The strong adsorption preference of the protein to the polystyrene segment in the diblock copolymer templates leads to an easily predictable, controllable, rich set of nanoscale protein morphologies through self-assembly. We also demonstrate that the chemical identities of various subareas within individual nanostructures can be readily elucidated by investigating the corresponding protein adsorption behavior on each chemically distinct area of the template. In our approach, a rich set of intricate nanoscale morphologies of protein arrays that cannot be easily attained through other means can be generated straightforwardly via self-assembly of proteins on chemically treated diblock copolymer surfaces, without the use of clean-room-based fabrication tools. Our approach provides much-needed flexibility and versatility for the use of block copolymer-based protein arrays in biodetection. The ease of fabrication in producing well-defined and self-assembled templates can contribute to a high degree of versatility and simplicity in acquiring an intricate nanoscale geometry and spatial distribution of proteins in arrays. These advantages can be extremely beneficial both for fundamental research and biomedical detection, especially in the areas of solid-state-based, high-throughput protein sensing.

  4. 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

  5. Guided self-assembly of diblock copolymer thin films on chemically patterned substrates.

    PubMed

    Wu, Xiang-Fa; Dzenis, Yuris A

    2006-11-07

    We study the guided self-assembly of symmetric/asymmetric diblock copolymer (BCP) films on heterogeneous substrates with chemically patterned surface by using a coarse-grained phase-separation model. During the procedure, the free energy employed for the BCP films was modeled by the Ginzburg-Landau free energy with nonlocal interaction, and the flat, chemically patterned surface was considered as a heterogeneous surface with short-range interaction with the BCP molecules. The resulting Cahn-Hilliard equation was solved by means of an efficient semi-implicit Fourier-spectral algorithm. Effects of pattern scale, surface chemical potential, and BCP asymmetry on the self-assembly process were explored in detail and compared with those without chemically patterned substrate surfaces. It was found that the morphology of both symmetric and asymmetric BCP films is strongly influenced by the commensurability between the unconstrained natural period lambda* of the bulk BCP and the artificial pattern period. Simulation shows that patterned surface with period close to lambda* leads to highly ordered morphology after self-assembly for both symmetric and asymmetric BCP films, and it also dramatically accelerates the guided self-assembly process. The present simulation is in a very good agreement with the recent experimental observation in BCP nanolithography. Finally, the present study also expects an innovative nanomanufacturing method to produce highly ordered nanodots based on the guided self-assembly of asymmetric BCP films on chemically patterned substrates.

  6. Stimulus-responsive self-assembly: reversible, redox-controlled micellization of polyferrocenylsilane diblock copolymers.

    PubMed

    Eloi, Jean-Charles; Rider, David A; Cambridge, Graeme; Whittell, George R; Winnik, Mitchell A; Manners, Ian

    2011-06-15

    In depth studies of the use of electron transfer reactions as a means to control the self-assembly of diblock copolymers with an electroactive metalloblock are reported. Specifically, the redox-triggered self-assembly of a series of polystyrene-block-polyferrocenylsilane (PS-b-PFS) diblock copolymers in dichloromethane solution is described. In the case of the amorphous polystyrene(n)-b-poly(ferrocenylphenylmethylsilane)(m) diblock copolymers (PS(n)-b-PFMPS(m): n = 548, m = 73; n = 71, m = 165; where n and m are the number-averaged degrees of polymerization), spherical micelles with an oxidized PFS core and a PS corona were formed upon oxidation of more than 50% of the ferrocenyl units by [N(C(6)H(4)Br-4)(3)][SbX(6)] (X = Cl, F). Analogous block copolymers containing a poly(ferrocenylethylmethylsilane) (PFEMS) metalloblock, which has a lower glass transition temperature, behaved similarly. However, in contrast, on replacement of the amorphous metallopolymer blocks by semicrystalline poly(ferrocenyldimethylsilane) (PFDMS) segments, a change in the observed morphology was detected with the formation of ribbon-like micelles upon oxidation of PS(535)-b-PFDMS(103) above the same threshold value. Again the coronas consisted of fully solvated PS and the core consisted of partially to fully oxidized PFS associated with the counteranions. When oxidation was performed with [N(C(6)H(4)Br-4)(3)][SbF(6)], reduction of the cores of the spherical or ribbon-like micelles with [Co(η-C(5)Me(5))(2)] enabled full recovery of the neutral chains and no significant chain scission was detected.

  7. Multiscale coarse graining of diblock copolymer self-assembly: from monomers to ordered micelles.

    PubMed

    Pierleoni, Carlo; Addison, Chris; Hansen, Jean-Pierre; Krakoviack, Vincent

    2006-03-31

    Starting from a microscopic lattice model, we investigate clustering, micellization, and micelle ordering in semidilute solutions of AB diblock copolymers in a selective solvent. To bridge the gap in length scales, from monomers to ordered micellar structures, we implement a two-step coarse-graining strategy, whereby the AB copolymers are mapped onto ultrasoft dumbells with monomer-averaged effective interactions between the centers of mass of the blocks. Monte Carlo simulations of this coarse-grained model yield clear-cut evidence for self-assembly into micelles with a mean aggregation number n approximately 100 beyond a critical concentration. At a slightly higher concentration the micelles spontaneously undergo a disorder-order transition to a cubic phase. We determine the effective potential between these micelles from first principles.

  8. Defectivity study of directed self-assembly of cylindrical diblock copolymers in laterally confined thin channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Bongkeun; Laachi, Nabil; Fredrickson, Glenn H.

    2013-03-01

    We use self-consistent field theory (SCFT) to study the directed self-assembly of cylinder-forming diblock copolymers laterally confined in narrow channels. The side walls and top/bottom surfaces of the channel are either all major block attractive, all minor block attractive, or a combination of major block attractive on the top surface and minor block attractive on the remaining film surfaces. We focus on systems in which the self-assembled cylinders form a monolayer oriented parallel to the sidewalls in a thin channel. Experimentally and theoretically, well-ordered perfect cylinders are observed in narrow channels, but undesirable defective structures are also found. We investigate the energetics of isolated, meta-stable defects and compare them with two types of defects (dislocations and disclinations) recently investigated in laterally confined lamellar block copolymer systems using SCFT. Our simulation results are also compared with defect energy estimates for lying down cylinder monolayers extracted from experimental work by Mishra and coworkers. Parametric studies include the effects of film thickness, domain spacing, χN, and composition on defect energies with various wall wetting conditions in narrow channels of varying widths. A major finding is that defects of cylindrical directed self-assembly in a confined channel have a smaller free energy cost (tens of kT) in comparison with defects in laterally confined, vertically oriented lamellae (many tens of kT). We also discovered a novel vertically branched cylinder defect in the case of neutral top and bottom surfaces with significantly lower defect energy than a corresponding dislocation defect. More broadly, this study reveals unexpected dependences of equilibrium defect densities on a wide range of parameters that must be carefully controlled in order to successfully implement a directed self-assembly process with block-copolymers.

  9. Directed Self-Assembly of Diblock Copolymer Thin Films on Prepatterned Metal Nanoarrays.

    PubMed

    Chang, Tongxin; Huang, Haiying; He, Tianbai

    2016-01-01

    The sequential layer by layer self-assembly of block copolymer (BCP) nanopatterns is an effective approach to construct 3D nanostructures. Here large-scale highly ordered metal nano-arrays prepared from solvent annealed thin films of polystyrene-block-poly(2-vinylpyridine) (PS-b-P2VP) diblock copolymer are used to direct the assembly of the same BCP. The influence of initial loading concentration of metal precursor, the type of metal nanoparticle (gold, platinum, and silver), and the nanoparticle-substrate interaction on the directed assembly behavior of the upper BCP layer have been focused. It is found that the upper BCP film can be completely directed by the gold nanoarray with P2VP domain exclusively located between two adjacent gold nanowires or nanodots, which behaves the same way as on the platinum nanoarray. While the silver nanoarray can be destroyed during the upper BCP self-assembly with the silver nanoparticles assembled into the P2VP domain. Based on the discussions of the surface energy of nanoparticles and the interplay between nanoparticle-substrate interaction and nanoparticle-polymer interaction, it is concluded that the effect of immobilization of nanoparticles on the substrate, together with entropy effect to minimize the energetically unfavorable chain stretching contributes to the most effective alignment between each layer.

  10. 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

  11. Microphase separation through competitive hydrogen bonding in self-assembled A-b-B/C diblock copolymer/homopolymer complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hameed, Nishar; Salim, Nisa V.; Guo, Qipeng

    2009-12-01

    We present a study of microphase separation induced by competitive hydrogen bonding in A-b-B/C diblock copolymer/homopolymer complexes where the diblock copolymer A-b-B is immiscible and the homopolymer C can interact unequally with both A and B blocks through hydrogen bonding. A model system containing poly(2-vinyl pyridine)-block-poly(methyl methacrylate) (P2VP-b-PMMA) and poly(4-vinyl phenol) (PVPh) in tetrahydrofuran was investigated. In these self-assembled complexes, microphase separation takes place due to the disparity in intermolecular interactions. Specifically, PVPh and P2VP blocks interact strongly to form complex, whereas PVPh and PMMA blocks interact weakly. The hydrogen bonding interactions were revealed by infrared spectroscopy and analyzed in terms of the difference in interassociation constants (K), i.e., interaction parameters of each blocks of the block copolymer to the homopolymer and according to the random phase approximation. The phase behavior of the complexes was investigated with small-angle x-ray scattering and transmission electron microscopy. A series of morphologies including lamellae, hexagonal cylinders, wormlike microdomains, and hierarchical structures was documented as a function of the copolymer concentration. Moreover, we outlined how hydrogen bonding determines the self-assembly and causes morphological transitions in different A-b-B/C diblock copolymer/homopolymer systems with respect to the K values.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

    2015-09-22

    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/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.

  14. 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.

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

    DOE PAGES

    An, Hyosung; Mike, Jared; Smith, Kendall A.; ...

    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

  16. 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

  17. 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.

  18. Mesosized Crystal-like Structure of Hexagonally Packed Hollow Hoops by Solution Self-Assembly of Diblock Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Lifeng; Bartels, Carl; Yu, Yisong; Shen, Hongwei; Eisenberg, Adi

    1997-12-01

    Mesosize crystal-like aggregates with an internal structure of hexagonally packed hollow hoops (HHH) in a polystyrene matrix have been prepared in solution by self-assembly of asymmetric polystyrene-b-poly(acrylic acid) diblock copolymers. Most of the aggregates are cylindrical or in the shape of truncated cones. The external surface of the aggregates and the internal surface of the hollow hoops are lines with short poly(acrylic acid) chains. The hoop morphology is imposed because the end-capping energy of a rod on this size scale is more important than the curvature energy. A strong interdependence between the external shape and the internal structure in these mesosize particles is demonstrated.

  19. 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.

  20. 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%).

  1. 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

  2. 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.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-03-03

    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.

  4. 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.

  5. Self-Assembly of AB Diblock Copolymer Confined in a Soft Nano-Droplet: A Combination Study by Monte Carlo Simulation and Experiment.

    PubMed

    Yan, Nan; Zhu, Yutian; Jiang, Wei

    2016-11-23

    The self-assembly of AB-type diblock copolymers confined in a three-dimensional (3D) soft nanodroplet is investigated by the combination of Monte Carlo simulation and experiment. The influences of two critical factors, i.e., confinement degree of the imposed confinement space and the interfacial interaction between each individual block and boundary interface, on the 3D soft confined self-assembly are examined systematically. The simulation results reveal that block copolymer chains become more and more folded as the confinement degree (it can be monitored by the ratio of D/L, where L is the length of polymer chain and D is the reduced diameter of the final polymeric particle) is enhanced, causing a series of morphological transitions. Based on the simulation prediction, we perform the corresponding experiments by the 3D confined self-assembly of both symmetric and asymmetric block copolymers within the emulsion droplets. The experimental results well reproduce the confinement degree induced morphological transitions predicted by the simulations, such as the transition from segmented pupa-like particle to hamburger particle and the transition from raspberry-like particle to triangle-like particle, and then to hamburger particle. The current study implies that self-assembled nanostructures under 3D soft confinement can be simply controlled by tuning the confinement degree and interfacial property, i.e., the ratio of D/L and the interfacial interaction between each individual block and boundary interface.

  6. 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.

  7. Selective area atomic layer deposited ZnO nanodot on self-assembled monolayer pattern using a diblock copolymer nano-template.

    PubMed

    Kim, Doyoung; Yoon, Jaehong; Kim, Hyungjun

    2012-02-01

    ZnO nanodots were prepared by selective area atomic layer deposition (SA-ALD) on an octadecyltrichlorosilane (ODTS) self-assembly monolayers (SAMs) patterns formed using a diblock co-polymer (DBC) nanotemplate. In order to transfer well-ordered nanaotemplate in SAMs, SiO2 sacrificial layer was inserted between DBC and SAMs. Cylindrical nanoholes under 16 nm diameters were well-formed on SiO2 layer. SA-ALD of ZnO was successfully performed on by ODTS SAMs.

  8. Synthesis and self-assembly of brush-type poly[poly(ethylene glycol)methyl ether methacrylate]-block-poly(pentafluorostyrene) amphiphilic diblock copolymers in aqueous solution.

    PubMed

    Tan, B H; Hussain, H; Liu, Y; He, C B; Davis, T P

    2010-02-16

    Well-defined fluorinated brush-like amphiphilic diblock copolymers of poly[poly(ethylene glycol)methyl ether methacrylate] (P(PEGMA)) and poly(pentafluorostyrene) (PPFS) have been successfully synthesized via atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP). The self-assembly behavior of these polymers in aqueous solutions was studied using (1)H NMR, fluorescence spectrometry, static and dynamic light scattering and transmission electron microscopy techniques. The micellar structure comprised of PPFS as the core and brush-like (hydrophobic main chain and hydrophilic branches) polymers as the coronas. The hydrodynamic radius (R(h)) of the micelles in aqueous solution was in the nanometer range, independent of the polymer concentration, consistent with a closed association model. Diblock copolymers with a longer P(PEGMA) block formed micelles with smaller R(h) and lower aggregation numbers consistent with an improved solubilization of the core. The micelles possessed a thick hydration layer as verified by the ratio of the radius of gyration, R(g) to the hydrodynamic radius, R(h). The aggregation number and ratio of R(g) to R(h) were observed to increase with temperature (20-50 degrees C), while the R(h) of the micelle decreased slightly over the same temperature range. An increase in temperature induced the brush-like PEG segments in the corona to dehydrate and shrink while forming micelles with larger aggregation numbers.

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. Preparation and Cross-Linking of All-Acrylamide Diblock Copolymer Nano-Objects via Polymerization-Induced Self-Assembly in Aqueous Solution

    PubMed Central

    2017-01-01

    Various carboxylic acid-functionalized poly(N,N-dimethylacrylamide) (PDMAC) macromolecular chain transfer agents (macro-CTAs) were chain-extended with diacetone acrylamide (DAAM) by reversible addition–fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) aqueous dispersion polymerization at 70 °C and 20% w/w solids to produce a series of PDMAC–PDAAM diblock copolymer nano-objects via polymerization-induced self-assembly (PISA). TEM studies indicate that a PDMAC macro-CTA with a mean degree of polymerization (DP) of 68 or higher results in the formation of well-defined spherical nanoparticles with mean diameters ranging from 40 to 150 nm. In contrast, either highly anisotropic worms or polydisperse vesicles are formed when relatively short macro-CTAs (DP = 40–58) are used. A phase diagram was constructed to enable accurate targeting of pure copolymer morphologies. Dynamic light scattering (DLS) and aqueous electrophoresis studies indicated that in most cases these PDMAC–PDAAM nano-objects are surprisingly resistant to changes in either solution pH or temperature. However, PDMAC40–PDAAM99 worms do undergo partial dissociation to form a mixture of relatively short worms and spheres on adjusting the solution pH from pH 2–3 to around pH 9 at 20 °C. Moreover, a change in copolymer morphology from worms to a mixture of short worms and vesicles was observed by DLS and TEM on heating this worm dispersion to 50 °C. Postpolymerization cross-linking of concentrated aqueous dispersions of PDMAC–PDAAM spheres, worms, or vesicles was performed at ambient temperature using adipic acid dihydrazide (ADH), which reacts with the hydrophobic ketone-functionalized PDAAM chains. The formation of hydrazone groups was monitored by FT-IR spectroscopy and afforded covalently stabilized nano-objects that remained intact on exposure to methanol, which is a good solvent for both blocks. Rheological studies indicated that the cross-linked worms formed a stronger gel compared to linear precursor

  13. Chemical imaging of the surface of self-assembled polystyrene-b-poly(methyl methacrylate) diblock copolymer films using apertureless near-field IR microscopy.

    PubMed

    Mueller, Kerstin; Yang, Xiujuan; Paulite, Melissa; Fakhraai, Zahra; Gunari, Nikhil; Walker, Gilbert C

    2008-06-01

    The nanoscale chemical composition variations of the surfaces of thin films of polystyrene- b-poly(methyl methacrylate) (PS- b-PMMA) diblock copolymers are investigated using apertureless near-field IR microscopy. The scattering of the incident infrared beam from a modulated atomic force microscopy (AFM) tip is probed using homodyne detection and demodulation at the tip oscillation frequency. An increase in the IR attenuation is observed in the PMMA-rich domains with a wavenumber dependence that is consistent with the bulk absorption spectrum. The results indicate that even though a small topography-induced artifact can be observed in the near-field images, the chemical signature of the sample is detected clearly.

  14. Electrochemically controlled self-assembly of block copolymer nanostructures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eitouni, Hany Basam

    Organometallic block copolymers, wherein one block is composed of alternating ferrocene and dialkylsilane units in the main chain, undergo self-assembly to form microphase-separated ordered structures similarly to typical organic block copolymers. The 1,1'-dimethylsilylferrocenophane monomer was synthesized and polymerized anionically with other monomers to make a variety of different organometallic block copolymers. The phase behavior and thermodynamic interactions of anionically synthesized poly(styrene-block-ferrocenyldimethylsilane) (SF) and poly(isoprene-block-ferrocenyldimethylsilane) (IF) copolymers were examined using depolarized light scattering, small angle x-ray and neutron scattering (SAXS and SANS), and transmission electron microscopy. The temperature-dependence of the Flory-Huggins parameter, chi, and the statistical segment lengths of SF and IF copolymers were determined by SAXS and SANS using the random phase approximation. The thermodynamic interactions in poly(ferrocenyldimethylsilane) diblock copolymers were systematically adjusted by oxidizing the ferrocene moieties with silver salts and examined using SAXS and depolarized light scattering. The polymers retained microphase separated ordered structures upon oxidation and showed systematic changes in the location of the order-disorder transition as a function of extent of oxidation. By controlling the redox properties of the ferrocene moiety in the backbone of the polymer, we present a method for controlling the self-assembled microstructure and hence bulk material properties. Using electrochemical techniques, a novel means of controlling the order-disorder transition of block copolymers was discovered. By applying very small electrical potentials to disordered solutions of organometallic block copolymers, oriented ordered grains were formed near one electrode, the result of electrochemical reactions. After reversing the electrical bias on the system, the ordered grains disappeared and new

  15. Self-assembly of Random Copolymers

    PubMed Central

    Li, Longyu; Raghupathi, Kishore; Song, Cunfeng; Prasad, Priyaa; Thayumanavan, S.

    2014-01-01

    Self-assembly of random copolymers has attracted considerable attention recently. In this feature article, we highlight the use of random copolymers to prepare nanostructures with different morphologies and to prepare nanomaterials that are responsive to single or multiple stimuli. The synthesis of single-chain nanoparticles and their potential applications from random copolymers are also discussed in some detail. We aim to draw more attention to these easily accessible copolymers, which are likely to play an important role in translational polymer research. PMID:25036552

  16. 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.

  17. Self-assembly of crystalline nanotubes from monodisperse amphiphilic diblock copolypeptoid tiles

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Jing; Jiang, Xi; Lund, Reidar; Downing, Kenneth H.; Balsara, Nitash P.; Zuckermann, Ronald N.

    2016-01-01

    The folding and assembly of sequence-defined polymers into precisely ordered nanostructures promises a class of well-defined biomimetic architectures with specific function. Amphiphilic diblock copolymers are known to self-assemble in water to form a variety of nanostructured morphologies including spheres, disks, cylinders, and vesicles. In all of these cases, the predominant driving force for assembly is the formation of a hydrophobic core that excludes water, whereas the hydrophilic blocks are solvated and extend into the aqueous phase. However, such polymer systems typically have broad molar mass distributions and lack the purity and sequence-defined structure often associated with biologically derived polymers. Here, we demonstrate that purified, monodisperse amphiphilic diblock copolypeptoids, with chemically distinct domains that are congruent in size and shape, can behave like molecular tile units that spontaneously assemble into hollow, crystalline nanotubes in water. The nanotubes consist of stacked, porous crystalline rings, and are held together primarily by side-chain van der Waals interactions. The peptoid nanotubes form without a central hydrophobic core, chirality, a hydrogen bond network, and electrostatic or π–π interactions. These results demonstrate the remarkable structure-directing influence of n-alkane and ethyleneoxy side chains in polymer self-assembly. More broadly, this work suggests that flexible, low–molecular-weight sequence-defined polymers can serve as molecular tile units that can assemble into precision supramolecular architectures. PMID:27035944

  18. Self-assembly of crystalline nanotubes from monodisperse amphiphilic diblock copolypeptoid tiles.

    PubMed

    Sun, Jing; Jiang, Xi; Lund, Reidar; Downing, Kenneth H; Balsara, Nitash P; Zuckermann, Ronald N

    2016-04-12

    The folding and assembly of sequence-defined polymers into precisely ordered nanostructures promises a class of well-defined biomimetic architectures with specific function. Amphiphilic diblock copolymers are known to self-assemble in water to form a variety of nanostructured morphologies including spheres, disks, cylinders, and vesicles. In all of these cases, the predominant driving force for assembly is the formation of a hydrophobic core that excludes water, whereas the hydrophilic blocks are solvated and extend into the aqueous phase. However, such polymer systems typically have broad molar mass distributions and lack the purity and sequence-defined structure often associated with biologically derived polymers. Here, we demonstrate that purified, monodisperse amphiphilic diblock copolypeptoids, with chemically distinct domains that are congruent in size and shape, can behave like molecular tile units that spontaneously assemble into hollow, crystalline nanotubes in water. The nanotubes consist of stacked, porous crystalline rings, and are held together primarily by side-chain van der Waals interactions. The peptoid nanotubes form without a central hydrophobic core, chirality, a hydrogen bond network, and electrostatic or π-π interactions. These results demonstrate the remarkable structure-directing influence of n-alkane and ethyleneoxy side chains in polymer self-assembly. More broadly, this work suggests that flexible, low-molecular-weight sequence-defined polymers can serve as molecular tile units that can assemble into precision supramolecular architectures.

  19. 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.

  20. Mesoscopic simulation of the self-assembly of the weak polyelectrolyte poly(ethylene oxide)-block-poly(methyl methacrylate) diblock copolymers.

    PubMed

    Mu, Dan; Li, Jian-Quan; Feng, Sheng-Yu

    2015-06-14

    We designed twelve types of weak polyelectrolytes (i.e., PEO-b-PMMA copolymers (BCP) in multi-arm structures, where six include EO blocks as joint points and the other six have MMA blocks as joint points). All of the BCPs with EO as the joint points form disordered phases with the exception of long-chained and four-armed BCP. The main mesophases of all of the BCPs with MMA as joint points are micelle-like and bicontinuous phases. In particular, the short-chained BCP with four-arms and EO segments outside form a new phase type (i.e., crossed lamellar phase). Using MesoDyn, we provide a comprehensive representation of the micelle and crossed lamellar phase formation mechanisms based on both thermodynamic and dynamic analyses. A shear force on a micelle-like phase could promote a hexagonal columnar phase, which is a good technique for generating an ordered arrangement of nanotube arrays. Blending homopolymers with the same constituents could promote uniformity of the micelle size and decrease the polydispersity, especially for blends with a high BCP concentration, which may provide a new approach for regulating the properties of materials.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. Rapid self-assembly of block copolymers to photonic crystals

    DOEpatents

    Xia, Yan; Sveinbjornsson, Benjamin R; Grubbs, Robert H; Weitekamp, Raymond; Miyake, Garret M; Atwater, Harry A; Piunova, Victoria; Daeffler, Christopher Scot; Hong, Sung Woo; Gu, Weiyin; Russell, Thomas P.

    2016-07-05

    The invention provides a class of copolymers having useful properties, including brush block copolymers, wedge-type block copolymers and hybrid wedge and polymer block copolymers. In an embodiment, for example, block copolymers of the invention incorporate chemically different blocks comprising polymer size chain groups and/or wedge groups that significantly inhibit chain entanglement, thereby enhancing molecular self-assembly processes for generating a range of supramolecular structures, such as periodic nanostructures and microstructures. The present invention also provides useful methods of making and using copolymers, including block copolymers.

  4. Programmable Crafting of Hierarchically Structured Block Copolymer/Nanoparticles (and Nanorods) via Flow Enabled Self-Assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Zhiqun; Li, Bo; Han, Wei

    2014-03-01

    Hierarchical assembly of diblock copolymer/nanocrystals (e.g., Au and CdSe nanoparticles and nanorods) was successfully crafted into parallel stripes by flow enabled self-assembly (FESA). They were precisely and programmably patterned at desired position on the substrate. Remarkably, a minimum spacing between two adjacent stripes was observed and a model was proposed to understand the relationship between the width of stripes and the minimum spacing. FESA of diblock copolymer/nanocrystals is a lithography-free method and facile to implement, offering opportunities for creating functional hierarchically structured materials and devices. We gratefully acknowledge support from NSF CBET 1159048 and 1332780.

  5. 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

  6. Self-organization of OPV-PEG diblock copolymers in THF/water.

    SciTech Connect

    Jurban, V.; Littrell, K. C.; Thiyagarajan, P.; Wang, H. B.; Wang, H. H.; Yu, L.

    1999-07-02

    Oligo(phenylenevinylene)-poly(ethyleneglycol) (OPV-PEG) diblock copolymers in tetrahydrofuran (THF) solution at concentrations of 5 to 25 gl self-assemble into rod-like structures with a radius of about 80 {angstrom} for an OPV-PEG diblock copolymer comprising 13 PV and 45 EG monomers. These aggregates consist of a liquid crystalline OPV core and a PEG shell. Addition of about 10% water to the solution induces the formation of a phase of packed rods, as revealed by a sudden and dramatic transition of the scattering pattern. Further addition of water leads to swelling and at about 30% ultimately to disruption of the packed-rod phase.

  7. Polythiophene-block-polyfluorene and Polythiophene-blockpoly(fluorene-co-benzothiadiazole): Insights into the Self-Assembly of All-Conjugated Block Copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    Verduzco, R.; DiMasi, E.; Botiz, I.; Pickel, D.L.; Kilbey II, S.M.; Hong, K.; Darling, S.B.

    2010-12-07

    All-conjugated block copolymers have significant potential for solution-processed optoelectronic applications, in particular those relying on a p/n junction. Herein, we report the synthesis and 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 characterized with NMR spectroscopy, size-exclusion chromatography, multiangle laser light scattering, and UV/vis spectroscopy. Structure in thin films and in the bulk is characterized using differential scanning calorimetry, X-ray diffraction, small-angle X-ray scattering, and atomic force microscopy. Diblock copolymer thin films self-assemble into a crystalline nanostructure with some long-range order after extended solvent annealing, and X-ray scattering measurements show that powder samples exhibit crystallinity throughout the bulk. By temperature dependent X-ray scattering measurements, we find that diblock copolymers self-assemble into crystalline nanowires with phase segregated block copolymer domains. These measurements show all-conjugated diblock copolymers may be useful for achieving solution-processed active layers in organic photovoltaics and light-emitting diodes with optimized structural and photophysical characteristics.

  8. Effects of shape anisotropy on microstructural evolution of diblock copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Panday, Ashoutosh

    This dissertation discusses the effects of shape anisotropy on the evolved microstructure of diblock copolymers at various levels. Due to chain connectivity and microphase separation, the diblock copolymers self-assemble into ellipsoidal grains of lamellar and cylindrical morphologies. A grain-structure related phenomenon, Excluded Volume Epitaxy (E.V.E.) is explored in Chapter 2. E.V.E. is a local, inter-grain azimuthal orientational correlations effect, which results from a combination of sporadic nucleation and impingement of growing anisotropic shaped grains. Due to E.V.E., the ellipsoidal grains have a propensity for similar orientations in a local neighborhood, despite complete absence of global orientation in the sample. Simulations and experiments have verified this effect. The Avrami kinetics of anisotropic shaped grains is discussed in Chapter 3. Traditionally Avrami equation is used to model the growth kinetics of volume filling isotropic shaped grains. The probabilistic nature of Avrami kinetics produces a coupling between the grain shape and Poisson distribution. The Poisson-shape coupling remains latent for isotropic grains but becomes operative for anisotropic grains in random orientations scheme leading to inhibited growth kinetics. For unidirectional orientation of anisotropic grains, the growth kinetics remains uninhibited due to absence of Poisson-shape coupling. For two-dimensional case in simultaneous and continuous nucleation regimes, the inhibited kinetics scales as L1/2 where L is the shape anisotropy. The blends of highly shape anisotropic nanoclay, montmorillonite (MMT) and lamellar poly(styrene-b-isoprene), PS-PI are discussed in Appendix A. Annealing and cooling is sufficient to produce long-range lamellar order at 1 wt % clay loading. However at 5 wt % clay loading, shear force is additionally required. This system reveals the effect of shape anisotropy on evolution of long-range order in clay-block copolymer blends. The effect of shape

  9. Micellar cathodes from self-assembled nitroxide-containing block copolymers in battery electrolytes.

    PubMed

    Hauffman, Guillaume; Maguin, Quentin; Bourgeois, Jean-Pierre; Vlad, Alexandru; Gohy, Jean-François

    2014-01-01

    This contribution describes the synthesis of block copolymers containing electrochemically active blocks, their micellization, and finally their use as micellar cathodes in a lithium battery. The self-assembly of the synthesized poly(styrene)-block-poly(2,2,6,6-tetramethylpiperidinyloxy-4-yl methacrylate) (PS-b-PTMA) diblock copolymers is realized in a typical battery electrolyte made of 1 m lithium trifluoromethanesulfonate dissolved in a mixture of ethylene carbonate/diethyl carbonate/dimethyl carbonate(1:1:1, in volume). Dynamic light scattering and atomic force micro-scopy indicate the formation of well-defined spherical micelles with a PS core and a PTMA corona. The electrochemical properties of those micelles are further investigated. Cyclic voltammograms show a reversible redox reaction at 3.6 V (vs Li(+) /Li). The charge/discharge profiles indicate a flat and reversible plateau around 3.6 V (vs Li(+) /Li). Finally, the cycling performances of the micellar cathodes are demonstrated. Such self-assembled block copolymers open new opportunities for nanostructured organic radical batteries.

  10. Amine-reactive biodegradable diblock copolymers.

    PubMed

    Tessmar, Jörg K; Mikos, Antonios G; Göpferich, Achim

    2002-01-01

    A new class of diblock copolymers was synthesized from biodegradable poly(lactic acid) and poly(ethylene glycol)minus signmonoamine. These polymers were activated by covalently attaching linkers such as disuccinimidyl tartrate or disuccinimidyl succinate to the hydrophilic polymer chain. The polymers were characterized by (1)H NMR spectroscopy, (13)C NMR spectroscopy and gel permeation chromatography (GPC). These investigations indicated that the polymers were obtained with the correct composition, in high purities, and the expected molecular weight. By using dyes containing primary amine groups such as 5-aminoeosin as model substrates, it was possible to show that the polymers are able to bind such compounds covalently. The diblock copolymers were developed to suppress unspecific protein adsorption and allow the binding of bioactive molecules by instant surface modification. The polymers are intended to be used for tissue engineering applications where surface immobilized cell adhesion peptides or growth factors are needed to control cell behavior.

  11. Nanoparticle-directed self-assembly of amphiphilic block copolymers.

    PubMed

    Kamps, Amanda C; Sanchez-Gaytan, Brenda L; Hickey, Robert J; Clarke, Nigel; Fryd, Michael; Park, So-Jung

    2010-09-07

    Nanoparticles can form unique cavity-like structures in core-shell type assemblies of block copolymers through the cooperative self-assembly of nanoparticles and block copolymers. We show that the self-assembly behavior is general for common as-synthesized alkyl-terminated nanoparticles for a range of nanoparticle sizes. We examined various self-assembly conditions such as solvent compositions, nanoparticle coordinating ligands, volume fraction of nanoparticles, and nanoparticle sizes in order to elucidate the mechanism of the radial assembly formation. These experiments along with strong segregation theory calculations indicated that both the enthalpic interaction and the polymer stretching energy are important factors in the coassembly formation. The slightly unfavorable interaction between the hydrophobic segment of polymers and alkyl-terminated nanoparticles causes the accumulation of nanoparticles at the interface between the polymer core and the shell, forming the unique cavity-like structure. The coassemblies were stabilized for a limited range of nanoparticle volume fractions within which the inclusion of nanoparticle layers reduces the polymer stretching. The volume fraction range yielding the well-defined radial coassembly structure was mapped out with varying nanoparticle sizes. The experimental and theoretical phase map provides the guideline for the coassembly formation of as-synthesized alkyl-terminated nanoparticles and amphiphilic block copolymers.

  12. Self-Assembly of Block Copolymers in an Ionic Liquid

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Yiyong; Li, Zhibo; Lodge, Timothy P.

    2006-03-01

    Amphiphilic diblock copolymers poly((1,2-butadiene)-b-ethylene oxide) (PB-PEO) were shown to aggregate and form well-defined micelles in an ionic liquid, 1-butyl-3-methyl imidazolium hexafluorophosphate ([BMIM][PF6]). The universal sequence of micellar structures (spherical micelle, wormlike micelle, and bilayered vesicle) were all resolved by varying the block copolymer composition. For the first time, the nanostructures of PB-PEO micelles formed in an ionic liquid were directly visualized by cryogenic transmission electron microscopy (cryo-TEM). The detailed micelle structure information was extracted from cryo-TEM and dynamic light scattering (DLS) measurements, and compared to their aqueous counterparts. The work demonstrates the feasibility of controlling micellar nanostructures of amphiphilic block copolymers in ionic liquids, and also provides important knowledge for further applications of copolymers for forming microemulsions and ion gels.

  13. Directed self-assembly of block copolymers for high breakdown strength polymer film capacitors

    SciTech Connect

    Samant, Saumil P.; Grabowski, Christopher A.; Kisslinger, Kim; Yager, Kevin G.; Yuan, Guangcui; Satija, Sushil K.; Durstock, Michael F.; Raghavan, Dharmaraj; Karim, Alamgir

    2016-03-04

    Emerging needs for fast charge/discharge yet high-power, lightweight, and flexible electronics requires the use of polymer-film-based solid-state capacitors with high energy densities. Fast charge/discharge rates of film capacitors on the order of microseconds are not achievable with slower charging conventional batteries, supercapacitors and related hybrid technologies. However, the current energy densities of polymer film capacitors fall short of rising demand, and could be significantly enhanced by increasing the breakdown strength (EBD) and dielectric permittivity (εr) of the polymer films. Co-extruded two-homopolymer component multilayered films have demonstrated much promise in this regard showing higher EBD over that of component polymers. Multilayered films can also help incorporate functional features besides energy storage, such as enhanced optical, mechanical, thermal and barrier properties. In this work, we report accomplishing multilayer, multicomponent block copolymer dielectric films (BCDF) with soft-shear driven highly oriented self-assembled lamellar diblock copolymers (BCP) as a novel application of this important class of self-assembling materials. Results of a model PS-b-PMMA system show ~50% enhancement in EBD of self-assembled multilayer lamellar BCP films compared to unordered as-cast films, indicating that the breakdown is highly sensitive to the nanostructure of the BCP. The enhancement in EBD is attributed to the “barrier effect”, where the multiple interfaces between the lamellae block components act as barriers to the dielectric breakdown through the film. The increase in EBD corresponds to more than doubling the energy storage capacity using a straightforward directed self-assembly strategy. Lastly, this approach opens a new nanomaterial paradigm for designing high energy density dielectric materials.

  14. Directed self-assembly of block copolymers for high breakdown strength polymer film capacitors

    DOE PAGES

    Samant, Saumil P.; Grabowski, Christopher A.; Kisslinger, Kim; ...

    2016-03-04

    Emerging needs for fast charge/discharge yet high-power, lightweight, and flexible electronics requires the use of polymer-film-based solid-state capacitors with high energy densities. Fast charge/discharge rates of film capacitors on the order of microseconds are not achievable with slower charging conventional batteries, supercapacitors and related hybrid technologies. However, the current energy densities of polymer film capacitors fall short of rising demand, and could be significantly enhanced by increasing the breakdown strength (EBD) and dielectric permittivity (εr) of the polymer films. Co-extruded two-homopolymer component multilayered films have demonstrated much promise in this regard showing higher EBD over that of component polymers. Multilayeredmore » films can also help incorporate functional features besides energy storage, such as enhanced optical, mechanical, thermal and barrier properties. In this work, we report accomplishing multilayer, multicomponent block copolymer dielectric films (BCDF) with soft-shear driven highly oriented self-assembled lamellar diblock copolymers (BCP) as a novel application of this important class of self-assembling materials. Results of a model PS-b-PMMA system show ~50% enhancement in EBD of self-assembled multilayer lamellar BCP films compared to unordered as-cast films, indicating that the breakdown is highly sensitive to the nanostructure of the BCP. The enhancement in EBD is attributed to the “barrier effect”, where the multiple interfaces between the lamellae block components act as barriers to the dielectric breakdown through the film. The increase in EBD corresponds to more than doubling the energy storage capacity using a straightforward directed self-assembly strategy. Lastly, this approach opens a new nanomaterial paradigm for designing high energy density dielectric materials.« less

  15. Directed Self-Assembly of Block Copolymers for High Breakdown Strength Polymer Film Capacitors.

    PubMed

    Samant, Saumil P; Grabowski, Christopher A; Kisslinger, Kim; Yager, Kevin G; Yuan, Guangcui; Satija, Sushil K; Durstock, Michael F; Raghavan, Dharmaraj; Karim, Alamgir

    2016-03-01

    Emerging needs for fast charge/discharge yet high-power, lightweight, and flexible electronics requires the use of polymer-film-based solid-state capacitors with high energy densities. Fast charge/discharge rates of film capacitors on the order of microseconds are not achievable with slower charging conventional batteries, supercapacitors and related hybrid technologies. However, the current energy densities of polymer film capacitors fall short of rising demand, and could be significantly enhanced by increasing the breakdown strength (EBD) and dielectric permittivity (εr) of the polymer films. Co-extruded two-homopolymer component multilayered films have demonstrated much promise in this regard showing higher EBD over that of component polymers. Multilayered films can also help incorporate functional features besides energy storage, such as enhanced optical, mechanical, thermal and barrier properties. In this work, we report accomplishing multilayer, multicomponent block copolymer dielectric films (BCDF) with soft-shear driven highly oriented self-assembled lamellar diblock copolymers (BCP) as a novel application of this important class of self-assembling materials. Results of a model PS-b-PMMA system show ∼50% enhancement in EBD of self-assembled multilayer lamellar BCP films compared to unordered as-cast films, indicating that the breakdown is highly sensitive to the nanostructure of the BCP. The enhancement in EBD is attributed to the "barrier effect", where the multiple interfaces between the lamellae block components act as barriers to the dielectric breakdown through the film. The increase in EBD corresponds to more than doubling the energy storage capacity using a straightforward directed self-assembly strategy. This approach opens a new nanomaterial paradigm for designing high energy density dielectric materials.

  16. Orthogonal self-assembly in folding block copolymers.

    PubMed

    Hosono, Nobuhiko; Gillissen, Martijn A J; Li, Yuanchao; Sheiko, Sergei S; Palmans, Anja R A; Meijer, E W

    2013-01-09

    We herein report the synthesis and characterization of ABA triblock copolymers that contain two complementary association motifs and fold into single-chain polymeric nanoparticles (SCPNs) via orthogonal self-assembly. The copolymers were prepared using atom-transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) and possess different pendant functional groups in the A and B blocks (alcohols in the A block and acetylenes in the B block). After postfunctionalization, the A block contains o-nitrobenzyl-protected 2-ureidopyrimidinone (UPy) moieties and the B block benzene-1,3,5-tricarboxamide (BTA) moieties. While the protected UPy groups dimerize after photoinduced deprotection of the o-nitrobenzyl group, the BTA moieties self-assemble into helical aggregates when temperature is reduced. In a two-step thermal/photoirradiation treatment under dilute conditions, the ABA block copolymer forms both BTA-based helical aggregates and UPy dimers intramolecularly. The sequential association of the two self-assembling motifs results in single-chain folding of the polymer, affording nanometer-sized particles with a compartmentalized interior. Variable-temperature NMR studies showed that the BTA and UPy self-assembly steps take place orthogonally (i.e., without mutual interference) in dilute solution. In addition, monitoring of the intramolecular self-assembly of BTA moieties into helical aggregates by circular dichroism spectroscopy showed that the stability of the aggregates is almost independent of UPy dimerization. Size-exclusion chromatography (SEC) and small-angle X-ray scattering analysis provided evidence of significant reductions in the hydrodynamic volume and radius of gyration, respectively, after photoinduced deprotection of the UPy groups; a 30-60% reduction in the size of the polymer chains was observed using SEC in CHCl(3). Molecular imaging by atomic force microscopy (AFM) corroborated significant contraction of individual polymer chains due to intramolecular association of the

  17. Mechanism for Rapid Self-Assembly of Block Copolymer Nanoparticles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, Brian K.; Prud'Homme, Robert K.

    2003-09-01

    Amphiphilic block copolymers in solution spontaneously self-assemble when the solvent quality for one block is selectively decreased. We demonstrate that, for supersaturation ratio changes [d(S)/dt] over 105 per second from equilibrium, nanoparticles are obtained with a formation mechanism and size dependent on the jumping rate and magnitude. The threshold rate for homogeneous precipitation is determined by the induction time of a particle, equivalent to the diffusion limited fusion of copolymer chains to form a corona of overlapping soluble brushes. Via determination of the induction time with a novel confined impinging jets mixer and use of a scaling relation, the interfacial free energy of a block copolymer nanoparticle was measured for the first time.

  18. Bicontinuous polymeric microemulsions from polydisperse diblock copolymers.

    PubMed

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

    2009-03-26

    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 (Mw/Mn = 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 with the

  19. 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

  20. Cubosomes from hierarchical self-assembly of poly(ionic liquid) block copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Hongkun; Rahimi, Khosrow; Zhong, Mingjiang; Mourran, Ahmed; Luebke, David R.; Nulwala, Hunaid B.; Möller, Martin; Matyjaszewski, Krzysztof

    2017-01-01

    Cubosomes are micro- and nanoparticles with a bicontinuous cubic two-phase structure, reported for the self-assembly of low molecular weight surfactants, for example, lipids, but rarely formed by polymers. These objects are characterized by a maximum continuous interface and high interface to volume ratio, which makes them promising candidates for efficient adsorbents and host-guest applications. Here we demonstrate self-assembly to nanoscale cuboidal particles with a bicontinuous cubic structure by amphiphilic poly(ionic liquid) diblock copolymers, poly(acrylic acid)-block-poly(4-vinylbenzyl)-3-butyl imidazolium bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)imide, in a mixture of tetrahydrofuran and water under optimized conditions. Structure determining parameters include polymer composition and concentration, temperature, and the variation of the solvent mixture. The formation of the cubosomes can be explained by the hierarchical interactions of the constituent components. The lattice structure of the block copolymers can be transferred to the shape of the particle as it is common for atomic and molecular faceted crystals.

  1. Cubosomes from hierarchical self-assembly of poly(ionic liquid) block copolymers

    PubMed Central

    He, Hongkun; Rahimi, Khosrow; Zhong, Mingjiang; Mourran, Ahmed; Luebke, David R.; Nulwala, Hunaid B.; Möller, Martin; Matyjaszewski, Krzysztof

    2017-01-01

    Cubosomes are micro- and nanoparticles with a bicontinuous cubic two-phase structure, reported for the self-assembly of low molecular weight surfactants, for example, lipids, but rarely formed by polymers. These objects are characterized by a maximum continuous interface and high interface to volume ratio, which makes them promising candidates for efficient adsorbents and host-guest applications. Here we demonstrate self-assembly to nanoscale cuboidal particles with a bicontinuous cubic structure by amphiphilic poly(ionic liquid) diblock copolymers, poly(acrylic acid)-block-poly(4-vinylbenzyl)-3-butyl imidazolium bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)imide, in a mixture of tetrahydrofuran and water under optimized conditions. Structure determining parameters include polymer composition and concentration, temperature, and the variation of the solvent mixture. The formation of the cubosomes can be explained by the hierarchical interactions of the constituent components. The lattice structure of the block copolymers can be transferred to the shape of the particle as it is common for atomic and molecular faceted crystals. PMID:28091605

  2. 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

  3. 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

    2014-04-28

    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.

  4. Multilayer block copolymer meshes by orthogonal self-assembly

    PubMed Central

    Tavakkoli K. G., Amir; Nicaise, Samuel M.; Gadelrab, Karim R.; Alexander-Katz, Alfredo; Ross, Caroline A.; Berggren, Karl K.

    2016-01-01

    Continued scaling-down of lithographic-pattern feature sizes has brought templated self-assembly of block copolymers (BCPs) into the forefront of nanofabrication research. Technologies now exist that facilitate significant control over otherwise unorganized assembly of BCP microdomains to form both long-range and locally complex monolayer patterns. In contrast, the extension of this control into multilayers or 3D structures of BCP microdomains remains limited, despite the possible technological applications in next-generation devices. Here, we develop and analyse an orthogonal self-assembly method in which multiple layers of distinct-molecular-weight BCPs naturally produce nanomesh structures of cylindrical microdomains without requiring layer-by-layer alignment or high-resolution lithographic templating. The mechanisms for orthogonal self-assembly are investigated with both experiment and simulation, and we determine that the control over height and chemical preference of templates are critical process parameters. The method is employed to produce nanomeshes with the shapes of circles and Y-intersections, and is extended to produce three layers of orthogonally oriented cylinders. PMID:26796218

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. 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.

  8. Self-assembly behavior of ABA coil-rod-coil triblock copolymers: A Brownian dynamics simulation approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Yongliang; Lin, Shaoliang; He, Xiaohua; Lin, Jiaping; Jiang, Tao

    2011-07-01

    The self-assembly behavior of ABA coil-rod-coil triblock copolymers in a selective solvent was studied by a Brownian molecular dynamics simulation method. It was found that the rod midblock plays an important role in the self-assembly of the copolymers. With a decrease in the segregation strength, ɛRR, of rod pairs, the aggregate structure first varies from a smecticlike disk shape to a long twisted string micelle and then to small aggregates. The influence of the block length and the asymmetry of the triblock copolymer on the phase behavior were studied and the corresponding phase diagrams were mapped. It was revealed that the variation of these parameters has a profound effect on microstructure. The simulation results are consistent with experimental results. Compared to rod-coil diblock copolymers, the coil-rod-coil triblock copolymers has a larger entropy penalty associated with the interfacial grafting density of the aggregate, leading to a higher ɛRR value for structural transitions.

  9. 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.

  10. Interfacial properties of semifluorinated alkane diblock copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pierce, Flint; Tsige, Mesfin; Borodin, Oleg; Perahia, Dvora; Grest, Gary S.

    2008-06-01

    The liquid-vapor interfacial properties of semifluorinated linear alkane diblock copolymers of the form F3C(CF2)n-1(CH2)m-1CH3 are studied by fully atomistic molecular dynamics simulations. The chemical composition and the conformation of the molecules at the interface are identified and correlated with the interfacial energies. A modified form of the Optimized Parameter for Liquid Simulation All-Atom (OPLS-AA) force field of Jorgensen and co-workers [J. Am. Chem. Soc. 106, 6638 (1984); 118, 11225 (1996); J. Phys. Chem. A 105, 4118 (2001)], which includes specific dihedral terms for H-F blocks-and corrections to the H-F nonbonded interaction, is used together with a new version of the exp-6 force field developed in this work. Both force fields yield good agreement with the available experimental liquid density and surface tension data as well as each other over significant temperature ranges and for a variety of chain lengths and compositions. The interfacial regions of semifluorinated alkanes are found to be rich in fluorinated groups compared to hydrogenated groups, an effect that decreases with increasing temperature but is independent of the fractional length of the fluorinated segments. The proliferation of fluorine at the surface substantially lowers the surface tension of the diblock copolymers, yielding values near those of perfluorinated alkanes and distinct from those of protonated alkanes of the same chain length. With decreasing temperatures within the liquid state, chains are found to preferentially align perpendicular to the interface, as previously seen.

  11. A surface interaction model for self-assembly of block copolymers under soft confinement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Song, Jun-Qing; Liu, Yi-Xin; Zhang, Hong-Dong

    2016-12-01

    The surface interaction between substrates and block copolymers is one of the most important factors that control the alignment of self-assembled domains under thin film confinement. Most previous studies simply modeled substrates modified by grafting polymers as a hard wall with a specified surface energy, leading to an incomplete understanding of the role of grafted polymers. In this study, we propose a general model of surface interactions where the role of grafted polymers is decomposed into two independent contributions: the surface preference and the surface softness. Based on this model, we perform a numerical analysis of the stability competition between perpendicular and parallel lamellae of symmetric diblock copolymers on substrates modified by homopolymers using self-consistent field theory. The effects of the surface preference and the surface softness on the alignment of lamellar domains are carefully examined. A phase diagram of the alignment in the plane of the surface preference parameter and the surface softness parameter is constructed, which reveals a considerable parameter window for preparing stable perpendicular lamellae even on highly preferential substrates.

  12. Defects in the Self-Assembly of Block Copolymers and Their Relevance for Directed Self-Assembly.

    PubMed

    Li, Weihua; Müller, Marcus

    2015-01-01

    Block copolymer self-assembly provides a platform for fabricating dense, ordered nanostructures by encoding information in the chemical architecture of multicomponent macromolecules. Depending on the volume fraction of the components and chain topology, these macromolecules form a variety of spatially periodic microphases in thermodynamic equilibrium. The kinetics of self-assembly, however, often results in initial morphologies with defects, and the subsequent ordering is protracted. Different strategies have been devised to direct the self-assembly of copolymer materials by external fields to align and perfect the self-assembled nanostructures. Understanding and controlling the thermodynamics of defects, their response to external fields, and their dynamics is important because applications in microelectronics either require extremely low defect densities or aim at generating specific defects at predetermined locations to fabricate irregular device-oriented structures for integrated circuits. In this review, we discuss defect morphologies of block copolymers in the bulk and thin films, highlighting (a) analogies to and differences from defects in other crystalline materials, (b) the stability of defects and their dynamics, and (c) the influence of external fields.

  13. Morphology, directed self-assembly and pattern transfer from a high molecular weight polystyrene-block-poly(dimethylsiloxane) block copolymer film.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Li-Chen; Bai, Wubin; Fernandez Martin, Eduardo; Tu, Kun-Hua; Ntetsikas, Konstantinos; Liontos, George; Avgeropoulos, Apostolos; Ross, C A

    2017-04-07

    The self-assembly of block copolymers with large feature sizes is inherently challenging as the large kinetic barrier arising from chain entanglement of high molecular weight (MW) polymers limits the extent over which long-range ordered microdomains can be achieved. Here, we illustrate the evolution of thin film morphology from a diblock copolymer of polystyrene-block-poly(dimethylsiloxane) exhibiting total number average MW of 123 kg mol(-1), and demonstrate the formation of layers of well-ordered cylindrical microdomains under appropriate conditions of binary solvent mix ratio, commensurate film thickness, and solvent vapor annealing time. Directed self-assembly of the block copolymer within lithographically patterned trenches occurs with alignment of cylinders parallel to the sidewalls. Fabrication of ordered cobalt nanowire arrays by pattern transfer was also implemented, and their magnetic properties and domain wall behavior were characterized.

  14. Morphology, directed self-assembly and pattern transfer from a high molecular weight polystyrene-block-poly(dimethylsiloxane) block copolymer film

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheng, Li-Chen; Bai, Wubin; Fernandez Martin, Eduardo; Tu, Kun-Hua; Ntetsikas, Konstantinos; Liontos, George; Avgeropoulos, Apostolos; Ross, C. A.

    2017-04-01

    The self-assembly of block copolymers with large feature sizes is inherently challenging as the large kinetic barrier arising from chain entanglement of high molecular weight (MW) polymers limits the extent over which long-range ordered microdomains can be achieved. Here, we illustrate the evolution of thin film morphology from a diblock copolymer of polystyrene-block-poly(dimethylsiloxane) exhibiting total number average MW of 123 kg mol‑1, and demonstrate the formation of layers of well-ordered cylindrical microdomains under appropriate conditions of binary solvent mix ratio, commensurate film thickness, and solvent vapor annealing time. Directed self-assembly of the block copolymer within lithographically patterned trenches occurs with alignment of cylinders parallel to the sidewalls. Fabrication of ordered cobalt nanowire arrays by pattern transfer was also implemented, and their magnetic properties and domain wall behavior were characterized.

  15. Crystallization in sequence-defined peptoid diblock copolymers induced by microphase separation.

    PubMed

    Sun, Jing; Teran, Alexander A; Liao, Xunxun; Balsara, Nitash P; Zuckermann, Ronald N

    2014-02-05

    Atomic level synthetic control over a polymer's chemical structure can reveal new insights into the crystallization kinetics of block copolymers. Here, we explore the impact of side chain structure on crystallization behavior, by designing a series of sequence-defined, highly monodisperse peptoid diblock copolymers poly-N-decylglycine-block-poly-N-2-(2-(2-methoxyethoxy)ethoxy)ethylglycine (pNdc-b-pNte) with volume fraction of pNte (ϕNte) values ranging from 0.29 to 0.71 and polydispersity indices ≤1.00017. Both monomers have nearly identical molecular volumes, but the pNte block is amorphous while the pNdc block is crystalline. We demonstrate by X-ray scattering and calorimetry that all the block copolypeptoids self-assemble into lamellar microphases and that the self-assembly is driven by crystallization of the pNdc block. Interestingly, the microphase separated pNdc-b-pNte diblock copolymers form two distinct crystalline phases. Crystallization of the normally amorphous pNte chains is induced by the preorganization of the crystalline pNdc chains. We hypothesize that this is due to the similarity of chemical structure of the monomers (both monomers have linear side chains of similar lengths emanating from a polyglycine backbone). The pNte block remains amorphous when the pNdc block is replaced by another crystalline block, poly-N-isoamylglycine, suggesting that a close matching of the lattice spacings is required for induced crystallization. To our knowledge, there are no previous reports of crystallization of a polymer chain induced by microphase separation. These investigations show that polypeptoids provide a unique platform for examining the effect of intertwined roles of side chain organization on the thermodynamic properties of diblock copolymers.

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. Real-Time observation of PS-PDMS block copolymer self-assembly under solvent vapor annealing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bai, Wubin; Yager, Kevin; Ross, Caroline

    2015-03-01

    Solvent annealing provides a convenient way to produce microphase separation in films of block copolymers, but the morphology transition of the film during the solvent absorption, equilibrium solvent-BCP concentration and solvent desorption process are not well known. An in situ study of solvent annealing of polystyrene-block-polydimethylsiloxane (PS-PDMS, 16 kg/mol, fPDMS = 30%, period 17 nm) diblock copolymer was carried by synchrotron grazing-incidence small-angle X-ray scattering (GISAXS). The swollen film morphology was found to be strongly dependent on swelling ratio. A transition from the disordered state to a highly ordered state which contained multiple layers of in-plane cylinders was observed at a swelling ratio around 1.45 from samples with 100nm to 1000nm as-cast thickness. The rate of solvent absorption was found to be less important to the dried morphology, while the time of equilibrium solvent-BCP concentration stage was found to influence the orientation of self-assembled microdomains and the drying rate was found to affect the degree of structure deformation. The implications of the results to pattern generation for block copolymer directed self-assembly will be discussed. Semiconductor Research Corporation, National Science Foundation.

  19. Post-Self-Assembly Cross-Linking to Integrate Molecular Nanofibers with Copolymers in Oscillatory Hydrogels

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-05-09

    polymerizable sites for copolymerizing with N-isopropylacrylamide and for attaching a catalytic ruthenium bipyridine complex on the copolymer. The... ruthenium complex containing a vinyl group. This post- self-assembly cross-linking approach not only demonstrated the stability of the peptide bond under...attaching a catalytic ruthenium bipyridine complex on the copolymer. The combination of supramolecular self-assembly with copolymerization offers a

  20. Self-assembly of polypeptide-based copolymers into diverse aggregates.

    PubMed

    Cai, Chunhua; Wang, Liquan; Lin, Jiaping

    2011-10-28

    Recently, increasing attention has been given to the self-assembly behavior of polypeptide-based copolymers. Polypeptides can serve as either shell-forming or core-forming blocks in the formation of various aggregates. The solubility and rigidity of polypeptide blocks have been found to have a profound effect on the self-assembly behavior of polypeptide-based copolymers. Polypeptide graft copolymers combine the advantages of a grafting strategy and the characteristics of polypeptide chains and their self-assembly behavior can be easily adjusted by choosing different polymer chains and copolymer architectures. Fabricating hierarchical structures is one of the attractive topics of self-assembly research of polypeptide copolymers. These hierarchical structures are promising for use in preparing functional materials and, thus, attract increasing attention. Computer simulations have emerged as powerful tools to investigate the self-assembly behavior of polymers, such as polypeptides. These simulations not only support the experimental results, but also provide information that cannot be directly obtained from experiments. In this feature article, recent advances in both experimental and simulation studies for the self-assembly behavior of polypeptide-based copolymers are reviewed.

  1. 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.

  2. Performance Enhancement of Electronic and Energy Devices via Block Copolymer Self-Assembly.

    PubMed

    Yoo, Hyeon Gyun; Byun, Myunghwan; Jeong, Chang Kyu; Lee, Keon Jae

    2015-07-15

    The use of self-assembled block copolymers (BCPs) for the fabrication of electronic and energy devices has received a tremendous amount of attention as a non-traditional approach to patterning integrated circuit elements at nanometer dimensions and densities inaccessible to traditional lithography techniques. The exquisite control over the dimensional features of the self-assembled nanostructures (i.e., shape, size, and periodicity) is one of the most attractive properties of BCP self-assembly. Harmonic spatial arrangement of the self-assembled nanoelements at desired positions on the chip may offer a new strategy for the fabrication of electronic and energy devices. Several recent reports show the great promise in using BCP self-assembly for practical applications of electronic and energy devices, leading to substantial enhancements of the device performance. Recent progress is summarized here, with regard to the performance enhancements of non-volatile memory, electrical sensor, and energy devices enabled by directed BCP self-assembly.

  3. Shear ordered diblock copolymers with tuneable optical properties.

    PubMed

    Parnell, Andrew J; Tzokova, Nadejda; Pryke, Andrew; Howse, Jonathan R; Mykhaylyk, Oleksandr O; Ryan, Anthony J; Panine, Pierre; Fairclough, J Patrick A

    2011-02-28

    A series of high molecular weight poly(styrene-b-isoprene) block copolymers with optical properties defined by composition in a non-selective solvent were studied using simultaneous ultra small angle X-ray scattering (USAXS) and optical spectrometry. A small magnitude shear produces ordered and oriented states in the copolymer solutions that persist for extended periods of time, and also have superior optical properties that are directly attributable to the mesoscopic block copolymer (BCP) morphology. We have demonstrated that the optical transmission of these materials can be tuned by the addition of low molecular weight poly(isoprene) and poly(styrene) to swell their respective domains within the diblock copolymer. The optical transmission peak for the diblocks could be tuned; from 380 nm-440 nm for the 670k diblock, 425 nm-540 nm for the 850k diblock and 541 nm-625 nm for the 1 million diblock by altering the solution concentration and composition. The full width at half maximum that can be achieved for the optical transmission peaks is as small as 15 nm at 473 nm with a Δλ/λ of 0.03, highlighting the high quality ordering in these systems. Also a small shift in the transmission peak wavelength was observed across a wide angle of view (15 nm at 30°) suggesting that these materials could be used for large area narrow band optical filters.

  4. Surface self-assembled PEGylation of fluoro-based PVDF membranes via hydrophobic-driven copolymer anchoring for ultra-stable biofouling resistance.

    PubMed

    Lin, Nien-Jung; Yang, Hui-Shan; Chang, Yung; Tung, Kuo-Lun; Chen, Wei-Hao; Cheng, Hui-Wen; Hsiao, Sheng-Wen; Aimar, Pierre; Yamamoto, Kazuo; Lai, Juin-Yih

    2013-08-13

    Stable biofouling resistance is significant for general filtration requirements, especially for the improvement of membrane lifetime. A systematic group of hyper-brush PEGylated diblock copolymers containing poly(ethylene glycol) methacrylate (PEGMA) and polystyrene (PS) was synthesized using an atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) method and varying PEGMA lengths. This study demonstrates the antibiofouling membrane surfaces by self-assembled anchoring PEGylated diblock copolymers of PS-b-PEGMA on the microporous poly(vinylidene fluoride) (PVDF) membrane. Two types of copolymers are used to modify the PVDF surface, one with different PS/PEGMA molar ratios in a range from 0.3 to 2.7 but the same PS molecular weights (MWs, ∼5.7 kDa), the other with different copolymer MWs (∼11.4, 19.9, and 34.1 kDa) but the similar PS/PEGMA ratio (∼1.7 ± 0.2). It was found that the adsorption capacities of diblock copolymers on PVDF membranes decreased as molar mass ratios of PS/PEGMA ratio reduced or molecular weights of PS-b-PEGMA increased because of steric hindrance. The increase in styrene content in copolymer enhanced the stability of polymer anchoring on the membrane, and the increase in PEGMA content enhanced the protein resistance of membranes. The optimum PS/PEGMA ratio was found to be in the range between 1.5 and 2.0 with copolymer MWs above 20.0 kDa for the ultrastable resistance of protein adsorption on the PEGylated PVDF membranes. The PVDF membrane coated with such a diblock copolymer owned excellent biofouling resistance to proteins of BSA and lysozyme as well as bacterium of Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus epidermidis and high stable microfiltration operated with domestic wastewater solution in a membrane bioreactor.

  5. 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.

  6. Filtration membranes from self-assembled block copolymers - a review on recent progress

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Upadhyaya, L.; Semsarilar, M.; Nehache, S.; Deratani, A.; Quemener, D.

    2015-07-01

    The very recent developments in preparation of filtration membranes from self-assembled block copolymers (BCPs) are reviewed in this paper. We look into membranes with very sharp pore size distribution and the approaches for manufacture of nanoporous films, including etching and templating, the advantages of the new process based on micelle assembly and phase inversion. The paper is divided in two main sections. In the first part different strategies to prepare membranes from block copolymers are summarized. The second part looks into the different factors affecting the pore formation, morphology and the characteristics of the membranes made from self-assembly of block copolymers.

  7. 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.

  8. Polypeptoids: A model system for exploring sequence and shape effects on block copolymer self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Segalman, Rachel

    2015-03-01

    While our ability to understand the detailed relationship between block copolymer chemistry and mesoscopic self-assembly has made remarkable progress over the last many years, yet we are still limited to a relatively small number of blocks in terms of structure-property understanding. Thus, there is a need to explore self-assembly phase space with sequence using a model system. Polypeptoids are non-natural, sequence specific polymers that offer the opportunity to probe the effect of sequence on self-assembly with much simpler molecular interactions and more scalable synthesis than traditional polypeptides. In this talk, I will discuss the use of this model system to understand the role of sequence on chain collapse and globule formation in solution, polymer crystallization, and block copolymer self-assembly. I will then discuss potential application as surface active agents for anti-fouling.

  9. Visible light-responsive micelles formed from dialkoxyanthracene-containing block copolymers.

    PubMed

    Yan, Qiang; Hu, Jun; Zhou, Rong; Ju, Yong; Yin, Yingwu; Yuan, Jinying

    2012-02-11

    A class of dialkoxyanthracene-containing diblock copolymers is synthesized which possesses visible light-responsivity. These copolymers can self-assemble into a micellar structure in water. Green visible light (540 nm) is able to scissor these anthracene species and cleave the diblock copolymer into two fragments, inducing disassembly of the self-assembled micelles.

  10. Topographically-designed triboelectric nanogenerator via block copolymer self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Jeong, Chang Kyu; Baek, Kwang Min; Niu, Simiao; Nam, Tae Won; Hur, Yoon Hyung; Park, Dae Yong; Hwang, Geon-Tae; Byun, Myunghwan; Wang, Zhong Lin; Jung, Yeon Sik; Lee, Keon Jae

    2014-12-10

    Herein, we report a facile and robust route to nanoscale tunable triboelectric energy harvesters realized by the formation of highly functional and controllable nanostructures via block copolymer (BCP) self-assembly. Our strategy is based on the incorporation of various silica nanostructures derived from the self-assembly of BCPs to enhance the characteristics of triboelectric nanogenerators (TENGs) by modulating the contact-surface area and the frictional force. Our simulation data also confirm that the nanoarchitectured morphologies are effective for triboelectric generation.

  11. Self-Assembled Asymmetric Block Copolymer Membranes: Bridging the Gap from Ultra- to Nanofiltration.

    PubMed

    Yu, Haizhou; Qiu, Xiaoyan; Moreno, Nicolas; Ma, Zengwei; Calo, Victor Manuel; Nunes, Suzana P; Peinemann, Klaus-Viktor

    2015-11-16

    The self-assembly of block copolymers is an emerging strategy to produce isoporous ultrafiltration membranes. However, thus far, it has not been possible to bridge the gap from ultra- to nanofiltration and decrease the pore size of self-assembled block copolymer membranes to below 5 nm without post-treatment. It is now reported that the self-assembly of blends of two chemically interacting copolymers can lead to highly porous membranes with pore diameters as small as 1.5 nm. The membrane containing an ultraporous, 60 nm thin separation layer can fully reject solutes with molecular weights of 600 g mol(-1) in aqueous solutions with a water flux that is more than one order of magnitude higher than the permeance of commercial nanofiltration membranes. Simulations of the membrane formation process by dissipative particle dynamics (DPD) were used to explain the dramatic observed pore size reduction combined with an increase in water flux.

  12. Dynamics of a diblock copolymer melt studied via XPCS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mochrie, Simon; Falus, Peter

    2003-03-01

    Measurements will be presented of the equilibrium dynamics of an entangled, asymmetric, PS-PDMS diblock copolymer melt. Specifically, the emerging technique of x-ray photon correlation spectroscopy (XPCS), employing beamline 8-ID of the Advanced Photon Source and a new fast CCD-based x-ray detector, was used to characterize the sample relaxation times for wavevectors spanning the peak of the diblock static structure factor. The results will be compared to available theory. (This work was supported by the NSF via DMR 0071755.)

  13. Tuning metal surface diffusion on diblock copolymer films.

    SciTech Connect

    Darling, S.; Hoffmann, A.

    2007-07-01

    The authors have studied the effect of predeposition electron exposure on the diffusion behavior of silver evaporated on a diblock copolymer template. Unexposed regions display a highly selective adsorption of Ag clusters on the polystyrene domains. Exposure to the electron beam modifies the surface diffusion constants on each polymer block and produces a trend of smaller mean particle sizes with increased dose. While there is a loss of selectivity in this system upon exposure, alternative diblock chemistries or exposure procedures could enable one to engineer the selectivity of desired materials on polymer films.

  14. Effect of Monomer Solubility on the Evolution of Copolymer Morphology during Polymerization-Induced Self-Assembly in Aqueous Solution

    PubMed Central

    2017-01-01

    Polymerization-induced self-assembly (PISA) has become a widely used technique for the rational design of diblock copolymer nano-objects in concentrated aqueous solution. Depending on the specific PISA formulation, reversible addition–fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) aqueous dispersion polymerization typically provides straightforward access to either spheres, worms, or vesicles. In contrast, RAFT aqueous emulsion polymerization formulations often lead to just kinetically-trapped spheres. This limitation is currently not understood, and only a few empirical exceptions have been reported in the literature. In the present work, the effect of monomer solubility on copolymer morphology is explored for an aqueous PISA formulation. Using 2-hydroxybutyl methacrylate (aqueous solubility = 20 g dm–3 at 70 °C) instead of benzyl methacrylate (0.40 g dm–3 at 70 °C) for the core-forming block allows access to an unusual “monkey nut” copolymer morphology over a relatively narrow range of target degrees of polymerization when using a poly(methacrylic acid) RAFT agent at pH 5. These new anisotropic nanoparticles have been characterized by transmission electron microscopy, dynamic light scattering, aqueous electrophoresis, shear-induced polarized light imaging (SIPLI), and small-angle X-ray scattering. PMID:28216792

  15. 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.

  16. Kinetics of directed self-assembly of block copolymers on chemically patterned substrates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Müller, Marcus; Li, Weihua; Orozco Rey, Juan Carlos; Welling, Ulrich

    2015-09-01

    Chemically patterned surfaces have been successfully employed to direct the kinetics of self-assembly of block copolymers into dense, periodic morphologies (”chemoepitaxy”). Significant efforts have been directed towards understanding the kinetics of structure formation and, particularly, the formation and annihilation of defects. In the present manuscript we use computer simulations of a soft, coarse-grained polymer model to study the kinetics of structure formation of lamellar-forming block copolymer thin films on a chemical pattern of lines and spaces. The case where the copolymer material replicates the surface pattern and the more subtle scenario of sparse guiding patterns are considered. Our simulation results highlight (1) the importance of the early stages of pattern-directed self-assembly that template the subsequent morphology and (2) the dependence of the free-energy landscape on the incompatibility between the two blocks of the copolymer.

  17. Strategies for controlling intra- and intermicellar packing in block copolymer solutions: illustrating the flexibility of the self-assembly toolbox.

    PubMed

    Lodge, Timothy L; Bang, Joona; Li, Zhibo; Hillmyer, Marc A; Talmon, Yeshayhu

    2005-01-01

    Block copolymers constitute a class of self-assembling macromolecules that offer remarkable flexibility for controlling nanostructure, both in discrete objects and in bulk materials. Block copolymer micelles may be formed with multiple compartments by judicious choice of ingredients in an ABC triblock copolymer. For example, we have shown that a poly(ethylene oxide-b-styrene-b-fluorinated butadiene) triblock assembles in dilute aqueous solution into large, flat core/shell/corona disks, with the fluorine containing block forming the core. In contrast, the unfluorinated precursor generates large spherical micelles. A numerical analysis suggests that the disk-like motif is characteristic of the so-called superstrong segregation regime, whereby the interfacial tension becomes so large as to overwhelm the conformational entropy of the core blocks. For ABC miktoarm stars comprising polyethylene oxide, polyethylethylene, and polyhexafluoropropylene oxide arms, a much richer variety of micellar structures are observed. Prominent amongst these is a "segmented worm", in which alternating layers (5-7 nm thick) of hydrocarbon and fluorocarbon blocks form disks (6-10 nm in radius) that stack into cylindrical aggregates. The disk radii suggest almost fully stretched blocks, again consistent with the superstrong segregation regime. These structures are rationalized in terms of the constraints imposed by the star architecture, combined with the extremely strong interfacial tensions. In contrast, for lipids, surfactants, and aqueous diblock copolymers, increasing the interfacial tension can induce a transition from spheres to cylinders to flat bilayers; the disk-like motif is not usually seen. Interestingly, in aqueous diblocks both worm-like micelles and vesicles have been well-documented, whereas in "simple" organic systems they have not. We have shown that by suitable choice of block composition and solvent selectivity, the curvature sequence sphere/cylinder/vesicle can also be

  18. The effect of self-assembly conditions on the size of di- and tri-block copolymer micelles: solicitation from response surface methodology.

    PubMed

    Honary, Soheila; Lavasanifar, Afsaneh

    2014-08-27

    Abstract The objective of this study was to assess the application of Response Surface Methodology in defining the effect of self-assembly condition on the average diameter of polymeric micelles. Di- and tri-block copolymers of poly(ethylene oxide)-b-poly(α-benzylcarboxylate-ϵ-caprolactone) (PEO-PBCL) and PBCL-b-poly(ethylene glycol)-b-PBCL (PBCL-PEG-PBCL) were synthesized through ring opening polymerization of α-benzyl-ε-carboxylate using MePEO or dihydroxy PEG as initiator, respectively. Polymeric micelles were formed through solubilization of block copolymers in acetone followed by drop-wise addition of this solution to water. Polymer concentration was changed and the intensity mean diameter of self-assembled structures was measured by dynamic light scattering. The experimental data were fitted to a mathematical model. The experimental conditions leading to the production of micelles of certain size (30, 60 or 90 nm for tri-block and 30 nm for di-block copolymers) was predicted. A good match between predicted and experimental data was observed. The results showed it would be possible to obtain micelles of certain size using block copolymers of different molecular weights or obtain micelles of different size at a given block copolymer molecular weight, by manipulating the polymer concentration. These observations show reproducible micelles of defined average diameter can be prepared by co-solvent evaporation by controlling the used polymer concentration.

  19. Large pore size nanoporous materials from the self-assembly of asymmetric bottlebrush block copolymers.

    PubMed

    Bolton, Justin; Bailey, Travis S; Rzayev, Javid

    2011-03-09

    Asymmetric polystyrene-polylactide (PS-PLA) bottlebrush block copolymers have been shown to self-assemble into a cylindrical morphology with large domain spacings. PLA cylinders can be selectively etched out of the shear-aligned polymer monoliths to generate nanoporous materials with an average cylindrical pore diameter of 55 nm. The remaining bottlebrush backbone provides a functional, hydrophilic coating inside the nanopores. This methodology significantly expands the range of pore sizes attainable in block copolymer based nanoporous materials.

  20. Fluctuations/Correlations in Symmetric Diblock Copolymers: Simulations and Theories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zong, Jing; Yang, Delian; Wang

    2012-02-01

    Modeling symmetric diblock copolymers as discrete Gaussian chains with soft, finite-range repulsions as commonly used in dissipative-particle dynamics simulations, we have performed fast off-lattice Monte Carlo (FOMC) simulations1 in a canonical ensemble with variable box lengths to study the thermodynamic and structural properties of both the disordered and lamellar phases. Our FOMC results for the disordered phase are further compared, without any parameter-fitting, to those from the reference interaction site model (RISM) and the polymer reference interaction site model (PRISM) theories, as well as the Gaussian fluctuation theory, based on the same model system. Such direct 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. [4pt] [1] Q. Wang and Y. Yin, J. Chem. Phys., 130, 104903 (2009).

  1. 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.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  3. 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

  4. Nanoparticle-directed self-assembly of amphiphilic block-copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, So-Jung

    2011-03-01

    The self-assembly of nanoparticles and amphiphilic polymers provides a powerful tool for the fabrication of functional composite materials for a range of applications spanning from nanofabrication to medicine. Here, we present how the incorporation of nanoparticles affects the self-assembly behavior of amphiphilic block-copolymers and how to control the morphology of nanoparticle-encapsulating polymer assemblies. Based on the approach, we have prepared various types of well-defined nanoparticle-encapsulating polymeric nanostructures, including polymersomes packed with magnetic nanoparticles and unique cavity-like quantum dot assembles. We found that the incorporation of nanoparticles drastically affects the self-assembly structure of block-copolymers by modifying the relative volume ratio between the hydrophobic block and the hydrophilic block. In addition, the nanoparticle-polymer and nanoparticle-solvent interactions impact the arrangement and the hybridization of nanoparticles in polymer matrix. These findings should form the basis for the design rules of the self-assembly of nanoparticles and polymer amphiphiles, which will allow one to create new hybrid structures with predesigned morphology and properties. Furthermore, we demonstrated that the morphology of nanoparticle-encapsulating polymer assemblies significantly affects their properties such as magnetic relaxation properties, underscoring the importance of the overall self-assembly structure and the nanoparticle arrangement in polymer matrixes. This work was supported by the NSF career award, the ARO young investigator award, and the MRSEC seed award (University of Pennsylvania).

  5. Thermoreversible Morphology and Conductivity of a Conjugated Polymer Network Embedded in Block Copolymer Self-Assemblies

    SciTech Connect

    Han, Youngkyu; Carrillo, Jan-Michael Y.; Zhang, Zhe; Li, Yunchao; Hong, Kunlun; Sumpter, Bobby G.; Ohl, Michael; Paranthaman, Mariappan Parans; Smith, Gregory S.; Do, Changwoo

    2016-07-19

    Self-assembly of block copolymers provides numerous opportunities to create functional materials, utilizing self-assembled microdomains with a variety of morphology and periodic architectures as templates for functional nanofillers. Here new progress is reported toward the fabrication of thermally responsive and electrically conductive polymeric self-assemblies made from a water-soluble poly(thiophene) derivative with short poly(ethylene oxide) side chains and Pluronic L62 block copolymer solution in water. The structural and electrical properties of conjugated polymer-embedded self-assembled architectures are investigated by combining small-angle neutron and X-ray scattering, coarse-grained molecular dynamics simulations, and impedance spectroscopy. The L62 solution template organizes the conjugated polymers by stably incorporating them into the hydrophilic domains thus inhibiting aggregation. The changing morphology of L62 during the micellarto- lamellar phase transition defines the embedded conjugated polymer network. As a result, the conductivity is strongly coupled to the structural change of the templating L62 phase and exhibits thermally reversible behavior with no signs of quenching of the conductivity at high temperature. In conclusion, this study shows promise for enabling more flexibility in processing and utilizing water-soluble conjugated polymers in aqueous solutions for self-assembly based fabrication of stimuli-responsive nanostructures and sensory materials.

  6. Thermoreversible Morphology and Conductivity of a Conjugated Polymer Network Embedded in Block Copolymer Self-Assemblies

    DOE PAGES

    Han, Youngkyu; Carrillo, Jan-Michael Y.; Zhang, Zhe; ...

    2016-07-19

    Self-assembly of block copolymers provides numerous opportunities to create functional materials, utilizing self-assembled microdomains with a variety of morphology and periodic architectures as templates for functional nanofillers. Here new progress is reported toward the fabrication of thermally responsive and electrically conductive polymeric self-assemblies made from a water-soluble poly(thiophene) derivative with short poly(ethylene oxide) side chains and Pluronic L62 block copolymer solution in water. The structural and electrical properties of conjugated polymer-embedded self-assembled architectures are investigated by combining small-angle neutron and X-ray scattering, coarse-grained molecular dynamics simulations, and impedance spectroscopy. The L62 solution template organizes the conjugated polymers by stably incorporatingmore » them into the hydrophilic domains thus inhibiting aggregation. The changing morphology of L62 during the micellarto- lamellar phase transition defines the embedded conjugated polymer network. As a result, the conductivity is strongly coupled to the structural change of the templating L62 phase and exhibits thermally reversible behavior with no signs of quenching of the conductivity at high temperature. In conclusion, this study shows promise for enabling more flexibility in processing and utilizing water-soluble conjugated polymers in aqueous solutions for self-assembly based fabrication of stimuli-responsive nanostructures and sensory materials.« less

  7. Periodic nanostructures from self assembled wedge-type block-copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    Xia, Yan; Sveinbjornsson, Benjamin R.; Grubbs, Robert H.; Weitekamp, Raymond; Miyake, Garret M.; Piunova, Victoria; Daeffler, Christopher Scot

    2015-06-02

    The invention provides a class of wedge-type block copolymers having a plurality of chemically different blocks, at least a portion of which incorporates a wedge group-containing block providing useful properties. For example, use of one or more wedge group-containing blocks in some block copolymers of the invention significantly inhibits chain entanglement and, thus, the present block copolymers materials provide a class of polymer materials capable of efficient molecular self-assembly to generate a range of structures, such as periodic nanostructures and microstructures. Materials of the present invention include copolymers having one or more wedge group-containing blocks, and optionally for some applications copolymers also incorporating one or more polymer side group-containing blocks. The present invention also provides useful methods of making and using wedge-type block copolymers.

  8. Selective directed self-assembly of coexisting morphologies using block copolymer blends

    SciTech Connect

    Stein, A.; Wright, G.; Yager, K. G.; Doerk, G. S.; Black, C. T.

    2016-08-02

    Directed self-assembly (DSA) of block copolymers is an emergent technique for nano-lithography, but is limited in the range of structures possible in a single fabrication step. We expand on traditional DSA chemical patterning. Moreover, a blend of lamellar- and cylinder-forming block copolymers assembles on specially designed surface chemical line gratings, leading to the simultaneous formation of coexisting ordered morphologies in separate areas of the substrate. The competing energetics of polymer chain distortions and chemical mismatch with the substrate grating bias the system towards either line/space or dot array patterns, depending on the pitch and linewidth of the prepattern. This contrasts with typical DSA, wherein assembly of a single-component block copolymer on chemical templates generates patterns of either lines/spaces (lamellar) or hexagonal dot arrays (cylinders). In our approach, the chemical template encodes desired local spatial arrangements of coexisting design motifs, self-assembled from a single, sophisticated resist.

  9. Selective directed self-assembly of coexisting morphologies using block copolymer blends

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stein, A.; Wright, G.; Yager, K. G.; Doerk, G. S.; Black, C. T.

    2016-08-01

    Directed self-assembly (DSA) of block copolymers is an emergent technique for nano-lithography, but is limited in the range of structures possible in a single fabrication step. Here we expand on traditional DSA chemical patterning. A blend of lamellar- and cylinder-forming block copolymers assembles on specially designed surface chemical line gratings, leading to the simultaneous formation of coexisting ordered morphologies in separate areas of the substrate. The competing energetics of polymer chain distortions and chemical mismatch with the substrate grating bias the system towards either line/space or dot array patterns, depending on the pitch and linewidth of the prepattern. This is in contrast to the typical DSA, wherein assembly of a single-component block copolymer on chemical templates generates patterns of either lines/spaces (lamellar) or hexagonal dot arrays (cylinders). In our approach, the chemical template encodes desired local spatial arrangements of coexisting design motifs, self-assembled from a single, sophisticated resist.

  10. Aqueous Self-Assembly of Y-Shaped Amphiphilic Block Copolymers into Giant Vesicles.

    PubMed

    Li, Hanping; Jin, Yong; Fan, Baozhu; Lai, Shuangquan; Sun, Xiaopeng; Qi, Rui

    2017-02-06

    The preparation and aqueous self-assembly of newly Y-shaped amphiphilic block polyurethane (PUG) copolymers are reported here. These amphiphilic copolymers, designed to have two hydrophilic poly(ethylene oxide) (PEO) tails and one hydrophobic alkyl tail via a two-step coupling reaction, can self-assemble into giant unilamellar vesicles (GUVs) (diameter ≥ 1000 nm) with a direct dissolution method in aqueous solution, depending on their Y-shaped structures and initial concentrations. More interesting, the copolymers can self-assemble into various distinct nano-/microstructures, such as spherical micelles, small vesicles, and GUVs, with the increase of their concentrations. The traditional preparation methods of GUVs generally need conventional amphiphilic molecules and additional complicated conditions, such as alternating electrical field, buffer solution, or organic solvent. Therefore, the self-assembly of Y-shaped PUGs with a direct dissolution method in aqueous solution demonstrated in this study supplies a new clue to fabricate GUVs based on the geometric design of amphiphilic polymers.

  11. Sequential Block Copolymer Self-Assemblies Controlled by Metal-Ligand Stoichiometry.

    PubMed

    Yin, Liyuan; Wu, Hongwei; Zhu, Mingjie; Zou, Qi; Yan, Qiang; Zhu, Liangliang

    2016-06-28

    While numerous efforts have been devoted to developing easy-to-use probes based on block copolymers for detecting analytes due to their advantages in the fields of self-assembly and sensing, a progressive response on block copolymers in response to a continuing chemical event is not readily achievable. Herein, we report the self-assembly of a 4-piperazinyl-1,8-naphthalimide based functional block copolymer (PS-b-PN), whose self-assembly and photophysics can be controlled by the stoichiometry-dependent metal-ligand interaction upon the side chain. The work takes advantages of (1) stoichiometry-controlled coordination-structural transformation of the piperazinyl moiety on PS-b-PN toward Fe(3+) ions, thereby resulting in a shrinkage-expansion conversion of the self-assembled nanostructures in solution as well as in thin film, and (2) stoichiometry-controlled competition between photoinduced electron transfer and spin-orbital coupling process upon naphthalimide fluorophore leading to a boost-decline emission change of the system. Except Fe(3+) ions, such a stoichiometry-dependent returnable property cannot be observed in the presence of other transition ions. The strategy for realizing the dual-channel sequential response on the basis of the progressively alterable nanomorphologies and emissions might provide deeper insights for the further development of advanced polymeric sensors.

  12. Sacrificial-post templating method for block copolymer self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Tavakkoli, Amir K G; Nicaise, Samuel M; Hannon, Adam F; Gotrik, Kevin W; Alexander-Katz, Alfredo; Ross, Caroline A; Berggren, Karl K

    2014-02-12

    A sacrificial-post templating method is presented for directing block copolymer self-assembly to form nanostructures consisting of monolayers and bilayers of microdomains. In this approach, the topographical post template is removed after self-assembly and therefore is not incorporated into the final microdomain pattern. Arrays of nanoscale holes of different shapes and symmetries, including mesh structures and perforated lamellae with a bimodal pore size distribution, are produced. The ratio of the pore sizes in the bimodal distributions can be varied via the template pitch, and agrees with predictions of self consistent field theory.

  13. Homochiral Evolution in Self-Assembled Chiral Polymers and Block Copolymers.

    PubMed

    Wen, Tao; Wang, Hsiao-Fang; Li, Ming-Chia; Ho, Rong-Ming

    2017-03-03

    The significance of chirality transfer is not only involved in biological systems, such as the origin of homochiral structures in life but also in man-made chemicals and materials. How the chiral bias transfers from molecular level (molecular chirality) to helical chain (conformational chirality) and then to helical superstructure or phase (hierarchical chirality) from self-assembly is vital for the chemical and biological processes in nature, such as communication, replication, and enzyme catalysis. In this Account, we summarize the methodologies for the examination of homochiral evolution at different length scales based on our recent studies with respect to the self-assembly of chiral polymers and chiral block copolymers (BCPs*). A helical (H*) phase to distinguish its P622 symmetry from that of normal hexagonally packed cylinder phase was discovered in the self-assembly of BCPs* due to the chirality effect on BCP self-assembly. Enantiomeric polylactide-containing BCPs*, polystyrene-b-poly(l-lactide) (PS-PLLA) and polystyrene-b-poly(d-lactide) (PS-PDLA), were synthesized for the examination of homochiral evolution. The optical activity (molecular chirality) of constituted chiral repeating unit in the chiral polylactide is detected by electronic circular dichroism (ECD) whereas the conformational chirality of helical polylactide chain can be explicitly determined by vibrational circular dichroism (VCD). The H* phases of the self-assembled polylactide-containing BCPs* can be directly visualized by 3D transmission electron microscopy (3D TEM) technique at which the handedness (hierarchical chirality) of the helical nanostructure is thus determined. The results from the ECD, VCD, and 3D TEM for the investigated chirality at different length scales suggest the homochiral evolution in the self-assembly of the BCPs*. For chiral polylactides, twisted lamellae in crystalline banded spherulite can be formed by dense packing scheme and effective interactions upon helical

  14. Polymerization of hydrogels inside self-assembled block copolymer vesicles.

    PubMed

    Gaspard, Jeffery; Hahn, Mariah S; Silas, James A

    2009-11-17

    Block copolymer vesicles are powerful tools for investigating cell adhesion since they display the fluid, deformable, semipermeable membrane properties of lipid vesicles while having greater chemical and mechanical stability. The aim of the present study was to fabricate block copolymer vesicles containing hydrogel interiors in order to extend achievable vesicle properties and, thereby, their range of cell-like behaviors. Block copolymer vesicles based on poly(butadiene-b-ethylene oxide) were demonstrated to compartmentalize and retain acrylamide solutions through particle dialysis and to allow for subsequent in situ hydrogel polymerization. Small molecule leakage studies of the resulting particles indicated that the cross-link density of the hydrogel interiors had minimal impact on vesicle permeability to small molecules (<430 Da) relative to vesicle membrane properties. In contrast, particle deformation analyses indicated that initial vesicle surface approach and adhesion was dominated by its membrane properties, whereas its ultimate deformation was primarily governed by the hydrogel interior. Thus, the hydrogel-containing vesicles allowed orthogonal control of particle surface and mechanical properties. Analysis of particle behavior in terms of Gibb's free energy minimization indicated that vesicle adhesion energy, membrane tension, and internal osmotic pressure dominated particle adhesion and deformation. Combined, the present work demonstrates the potential for designing compartmentalized, hierarchical polymer-based cell mimics with broadly tunable dynamic-mechanical properties and surface properties.

  15. 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.

  16. Process-directed self-assembly of block copolymers: a computer simulation study.

    PubMed

    Müller, Marcus; Sun, De-Wen

    2015-05-20

    The free-energy landscape of self-assembling block copolymer systems is characterized by a multitude of metastable minima and concomitant protracted relaxation times of the morphology. Tailoring rapid changes (quench) of thermodynamic conditions, one can reproducibly trap the ensuing kinetics of self-assembly in a specific metastable state. To this end, it is necessary to (1) control the generation of well-defined, highly unstable states and (2) design the unstable state such that the ensuing spontaneous kinetics of structure formation reaches the desired metastable morphology. This process-directed self-assembly provides an alternative to fine-tuning molecular architecture by synthesis or blending, for instance, in order to fabricate complex network structures. Comparing our simulation results to recently developed free-energy techniques, we highlight the importance of non-equilibrium molecular conformations in the starting state and motivate the significance of the local conservation of density.

  17. Correlating self-assembly of block copolymers for their application in synthesis of gold nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Ray, Debes; Aswall, Vinod Kumar; Srivastava, Dinesh

    2011-03-01

    We report the role of self-assembly of polyethylene oxide-polypropylene oxide-polyethylene oxide (PEO-PPO-PEO) block copolymers for the synthesis of gold nanoparticles from hydrogen tetrachloroaureate (III) hydrate (HAuCl4 x 3H2O) in aqueous solution. The synthesis has been carried out using three different block copolymers P85 [EO26PO39EO26], F88 [EO103PO39EO103] and P105 [EO37PO56EO37], which not only have varying molecular weight but also differ in hydrophobicity to hydrophilicity ratio. The formation of gold nanoparticles is confirmed by the UV-Visible Spectroscopy. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) provides the sizes of the nanoparticles formed in these systems. Small-Angle Neutron Scattering (SANS) and Dynamic Light Scattering (DLS) techniques are used to correlate the self-assembly of block copolymer to their propensity to form gold nanoparticles. The yield is found to be in the order P105 > P85 > F88 and is related to the higher tendency of block copolymer to self-assemble to give greater yield of gold nanoparticles. For all the block copolymers, SANS and DLS results suggests that the yield in the synthesis does not always increases with the salt concentration and is limited due to the fact that most of the block copolymers remain unassociated with the gold nanoparticles. By making use of these unassociated block copolymers, we propose two methods (i) step addition method and (ii) additional reductant method, where the synthesis yield of gold nanoparticles can be enhanced by manifold.

  18. Universality between Experiment and Simulation of a Diblock Copolymer Melt.

    PubMed

    Beardsley, Thomas M; Matsen, Mark W

    2016-11-18

    The equivalent behavior among analogous block copolymer systems involving chemically distinct molecules or mathematically different models has long hinted at an underlying universality, but only recently has it been rigorously demonstrated by matching results from different simulations. The profound implication of universality is that simple coarse-grained models can be calibrated so as to provide quantitatively accurate predictions to experiment. Here, we provide the first compelling demonstration of this by simulating a polyisoprene-polylactide diblock copolymer melt using a previously calibrated lattice model. The simulation successfully predicts the peak in the disordered-state structure function, the position of the order-disorder transition, and the latent heat of the transition in excellent quantitative agreement with experiment. This could mark a new era of precision in the field of block copolymer research.

  19. Universality between Experiment and Simulation of a Diblock Copolymer Melt

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beardsley, Thomas M.; Matsen, Mark W.

    2016-11-01

    The equivalent behavior among analogous block copolymer systems involving chemically distinct molecules or mathematically different models has long hinted at an underlying universality, but only recently has it been rigorously demonstrated by matching results from different simulations. The profound implication of universality is that simple coarse-grained models can be calibrated so as to provide quantitatively accurate predictions to experiment. Here, we provide the first compelling demonstration of this by simulating a polyisoprene-polylactide diblock copolymer melt using a previously calibrated lattice model. The simulation successfully predicts the peak in the disordered-state structure function, the position of the order-disorder transition, and the latent heat of the transition in excellent quantitative agreement with experiment. This could mark a new era of precision in the field of block copolymer research.

  20. Nanoscale arrangement of diblock copolymer micelles with Au nanorods

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Hwan; Lim, Yirang; Kim, Sehee; Kim, Sung-Soo; Sohn, Byeong-Hyeok

    2014-11-01

    We fabricated a single-layered film consisting of spherical micelles of diblock copolymers and one-dimensional Au nanorods that were surface modified with the same polymer as the corona block of the copolymers. When the diameters of micelles were larger than the lengths of the nanorods, spherical micelles arranged in a hexagonal configuration surrounded by nanorods with their long axes perpendicular to the radial direction of the micelles. This arrangement provided selective organization of the Au nanorods and Ag nanoparticles which were selectively synthesized within the cores of the copolymer micelles. Thus, position-selective arrangement of Au nanorods and Ag nanoparticles was demonstrated at the nanometer scale such that a homogenous distribution of two different nanomaterials over a large area without aggregation was achieved.

  1. Terminal groups control self-assembly of amphiphilic block copolymers in solution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grzelakowski, M.; Kita-Tokarczyk, K.

    2016-03-01

    The terminal groups of amphiphilic block copolymers are shown to control macromolecular self-assembly in aqueous solutions, in the micellar/lamellar region of the phase diagram. At the same concentration and using the same self-assembly conditions, dramatic differences are observed in polymer hydration and the resulting nano-/microstructure for two series of polymers with identical block chemistry and hydrophilic-lipophilic balance (HLB). This suggests a strong contribution from end groups to the hydration as the initial step of the self-assembly process, and could be conveniently used to guide the particle morphology and size. Additionally, for polymers with those head groups which drive vesicular structures, differences in membrane organization affect their physical properties, such as permeability.The terminal groups of amphiphilic block copolymers are shown to control macromolecular self-assembly in aqueous solutions, in the micellar/lamellar region of the phase diagram. At the same concentration and using the same self-assembly conditions, dramatic differences are observed in polymer hydration and the resulting nano-/microstructure for two series of polymers with identical block chemistry and hydrophilic-lipophilic balance (HLB). This suggests a strong contribution from end groups to the hydration as the initial step of the self-assembly process, and could be conveniently used to guide the particle morphology and size. Additionally, for polymers with those head groups which drive vesicular structures, differences in membrane organization affect their physical properties, such as permeability. Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available: Fig. S1: Particle diameters for hydrated NH2-ABA-NH2 polymers with different degrees of functionalization; Fig. S2: TEM characterization of compound micelles from BA-OH polymer after extrusion; Fig. S3: Cryo-TEM and stopped flow characterization of lipid vesicles; Fig. S4 and S5: NMR spectra for ABA and BA polymers

  2. Controlled self-assembly of conjugated rod-coil block copolymers for applications in organic optoelectronics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tao, Yuefei

    Organic electronics are of great interest in manufacturing light weight, mechanical flexible, and inexpensive large area devices. While significant improvements have been made over the last several years and it is now clear that morphology on the lengthscale of exciton diffusion (10nm) is of crucial importance, a clear relationship between structure and device properties has not emerged. This lack of understanding largely emerges from an inability to control morphology on this lengthscale. This thesis will center around an approach, based on block copolymer self-assembly, to generate equilibrium nanostructures on the 10 nm lengthscale of exciton diffusion and study their effects on device performance. Self-assembly of semiconducting block copolymers is complicated by the non-classical chain shape of conjugated polymers. Unlike classical polymers, the chains do not assume a Gaussian coil shape which is stretched near block copolymer interfaces, instead the chains are elongated and liquid crystalline. Previous work has demonstrated how these new molecular interactions and shapes control the phase diagram of so-called rod-coil block copolymers. Here, we will focus on controlling domain size, orientation, and chemical structure. While domain size can be controlled directly through molecular weight, this requires significant additional synthesis of domain size is to be varied. Here, the domain size is controlled by blending homopolymers into a self-assembling rod-coil block copolymer. When coil-like blocks are incorporated, the domains swell, as expected. When rod-like blocks are incorporated, they interdigitate with the rods of the block copolymers. This results in an increase in interfacial area which forces the coils to rearrange and an overall decrease in domain size with increasing rod content. Control over lamellar orientation is crucial in order to design and control charge transport pathways and exciton recombination or separation interfaces. While numerous

  3. Self-Assembled Morphologies of Linear and Miktoarm Star Triblock Copolymer Monolayers.

    PubMed

    Deng, Hanlin; Li, Weihua; Qiu, Feng; Shi, An-Chang

    2017-04-12

    Monolayers of linear and miktoarm star ABC triblock copolymers with equal A and C blocks are investigated using the self-consistent field theory. The monolayers of ABC triblock copolymers are formed between two parallel surfaces that are attractive to the A and C blocks. The repulsive interaction parameter $\\chi_{AC}N$ between the A and C blocks is chosen to be weaker than the A/B and B/C interactions, quantified by $\\chi_{AB}N$ and $\\chi_{BC}N$, such that the B blocks are confined at the A/C interface, resulting in various B-domains with different geometries and arrangements. It is observed that two variables, the strength of the surface fields and the film thickness, are dominant factors controlling the self-assembly of the B blocks into various morphologies. For the linear triblock copolymers, the morphologies of B domains include disks, stripes (parallel cylinders), and hexagonal network (inverse disks). For the miktoarm star triblock copolymers, the competition between the tendency to align the junction points along a straight line and the constraint on their arrangement from the surface interactions leads to richer ordered morphologies. As a result of packing the junction points of the ABC miktoarm star copolymers, a counterintuitive phase sequence from low curvature phases to high curvature phases with increasing the length of B block is predicted. The study indicates that the self-assembly of monolayers of ABC triblock copolymers provides an interesting platform to engineer novel morphologies.

  4. The effect of hydrophilic and hydrophobic block length on the rheology of amphiphilic diblock Polystyrene-b-Poly(sodium methacrylate) copolymers prepared by ATRP.

    PubMed

    Raffa, Patrizio; Stuart, Marc C A; Broekhuis, Antonius A; Picchioni, Francesco

    2014-08-15

    Following our previous investigation on the effect of molecular architecture on the rheology of Polystyrene-b-Poly(sodium methacrylate) copolymers (PS-b-PMAA), we consider here diblock PS-b-PMAA copolymers characterized by a different length of either the hydrophilic or the hydrophobic block. Various copolymers characterized by different PS or PMAA block length have been prepared by ATRP (kinetics is also discussed) and studied from the point of view of their rheological behaviour in water. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first systematic investigation concerning the effect of block length on the rheology of diblock polyelectrolytes. We found that the hydrophobic block length has small influence on the rheology. Surprisingly, the polymers with shortest PMAA blocks yield the strongest gels at high concentration. A simple model based on the classical theories of self-assembly and percolation of amphiphilic polymers has been here developed in order to explain the observed data.

  5. Synthesis and Self-Assembly of Rod2Coil Miktoarm Star Copolymers of Poly(3-dodecxylthiophene) and Poly(methyl methacrylate) with high rod fractions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, Jicheol; Moon, Hong Chul; Choi, Chung-Royng; Kim, Jin Kon

    2015-03-01

    Poly(3-dodecylthiophene)-b-poly(methyl methacrylate) diblock copolymer (P3DDT- b-PMMA) can self-assembled into various microdomains such as spheres, cylinders, and lamellae depending on weight fraction of P3DDT. However, only filbril morphology was formed when weight fraction of P3DDT (wP 3 DDT) was major (wP 3 DDT ~ 0.76). Here, we introduce a new approach to obtain microdomain structures even at high wP 3 DDT by using well-defined A2B miktoarm star copolymer composed of P3DDT and PMMA ((P3DDT)2PMMA. We found via small angle X-ray scattering and transmission electron microscopy that (P3DDT)2PMMA showed PMMA cylinder packed hexagonally in the matrix of P3DDT and body-centered-cubic spheres of PMMA for wP 3 DDT of 0.66 and 0.75, respectively. This because of much reduction of the rod-rod interaction in (P3DDT)2PMMA compared with P3DDT- b-PMMA diblock copolymers.

  6. Self-assembly of miktoarm star-like ABn block copolymers: from wet to dry brushes.

    PubMed

    Xu, Yuci; Wang, Chao; Zhong, Shuo; Li, Weihua; Lin, Zhiqun

    2015-03-10

    Self-assembly of miktoarm star-like ABn block copolymer in both selective solvent (A- or B-selective) and miscible homopolymer matrix (A or B homopolymer), that is, formation of micelles, was for the first time investigated by theoretical calculations based on self-consistent mean field theory. Interestingly, the calculation revealed that the size of micelles in solvent was smaller than that in homopolymer under the same conditions. In B-selective solvent, with increasing number of B blocks n in miktoarm star-like ABn block copolymer at a fixed volume fraction of A block, the micellar size decreased gradually. In stark contrast, when miktoarm star-like ABn block copolymer dissolved in B homopolymer matrix at molecular weight ratio of B homopolymer to ABn block copolymer fH = 0.30, the overall micellar size decreased nonmonotonically as the number of B blocks n in ABn block copolymer increased. The largest micelle was formed in AB2 (i.e., n = 2). This intriguing finding can be attributed to a wet-to-dry brush transition that occurred from n = 1 to n = 2 in the micellization of miktoarm star-like ABn block copolymer. Moreover, the micellization behaviors of miktoarm star-like ABn block copolymer in A-selective solvent and A homopolymer matrix were also explored, where the overall micellar size in both scenarios was found to decrease monotonically as n in ABn block copolymer increased. These self-assembled nanostructures composed of miktoarm star-like ABn block copolymers may promise a wide range of applications in size-dependent drug delivery and bionanotechnology.

  7. Synthesis and Characterization of Stimuli Responsive Block Copolymers, Self-Assembly Behavior and Applications

    SciTech Connect

    Determan, Michael Duane

    2005-12-17

    The central theme of this thesis work is to develop new block copolymer materials for biomedical applications. While there are many reports of stimuli-responsive amphiphilic [19-21] and crosslinked hydrogel materials [22], the development of an in situ gel forming, pH responsive pentablock copolymer is a novel contribution to the field, Figure 1.1 is a sketch of an ABCBA pentablock copolymer. The A blocks are cationic tertiary amine methacrylates blocked to a central Pluronic F127 triblock copolymer. In addition to the prerequisite synthetic and macromolecular characterization of these new materials, the self-assembled supramolecular structures formed by the pentablock were experimentally evaluated. This synthesis and characterization process serves to elucidate the important structure property relationships of these novel materials, The pH and temperature responsive behavior of the pentablock copolymer were explored especially with consideration towards injectable drug delivery applications. Future synthesis work will focus on enhancing and tuning the cell specific targeting of DNA/pentablock copolymer polyplexes. The specific goals of this research are: (1) Develop a synthetic route for gel forming pentablock block copolymers with pH and temperature sensitive properties. Synthesis of these novel copolymers is accomplished with ATRP, yielding low polydispersity and control of the block copolymer architecture. Well defined macromolecular characteristics are required to tailor the phase behavior of these materials. (2) Characterize relationship between the size and shape of pentablock copolymer micelles and gel structure and the pH and temperature of the copolymer solutions with SAXS, SANS and CryoTEM. (3) Evaluate the temperature and pH induced phase separation and macroscopic self-assembly phenomenon of the pentablock copolymer. (4) Utilize the knowledge gained from first three goals to design and formulate drug delivery formulations based on the multi

  8. Charged Diblock Copolymers at Interfaces: Micelle Dissociation Upon Compression

    SciTech Connect

    Theodoly, O.; Checco, A; Muller, P

    2010-01-01

    We use grazing incidence X-ray scattering to study the surface micellization of charged amphiphilic diblock copolymers poly(styrene-block-acrylic acid) at the air-water interface. Scattering interference peaks are consistent with the formation of hexagonally packed micelles. The remarkable increase of inter-micelle distance upon compression is explained by a dissociation of micelles into a brush. Hence, surface micelles reorganize, whereas micelles of the same copolymers in solutions are 'frozen'. We show indeed that the energetic cost of unimer extraction from micelles is much lower for surface than for solution. Finally, a model combining electrostatic interactions and micelle/brush equilibrium explains surface pressure vs. area without free parameters.

  9. Stabilization of Bicontinuous Phases in Diblock Copolymer Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Escobedo, Fernando; Martinez-Veracoechea, Francisco

    2009-03-01

    We used a coarse-grained description of the copolymer chains (i.e., dissipative particle dynamics fluid), together with continuum-space Monte Carlo and Molecular Dynamics methods, to study systems of diblock copolymers melts that have been ``filled'' with selective additives (i.e., homopolymer, and nanoparticles). Approximate phase boundaries were found via free-energy calculations. We focus on the stabilization of bi-continuous phases and the strikingly different phase behavior observed when the nature of the selective filler is changed. Our results elucidate the origins of the packing frustration that limits the viability of the gyroid, double-diamond, and plumber's nightmare phases and provide insights for overcoming it. Attention is also focused on directly determining the areas of phase diagram where macro- phase separation occurs. We compare the particle-based simulation results with the results obtained by means of self- consistent filed theory calculations.

  10. 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

  11. Rapid self-assembly of brush block copolymers to photonic crystals.

    PubMed

    Sveinbjörnsson, Benjamin R; Weitekamp, Raymond A; Miyake, Garret M; Xia, Yan; Atwater, Harry A; Grubbs, Robert H

    2012-09-04

    The reduced chain entanglement of brush polymers over their linear analogs drastically lowers the energetic barriers to reorganization. In this report, we demonstrate the rapid self-assembly of brush block copolymers to nanostructures with photonic bandgaps spanning the entire visible spectrum, from ultraviolet (UV) to near infrared (NIR). Linear relationships were observed between the peak wavelengths of reflection and polymer molecular weights. This work enables "bottom-up" fabrication of photonic crystals with application-tailored bandgaps, through synthetic control of the polymer molecular weight and the method of self-assembly. These polymers could be developed into NIR-reflective paints, to combat the "urban heat island effect" due to NIR photon thermalization.

  12. Block copolymer self-assembly-directed synthesis of mesoporous gyroidal superconductors.

    PubMed

    Robbins, Spencer W; Beaucage, Peter A; Sai, Hiroaki; Tan, Kwan Wee; Werner, Jörg G; Sethna, James P; DiSalvo, Francis J; Gruner, Sol M; Van Dover, Robert B; Wiesner, Ulrich

    2016-01-01

    Superconductors with periodically ordered mesoporous structures are expected to have properties very different from those of their bulk counterparts. Systematic studies of such phenomena to date are sparse, however, because of a lack of versatile synthetic approaches to such materials. We demonstrate the formation of three-dimensionally continuous gyroidal mesoporous niobium nitride (NbN) superconductors from chiral ABC triblock terpolymer self-assembly-directed sol-gel-derived niobium oxide with subsequent thermal processing in air and ammonia gas. Superconducting materials exhibit a critical temperature (T c) of about 7 to 8 K, a flux exclusion of about 5% compared to a dense NbN solid, and an estimated critical current density (J c) of 440 A cm(-2) at 100 Oe and 2.5 K. We expect block copolymer self-assembly-directed mesoporous superconductors to provide interesting subjects for mesostructure-superconductivity correlation studies.

  13. Self-assembly of block copolymers on lithographically patterned template with ordered posts.

    PubMed

    Xu, Dan; Liu, Hong; Xue, Yao-Hong; Sun, Yan-Bo

    2015-12-21

    Dissipative particle dynamics simulations are employed to study the self-assembly of block copolymers on a template modified with ordered posts. Templates with hexagonally arranged and rectangularly arranged posts are both studied. For the systems with hexagonally arranged posts, morphologies with bending alignments are seen most often. We find that the different kinds of patterns, which can be directly observed in experiments, are substantially induced by the pattern of the bottom layer. In the simulations with a template modified with rectangularly arranged posts, by finely adjusting the distances between neighboring posts in both x and y directions, mesh-shaped structures with different angles between the bottom and the sub-bottom layers can be obtained. These results shed light on the better design of lithographically patterned materials on the scale of 10 nm via the directed self-assembly of BCPs by templating.

  14. Thermal analysis study of polysterene-poly(methyl methacrylate) (PS-PMMA) diblock copolymer thin films morphologies when annealed and sheared under vacuum in inert atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pomales, Luis; Davila-Santana, Melissa; Rivera-Claudio, Mirna; Vedrine-Pauleus, Josee

    2011-03-01

    Diblock copolymers are made of two chemically bonded blocks, with incompatible monomers. This incompatibility gives the block the property to phase separate at temperatures above the glass transition (Tg). The ability to self-assemble into different mesophase structures is of great importance in nanolithography and nanofabrication. This research involves the morphological study of PS-PMMA thin films annealed under inert atmosphere. Our objective is to determine the microstructure properties of the PS-PMMA diblock copolymer as a function of film thickness, annealing temperature, and applied shear force. The PS-PMMA thin film is spin casted onto silicon substrates, and annealed under an inert atmosphere. Our initial results show that the samples have an incomplete formation of the microstructures. However, further film analysis is needed to study the morphological properties when annealed. Futures studies will focus on the effects of a shear force during annealing, to align the film microstructures.

  15. Developing directly photodefinable substrate guiding layers for block copolymer directed self-assembly (DSA) patterning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheng, Jing; Lawson, Richard A.; Yeh, Wei-Ming; Tolbert, Laren M.; Henderson, Clifford L.

    2011-04-01

    Directed self-assembly (DSA) of block copolymers has gained significant attention in recent years as a possible alternative for large area fabrication of future sub-30 nm lithographic patterns. To achieve this patterning, at least three critical pieces are needed: (1) a block copolymer with sufficient immiscibility of the two blocks to drive phase separation at the low molecular weights required to achieve such small phase domains, (2) a method for selectively removing one of the blocks after phase separation to achieve formation of a relief pattern, and (3) a method for producing the templated surfaces used to guide and register the phase separated patterns on the substrate of interest. Current methods for achieving the patterned substrate template, whether they are of chemoepitaxial or graphoepitaxial nature, are generally complex involving a large number of steps that are not easily applied to a variety of different substrate surfaces. For example, numerous substrates have been studied to provide neutral wettability to the styrene-methacrylate (PS-b- PMMA) block copolymers, such as random styrene-methacrylate copolymer films (PS-r-PMMA) or self-assembled monolayer (SAM) modified surfaces, which induce perpendicularly oriented morphologies for PS-b-PMMA self-assembly. In the case of chemical epitaxy processes, a layer of photoresist is generally then coated on such neutral substrate films and patterned to render commensurability to the periodicity of the PS-b-PMMA being used. The open (i.e. space) regions in the resist are then exposed to alter their chemistry, e.g. soft X-ray or oxygen plasma exposures have been used, to achieve hydrophilicity which should preferentially wet PMMA. Finally, the resist is stripped and the block copolymer is coated and assembled on the template surface. Obviously such multi-step processes would not be preferred if alternatives existed. As a step toward that goal of making DSA processes simpler, a photodefinable substrate film that

  16. Simulation study of the effect of differences in block energy and density on the self-assembly of block copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lawson, Richard A.; Peters, Andrew J.; Nation, Benjamin; Ludovice, Peter J.; Henderson, Clifford L.

    2014-03-01

    Implementation of directed self-assembly (DSA) of block copolymers (BCPs) introduces a series of engineering challenges that have not been completely addressed in previous block copolymer and lithography studies. One of the required innovations for further DSA development and implementation is the accurate simulation of specific block copolymer chemistries and their interactions with interfaces. Many of the BCP simulation tools developed so far have limitations or difficulty in terms of matching many of the common issues found in experimental BCP systems such as polydispersity and different statistical segment lengths. One of the potentially most important issues is the fact that real BCPs often have block energy and/or density asymmetry, meaning that each block has a different homopolymer density and/or cohesive energy density (CED). A simulation of BCP behavior and DSA processes based on molecular dynamics (MD) of coarse-grained polymer chains has been developed that can independently parameterize and control the density and CED of each block to more accurately match the asymmetry found in experimental BCPs. This model was used to study the effect of block asymmetry on the order-disorder transition (ODT), domain scaling, and self-assembly of thin films of BCPs. BCPs whose blocks each have a different density show deviations from the mean-field ODT coexistence curve, exhibiting an order-disorder transition or co-existence curve that is asymmetric with shifts and tilts in the direction of majority highest density block. This impact of density and cohesive energy differences diblock copolymers on their phase behavior can explain some of the unexpected shapes found experimentally in BCP ODT curves. Asymmetry in the BCP block energy or density does not appear to have a significant effect on domain scaling behavior compared to the mean-field estimates. Self-assembly of thin films of BCPs with mismatches in CED shows significant deviations in the expected morphologies

  17. Selective directed self-assembly of coexisting morphologies using block copolymer blends

    PubMed Central

    Stein, A.; Wright, G.; Yager, K. G.; Doerk, G. S.; Black, C. T.

    2016-01-01

    Directed self-assembly (DSA) of block copolymers is an emergent technique for nano-lithography, but is limited in the range of structures possible in a single fabrication step. Here we expand on traditional DSA chemical patterning. A blend of lamellar- and cylinder-forming block copolymers assembles on specially designed surface chemical line gratings, leading to the simultaneous formation of coexisting ordered morphologies in separate areas of the substrate. The competing energetics of polymer chain distortions and chemical mismatch with the substrate grating bias the system towards either line/space or dot array patterns, depending on the pitch and linewidth of the prepattern. This is in contrast to the typical DSA, wherein assembly of a single-component block copolymer on chemical templates generates patterns of either lines/spaces (lamellar) or hexagonal dot arrays (cylinders). In our approach, the chemical template encodes desired local spatial arrangements of coexisting design motifs, self-assembled from a single, sophisticated resist. PMID:27480327

  18. Selective directed self-assembly of coexisting morphologies using block copolymer blends

    DOE PAGES

    Stein, A.; Wright, G.; Yager, K. G.; ...

    2016-08-02

    Directed self-assembly (DSA) of block copolymers is an emergent technique for nano-lithography, but is limited in the range of structures possible in a single fabrication step. We expand on traditional DSA chemical patterning. Moreover, a blend of lamellar- and cylinder-forming block copolymers assembles on specially designed surface chemical line gratings, leading to the simultaneous formation of coexisting ordered morphologies in separate areas of the substrate. The competing energetics of polymer chain distortions and chemical mismatch with the substrate grating bias the system towards either line/space or dot array patterns, depending on the pitch and linewidth of the prepattern. This contrastsmore » with typical DSA, wherein assembly of a single-component block copolymer on chemical templates generates patterns of either lines/spaces (lamellar) or hexagonal dot arrays (cylinders). In our approach, the chemical template encodes desired local spatial arrangements of coexisting design motifs, self-assembled from a single, sophisticated resist.« less

  19. Effect of Chemical Oxidation on the Self-Assembly of Organometallic Block Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eitouni, Hany

    2005-03-01

    The thermodynamic interactions in ferrocenyldimethylsilane diblock copolymers were systematically adjusted by oxidation of the ferrocene moiety with silver nitrate and examined using small angle x-ray scattering and depolarized light scattering. The polymers retained microphase separated ordered structures upon oxidation and showed systematic changes in the location of the order-disorder transition as a function of ferrocenium nitrate content. The extent of oxidation can be controlled locally through electrochemical techniques and hence ordered and disordered regions can be maintained within a sample. By controlling the redox properties of the ferrocene moiety in the backbone of the polymer, we have provided a novel method of controlling microstructure and hence bulk properties.

  20. Self-assembly of Si-containing block copolymers with high-segregation strength: toward sub-10nm features in directed self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reboul, C.; Fleury, G.; Aissou, K.; Brochon, C.; Cloutet, E.; Nicolet, C.; Chevalier, X.; Navarro, C.; Tiron, R.; Cunge, G.; Hadziioannou, G.

    2014-03-01

    Ordered microstructures with nanometrically defined periodicity offer promising opportunities in microelectronic applications for the production of advanced CMOS digital logic circuits. To produce the features and arrays inherent to such technologies, the combination of the "bottom-up" block copolymer self-assembly with "top-down" guiding templates has been successfully introduced leading to new technological breakthroughs. Among the materials used in the direct self-assembly methodology, poly(styrene-b-methylmethacrylate) systems have reached an unprecedented level of maturity which will lead to their introduction into the next technological nodes. However, this system suffers from deficiencies such as a low Flory Huggins parameter (X = 0.04 at 25°C) and a low chemical contrast as regards to the etching processes which could be problematic for targeting sub-22 nm features. Consequently we have developed new systems based on Si-containing block copolymers which are characterized by high segregation strength as well as strong chemical etching contrast. In this contribution, we focus on a poly(lactic acid) / poly(dimethylsiloxane) system exhibiting a cylindrical mesostructure. By controlling the surface energy at the interface between the substrate and the block copolymer domains, we show the possibility to control the orientation of the mesostructure with a methodology comparable to the one used for poly(styrene) / poly(methyl methacrylate) system but with random copolymers having distinct monomers than the block copolymers.

  1. Self-assembled ferromagnetic and superparamagnetic structures of hybrid Fe block copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sarantopoulou, E.; Kovač, J.; Pispas, S.; Kobe, S.; Kollia, Z.; Cefalas, A. C.

    2008-10-01

    Self-assembled 2D structures on thin films of block copolymers/Fe hybrid materials were fabricated on Si/Ta substrates, either by wet chemistry or laser irradiation at 157 nm. The polymer exhibits micelle-like structures with average dimensions of 5-10 nm and 30-50 nm for light and chemically reduced films respectively. For the laser processed films, SQUID measurements reveal a ferromagnetic response at 5 K, and 100 Oe coercivity was obtained for 2:1 iron concentration. For chemically reduced films, on the other hand, a superparamagnetic response with near zero coercivity at 5 K was obtained.

  2. Architectural Effects on Solution Self-Assembly of Poly(3-hexylthiophene)-Based Graft Copolymers.

    PubMed

    Kim, Youngkwon; Kim, Hyeong Jun; Kim, Jin-Seong; Hayward, Ryan C; Kim, Bumjoon J

    2017-01-25

    While solution assembly of conjugated block copolymers has been widely used to produce long 1-D nanowires (NWs), it remains a great challenge to provide a higher level of control over structure and function of the NWs. Herein, for the first time, we report the solution assembly of graft copolymers containing a conjugated polymer backbone in a selective solvent and demonstrate that their self-assembly behaviors can be manipulated by the molecular structures of the graft copolymers. A series of poly(3-hexylthiophene)-graft-poly(2-vinylpyridine) (P3HT-g-P2VP) copolymers was designed with two different architectural parameters: grafting fraction (fg) and molecular weight of P2VP chains (Mn,P2VP) on the P3HT backbone. Interestingly, crystallization of the P3HT-g-P2VP copolymers was systematically modulated by changes in fg and Mn,P2VP, thus allowing for control of the growth kinetics and curvatures of solution-assembled NWs. When Mn,P2VP (4.4 to 15.1 kg/mol) or fg (2.8 to 9.2%) of the P3HT-g-P2VP polymers was increased, the crystallinity of the copolymers was reduced significantly. Steric hindrance from the grafted P2VP chains apparently modified the growth of NWs, leading to shorter NWs with a greater degree of curvature for graft copolymers with more hindrance. Therefore, we envision that such conjugated chain-based graft copolymers can be versatile building blocks for producing NWs with controlled length and shape, which can be important for tailoring the optical and electrical properties of NW-based devices.

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. Filtration on block copolymer solution used in directed self assembly lithography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Umeda, Toru; Takakura, Tomoyuki; Tsuzuki, Shuichi

    2016-03-01

    In this paper, we presented the filtration effects on block copolymers (BCP) that are commonly used in directed self-assembly lithographic (DSAL) imaging schemes. Specifically we focused on filtration effects on micro-contaminants such as metal ions and metal induced gels. Gel removal efficiency studies carried out with HDPE, Nylon and PTFE filters pointed out that Nylon 6,6 membrane is the most effective in removing gels in block copolymer (BCP) solutions. Metal removal efficiency studies were conducted using multistep filtrations such as repetitive filtration of single membrane material and combination of different type of membranes. Results showed that a combination of Nylon-6,6 and ion-exchange filters is highly effective in reducing metals such as Li, Mg and Al to > 99.99% efficiency. The mechanism of metal removal efficiency is discussed in detail.

  6. Modeling and self-assembly behavior of PEG-PLA-PEG triblock copolymers in aqueous solution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Xiaohan; Li, Suming; Coumes, Fanny; Darcos, Vincent; Lai Kee Him, Joséphine; Bron, Patrick

    2013-09-01

    A series of poly(ethylene glycol)-polylactide-poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG-PLA-PEG) triblock copolymers with symmetric or asymmetric chain structures were synthesized by combination of ring-opening polymerization and copper-catalyzed click chemistry. The resulting copolymers were used to prepare self-assembled aggregates by dialysis. Various architectures such as nanotubes, polymersomes and spherical micelles were observed from transmission electron microscopy (TEM), cryo-TEM and atomic force microscopy (AFM) measurements. The formation of diverse aggregates is explained by modeling from the angle of both geometry and thermodynamics. From the angle of geometry, a ``blob'' model based on the Daoud-Cotton model for star polymers is proposed to describe the aggregate structures and structural changes with copolymer composition and molar mass. In fact, the copolymer chains extend in aqueous medium to form single layer polymersomes to minimize the system's free energy if one of the two PEG blocks is short enough. The curvature of polymersomes is dependent on the chain structure of copolymers, especially on the length of PLA blocks. A constant branch number of aggregates (f) is thus required to preserve the morphology of polymersomes. Meanwhile, the aggregation number (Nagg) determined from the thermodynamics of self-assembly is roughly proportional to the total length of polymer chains. Comparing f to Nagg, the aggregates take the form of polymersomes if Nagg ~ f, and change to nanotubes if Nagg > f to conform to the limits from both curvature and aggregation number. The length of nanotubes is mainly determined by the difference between Nagg and f. However, the hollow structure becomes unstable when both PEG segments are too long, and the aggregates eventually collapse to yield spherical micelles. Therefore, this work gives new insights into the self-assembly behavior of PEG-PLA-PEG triblock copolymers in aqueous solution which present great interest for biomedical and

  7. Redox-responsive micelles self-assembled from dynamic covalent block copolymers for intracellular drug delivery.

    PubMed

    Yang, Qinglai; Tan, Lianjiang; He, Changyu; Liu, Bingya; Xu, Yuhong; Zhu, Zhenggang; Shao, Zhifeng; Gong, Bing; Shen, Yu-Mei

    2015-04-01

    Redox-responsive micelles self-assembled from dynamic covalent block copolymers with double disulfide linkage in the backbone have been developed successfully. The amphiphilic block copolymers PEG-PLA associated with complementary H-bonding sequences can self-assemble into spherical micelles in aqueous media with sizes from 34 nm to 107 nm with different molar mass of PEG and PLA. Moreover, in vitro drug release analyses indicate that reductive environment can result in triggered drug release profiles. The glutathione (GSH) mediated intracellular drug delivery was investigated against HeLa human cervical carcinoma cell line. Flow cytometry and fluorescence microscopy measurements demonstrated that the micelles exhibited faster drug release in glutathione monoester (GSH-OEt) pretreated HeLa cells than that in the nonpretreated cells. Cytotoxicity assay of DOX-loaded micelles indicated the higher cellular proliferation inhibition against 10 mM of GSH-OEt pretreated HeLa cells than that of the nonpretreated ones. These reduction-responsive, biodegradable and biocompatibility micelles could provide a favorable platform to construct excellent drug delivery systems for cancer therapy.

  8. Directed self-assembly of block copolymer films on atomically-thin graphene chemical patterns

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chang, Tzu-Hsuan; Xiong, Shisheng; Jacobberger, Robert M.; Mikael, Solomon; Suh, Hyo Seon; Liu, Chi-Chun; Geng, Dalong; Wang, Xudong; Arnold, Michael S.; Ma, Zhenqiang; Nealey, Paul F.

    2016-08-01

    Directed self-assembly of block copolymers is a scalable method to fabricate well-ordered patterns over the wafer scale with feature sizes below the resolution of conventional lithography. Typically, lithographically-defined prepatterns with varying chemical contrast are used to rationally guide the assembly of block copolymers. The directed self-assembly to obtain accurate registration and alignment is largely influenced by the assembly kinetics. Furthermore, a considerably broad processing window is favored for industrial manufacturing. Using an atomically-thin layer of graphene on germanium, after two simple processing steps, we create a novel chemical pattern to direct the assembly of polystyrene-block-poly(methyl methacrylate). Faster assembly kinetics are observed on graphene/germanium chemical patterns than on conventional chemical patterns based on polymer mats and brushes. This new chemical pattern allows for assembly on a wide range of guiding periods and along designed 90° bending structures. We also achieve density multiplication by a factor of 10, greatly enhancing the pattern resolution. The rapid assembly kinetics, minimal topography, and broad processing window demonstrate the advantages of inorganic chemical patterns composed of hard surfaces.

  9. Directed self-assembly of block copolymer films on atomically-thin graphene chemical patterns

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Tzu-Hsuan; Xiong, Shisheng; Jacobberger, Robert M.; Mikael, Solomon; Suh, Hyo Seon; Liu, Chi-Chun; Geng, Dalong; Wang, Xudong; Arnold, Michael S.; Ma, Zhenqiang; Nealey, Paul F.

    2016-01-01

    Directed self-assembly of block copolymers is a scalable method to fabricate well-ordered patterns over the wafer scale with feature sizes below the resolution of conventional lithography. Typically, lithographically-defined prepatterns with varying chemical contrast are used to rationally guide the assembly of block copolymers. The directed self-assembly to obtain accurate registration and alignment is largely influenced by the assembly kinetics. Furthermore, a considerably broad processing window is favored for industrial manufacturing. Using an atomically-thin layer of graphene on germanium, after two simple processing steps, we create a novel chemical pattern to direct the assembly of polystyrene-block-poly(methyl methacrylate). Faster assembly kinetics are observed on graphene/germanium chemical patterns than on conventional chemical patterns based on polymer mats and brushes. This new chemical pattern allows for assembly on a wide range of guiding periods and along designed 90° bending structures. We also achieve density multiplication by a factor of 10, greatly enhancing the pattern resolution. The rapid assembly kinetics, minimal topography, and broad processing window demonstrate the advantages of inorganic chemical patterns composed of hard surfaces. PMID:27528258

  10. All track directed self-assembly of block copolymers: process flow and origin of defects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rincon Delgadillo, Paulina A.; Gronheid, Roel; Thode, Christopher J.; Wu, Hengpeng; Cao, Yi; Somervell, Mark; Nafus, Kathleen; Nealey, Paul F.

    2012-03-01

    Directed Self-Assembly (DSA) of block copolymers is considered to be a potential lithographic solution to achieve higher feature densities than can be obtained by current lithographic techniques. However, it is still not well-established how amenable DSA of block copolymers is to an industrial fabrication environment in terms of defectivity and processing conditions. Beyond production-related challenges, precise manipulation of the geometrical and chemical properties over the substrate is essential to achieve high pattern fidelity upon the self-assembly process. Using our chemo-epitaxy DSA approach offers control over the surface properties of the slightly preferential brush material as well as those of the guiding structures. This allows for a detailed assessment of the critical material parameters for defect reduction. The precise control of environment afforded by industrial equipment allows for the selective analysis of material and process related boundary conditions and assessment of their effect on defect generation. In this study, the previously reported implementation of our feature multiplication process was used to investigate the origin of defects in terms of the geometry of the initial pre-patterns. Additionally, programmed defects were used to investigate the ability of the BCP to heal defects in the resist patterns and will aid to assess the capture capability of the inspection tool. Finally, the set-up of the infrastructure that will allow the study the generation of defects due to the interaction of the BCP with the boundary conditions has been accomplished at imec.

  11. Directed Self-Assembly of Block Copolymers in Thin Films on Polymer Nano-Stripes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Dong-Eun; Kang, Ho-Jong; Lee, Dong Hyun; Nano Functional Materials Lab. Team

    In this study, we report directed self-assembly (DSA) of block copolymers in thin films on nano-stripes of polymers. Unique nano-stripes of poly(tetrafluoro ethylene) (PTFE) having ~20 nm of amplitude and ~200 nm of pitch were simply generated by physically rubbing a PTFE bar on various substrates like Si wafers, glass, and polyimide due to its low friction coefficient and high wear rate. The resulting nano-stripes were extremely oriented along the rubbing direction. Then, various asymmetric polystyrene-block-poly(2-vinylpyridine) copolymers (PS- b-P2VP) were directly self-assembled on the nano-stripes of PTFE by solvent-annealing in vapor of tetrahydrofuran (THF). As a result, PS- b-P2VP exhibited extremely ordered P2VP cylinders oriented normal to the surface in large area on the underlying nano-stripes of PTFE. In addition, as utilizing the BCPs as templates, hexagonal arrays of metal nanoparticles were generated in large area for further application. BCP thin films and arrays of metal nanoparticles were characterized by atomic force microscopy (AFM) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM).

  12. Directing the self-assembly of semiconducting copolymers: the consequences of grafting linear or hyperbranched polyether side chains.

    PubMed

    zur Borg, Lisa; Schüll, Christoph; Frey, Holger; Zentel, Rudolf

    2013-08-01

    The synthesis and self-assembly of novel semiconducting rod-coil type graft block copolymers based on poly(para-phenylene vinylene) (PPV) copolymers is presented, focusing on the ordering effect of linear versus hyperbranched side chains. Using an additional reactive ester block, highly polar, linear poly(ethylene glycol), and hyperbranched polyglycerol side chains are attached in a grafting-to approach. Remarkably, the resulting novel semiconducting graft copolymers with polyether side chains show different solubility and side-chain directed self-assembly behavior in various solvents, e.g., cylindrical or spherical superstructures in the size range of 10 to 120 nm, as shown by TEM. By adjusting the molecular weight and the topology of the polyether segments, self-assembly into defined superstructures can be achieved, which is important for the efficient charge transport in potential electronic applications.

  13. Dissipative particle dynamics simulation study on self-assembly of amphiphilic hyperbranched multiarm copolymers with different degrees of branching.

    PubMed

    Tan, Haina; Wang, Wei; Yu, Chunyang; Zhou, Yongfeng; Lu, Zhongyuan; Yan, Deyue

    2015-11-21

    Hyperbranched multiarm copolymers (HMCs) have shown great potential to be excellent precursors in self-assembly to form various supramolecular structures in all scales and dimensions in solution. However, theoretical studies on the self-assembly of HMCs, especially the self-assembly dynamics and mechanisms, have been greatly lagging behind the experimental progress. Herein, we investigate the effect of degree of branching (DB) on the self-assembly structures of HMCs by dissipative particle dynamics (DPD) simulation. Our simulation results demonstrate that the self-assembly morphologies of HMCs can be changed from spherical micelles, wormlike micelles, to vesicles with the increase of DBs, which are qualitatively consistent with the experimental observations. In addition, both the self-assembly mechanisms and the dynamic processes for the formation of these three aggregates have been systematically disclosed through the simulations. These self-assembly details are difficult to be shown by experiments and are very useful to fully understand the self-assembly behaviors of HMCs.

  14. Effect of angstrom-scale surface roughness on the self-assembly of polystyrene-polydimethylsiloxane block copolymer

    PubMed Central

    Kundu, Shreya; Ganesan, Ramakrishnan; Gaur, Nikita; Saifullah, Mohammad S. M.; Hussain, Hazrat; Yang, Hyunsoo; Bhatia, Charanjit S.

    2012-01-01

    Self-assembly of block copolymers has been identified as a potential candidate for high density fabrication of nanostructures. However, the factors affecting its reliability and reproducibility as a patterning technique on various kinds of surfaces are not well-established. Studies pertaining to block copolymer self-assembly have been confined to ultra-flat substrates without taking into consideration the effect of surface roughness. Here, we show that a slight change in the angstrom-scale roughness arising from the surface of a material creates a profound effect on the self-assembly of polystyrene-polydimethylsiloxane block copolymer. Its self-assembly was found to be dependent on both the root mean square roughness (Rrms) of the surface and the type of solvent annealing system used. It was observed that surface with Rrms< 5.0 Å showed self-assembly. Above this value, the kinetic hindrance posed by the surface roughness on the block copolymer leads to its conforming to the surface without observable phase separation. PMID:22943003

  15. 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.

  16. Fluids Density Functional Theory of Diblock Copolymers for Electrolyte Applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brown, Jonathan R.; Hall, Lisa M.

    We use classical, fluids density functional theory (fDFT) to study microphase separation in block copolymer systems. We are motivated by systems used as battery electrolytes or in other transport applications, in which the two blocks of the system have different mechanical, dielectric, and transport properties that allow one phase to act as a charge/penetrant carrier and the other to make the film mechanically strong. We find density profiles of penetrants, showing to what degree they segregate into the A phase and their concentration near the interface, depending on the penetrant-A and penetrant-B interaction strengths as well as the A-B segregation strength. We also study the effect of tapering, or adding a gradient region (taper) between the pure A and B blocks of an AB diblock copolymer; the taper changes in composition along its length from pure A to pure B (or from B to A for an inverse taper). The effect of both penetrants and tapering on microphase domain spacing as a function of segregation strength will be discussed. Adjusting taper length allows one to tune the phase behavior of the system for easier processing or access to specific desired microphase structures. Based upon work supported by NSF Grant 1454343 and DOE Grant SC0014209.

  17. Development of block co-polymers as self-assembling templates for patterned media.

    SciTech Connect

    Warke, V.; Bakker, M. G.; Hong, K.; Mays, J.; Britt, P.; Li, X.; Wang, J.; X-Ray Science Division; Univ. of Alabama; ORNL

    2006-01-01

    Block copolymers that self-organize are of interest as templates for patterned media, as they potentially provide a low cost fabrication route. Poly(styrene)-Poly(methylmethacrylate) block co-polymers (PS-b-PMMA) of appropriate block length and PS to PMMA ratio self-assemble into a 2-D hexagonal phase in which the PS majority phase is continuous and surrounds cylinders of the minority, PMMA phase. For application of this phase to patterned media it is necessary that the cylinders of the minority phase be oriented perpendicular to the substrate surface. This can be achieved by a number of methods, including appropriate choice of substrate and use of a random co-polymer underlayer. Appropriate substrates include H-terminated silicon, some carbon coatings and some ITO glasses. Use of an acetic acid wash causes the minority PMMA component can be induced to be rearranged, giving rise to pores perpendicular to the substrate. Electrodeposition of a metal into the pores produces a hardmask which can be used with ion-milling to transfer the block co-polymer pattern onto a magnetic thin film.

  18. Propensity of Self-Assembled Leucine-Lysine Diblock Copolymeric α-Helical Peptides To Remain in Parallel and Antiparallel Alignments in Water.

    PubMed

    Sarkar, Sujit; Pandey, Prithvi Raj; Roy, Sudip

    2015-07-30

    Molecular dynamics simulation study of α-helical diblock copolypeptides preassembled in parallel and antiparallel alignments in water are presented. The assembled peptide lamellar structures were not disrupted even after performing three-step simulation protocols. Primarily hydrogen bonds between peptide are responsible for the stability. The analysis of the trajectory also suggests that water plays a significant role in favoring self-assembly. We have detected continuous hydrogen bonded network structure, which is further responsible for the stability of the lamellar structures. We have performed a detailed analysis of the hydrogen bonded network structure and its length. Further, free energy calculations revealed that the degree of stability for both lamellae are similar. The present study provides structural insight into the stability of self-assembled structures of block copolypeptides.

  19. 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.

  20. Tuning the Chirality of Block Copolymers: From Twisted Morphologies to Nanospheres by Self-Assembly.

    PubMed

    Suárez-Suárez, Silvia; Carriedo, Gabino A; Presa Soto, Alejandro

    2015-09-28

    New advances into the chirality effect in the self-assembly of block copolymers (BCPs) have been achieved by tuning the helicity of the chiral-core-forming blocks. The chiral BCPs {[N=P(R)-O2C20H12](200-x)[N=P(OC5H4N)2](x)}-b-[N=PMePh]50 ((R)-O2C20H12 = (R)-1,1'-binaphthyl-2,2'-dioxy, OC5H4N = 4-pyridinoxy (OPy); x = 10, 30, 60, 100 for 3 a-d, respectively), in which the [N=P(OPy)2] units are randomly distributed within the chiral block, have been synthesised. The chiroptical properties of the BCPs ([α]D vs. T and CD) demonstrated that the helicity of the BCP chains may be simply controlled by the relative proportion of the chiral and achiral (i.e., [N=P(R)-O2C20H12] and [N=P(OPy)2], respectively) units. Thus, although 3 a only contained only 5% [N=P(OPy)2] units and exhibited a preferential helical sense, 3 d with 50% of this unit adopted non-preferred helical conformations. This gradual variation of the helicity allowed us to examine the chirality effect on the self-assembly of chiral and helical BCPs (i.e., 3 a-c) and chiral but non-helical BCPs (i.e., 3 d). The very significant influence of the helicity on the self-assembly of these materials resulted in a variety of morphologies that extend from helical nanostructures to pearl-necklace aggregates and nanospheres (i.e., 3 b and 3 d, respectively). We also demonstrate that the presence of pyridine moieties in BCPs 3 a-d allows specific decoration with gold nanoparticles.

  1. Self-Assembly of Rod-Coil Block Copolymers and Their Application in Electroluminescent Devices

    SciTech Connect

    Tao, Yuefei; Ma, Biwu; Segalman, Rachel A.

    2008-11-18

    The formation of alternating electron transporting and hole transporting 15 nm lamellae within the active layer of an organic light-emitting diode (OLED) is demonstrated to improve device performance. A new multifunctional bipolar rod-coil block copolymer containing a poly(alkoxy phenylenevinylene) (PPV) rod-shaped block as the hole transporting and emitting material and a poly(vinyloxadiazole) coil-shaped electron transporting block is synthesized. This new block copolymer is the active material of a self-assembling multicomponent electroluminescent device that can be deposited in a single step. In the thin film, grazing incidence X-ray scattering and transmission electron microscopy demonstrate that the layers form grains which are oriented bimodally: parallel and perpendicular from the anode. In this mixed orientation, the device demonstrates better performance than those with either pure PPV or a blend of the two analogous homopolymers as the active materials, i.e., higher external quantum efficiency (EQE) and brightness. This improved device performance is mainly attributed to the bipolar functionality and microphase separation of the block copolymer, which provide highly efficient hole and electron recombination at the nanodomain interfaces.

  2. Self-Assembly of Rod-Coil Block Copolymers And Their Application in Electroluminescent Devices

    SciTech Connect

    Tao, Y.; Ma, B.; Segalman, R.A.

    2009-05-26

    The formation of alternating electron transporting and hole transporting 15 nm lamellae within the active layer of an organic light-emitting diode (OLED) is demonstrated to improve device performance. A new multifunctional bipolar rod-coil block copolymer containing a poly(alkoxy phenylenevinylene) (PPV) rod-shaped block as the hole transporting and emitting material and a poly(vinyloxadiazole) coil-shaped electron transporting block is synthesized. This new block copolymer is the active material of a self-assembling multicomponent electroluminescent device that can be deposited in a single step. In the thin film, grazing incidence X-ray scattering and transmission electron microscopy demonstrate that the layers form grains which are oriented bimodally: parallel and perpendicular from the anode. In this mixed orientation, the device demonstrates better performance than those with either pure PPV or a blend of the two analogous homopolymers as the active materials, i.e., higher external quantum efficiency (EQE) and brightness. This improved device performance is mainly attributed to the bipolar functionality and microphase separation of the block copolymer, which provide highly efficient hole and electron recombination at the nanodomain interfaces.

  3. Hierarchical self-assembly of spider silk-like block copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2011-03-01

    Block copolymers provide an attractive venue to study well-defined nano-structures that self-assemble to generate functionalized nano- and mesoporous materials. In the present study, a novel family of spider silk-like block copolymers was designed, bioengineered and characterized to study the impact of sequence chemistry, secondary structure and block length on assembled morphology. Genetic variants of native spider dragline silk (major ampullate spidroin I, Nephila clavipes) were used as polymer building blocks. Characterization by FTIR revealed increased ?-sheet content with increasing hydrophobic A blocks; SEM revealed spheres, rod-like structures, bowl-shaped and giant compound micelles. Langmuir Blodgett monolayers were prepared at the air-water interface at different surface pressures and monolayer films analyzed by AFM revealed oblate to prolate structures. Circular micelles, rod-like, densely packed circular structures were observed for HBA6 at increasing surface pressure. Exploiting hierarchical assembly provide a promising approach to rationale designs of protein block copolymer systems, allowing comparison to traditional synthetic systems.

  4. Frequency multiplication of lamellar phase block copolymers with grapho-epitaxy directed self-assembly sensitivity to prepattern

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gronheid, Roel; Rincon Delgadillo, Paulina A.; Younkin, Todd R.; Pollentier, Ivan; Somervell, Mark; Hooge, Joshua S.; Nafus, Kathleen; Nealey, Paul F.

    2012-07-01

    The optimization of a grapho-epitaxy process flow for lamellar phase block copolymer frequency multiplication on full 300 mm wafers is discussed. The process uses a dedicated photoresist that, after hardening, allows direct coating and annealing of the block copolymer over it. Some of the critical parameters for optimization of this process were found to be the selection of the neutral layer material and reduction of the prepattern resist height. Process window analysis was done by determining the best dose and focus settings for generating high quality directed self-assembly structures with the prepattern process. A very small process window for good self-assembly and an offset in the optimum dose and focus settings for these two stages of the process were found. Finally, the sensitivity of the process to programmed prepattern imperfections was studied. Programmed protrusions in the prepattern as small as 6 nm were found to cause self-assembly defects.

  5. Molecular transport through nanoporous silicon nitride membranes produced from self-assembling block copolymers.

    PubMed

    Montagne, Franck; Blondiaux, Nicolas; Bojko, Alexandre; Pugin, Raphaël

    2012-09-28

    To achieve fast and selective molecular filtration, membrane materials must ideally exhibit a thin porous skin and a high density of pores with a narrow size distribution. Here, we report the fabrication of nanoporous silicon nitride membranes (NSiMs) at the full wafer scale using a versatile process combining block copolymer (BCP) self-assembly and conventional photolithography/etching techniques. In our method, self-assembled BCP micelles are used as templates for creating sub-100 nm nanopores in a thin low-stress silicon nitride layer, which is then released from the underlying silicon wafer by etching. The process yields 100 nm thick free-standing NSiMs of various lateral dimensions (up to a few mm(2)). We show that the membranes exhibit a high pore density, while still retaining excellent mechanical strength. Permeation experiments reveal that the molecular transport rate across NSiMs is up to 16-fold faster than that of commercial polymeric membranes. Moreover, using dextran molecules of various molecular weights, we also demonstrate that size-based separation can be achieved with a very good selectivity. These new silicon nanosieves offer a relevant technological alternative to commercially available ultra- and microfiltration membranes for conducting high resolution biomolecular separations at small scales.

  6. Directed block copolymer self-assembly implemented via surface-embedded electrets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Mei-Ling; Wang, Dong; Wan, Li-Jun

    2016-02-01

    Block copolymer (BCP) nanolithography is widely recognized as a promising complementary approach to circumvent the feature size limits of conventional photolithography. The directed self-assembly of BCP thin film to form ordered nanostructures with controlled orientation and localized pattern has been the key challenge for practical nanolithography applications. Here we show that BCP nanopatterns can be directed on localized surface electrets defined by electron-beam irradiation to realize diverse features in a simple, effective and non-destructive manner. Charged electrets can generate a built-in electric field in BCP thin film and induce the formation of perpendicularly oriented microdomain of BCP film. The electret-directed orientation control of BCP film can be either integrated with mask-based patterning technique or realized by electron-beam direct-writing method to fabricate microscale arbitrary lateral patterns down to single BCP cylinder nanopattern. The electret-directed BCP self-assembly could provide an alternative means for BCP-based nanolithography, with high resolution.

  7. [INVITED] Hyperbolic-by-design self-assembled metamaterial based on block copolymers lamellar phases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Xuan; Ehrhardt, Kevin; Tallet, Clémence; Warenghem, Marc; Baron, Alexandre; Aradian, Ashod; Kildemo, Morten; Ponsinet, Virginie

    2017-02-01

    Hyperbolic metamaterials use the concept of controlling the propagative modes through the engineering of the dispersion relation, and are considered highly promising to reach different meta-properties. Here we propose a novel bottom-up fabrication technique for uniaxial anisotropic metamaterials presenting a strongly anisotropic dispersion relation in the visible wavelength range, using self-assembled nanostructured block copolymers hybridized with gold nanoparticles. The materials consist in periodic lamellar stacks of period 28 nm, of alternating layers of pure polymer (dielectric) and layers of composite of polymer loaded with a high density of 7 nm gold nanoparticles. The spectral variation of their anisotropic effective dielectric permittivity is determined by variable-angle spectroscopic ellipsometry using appropriate effective medium models, as a function of the density of plasmonic nanoparticles. For large gold loading and close to the plasmon resonance of the nanoparticles, the lamellar stack presents ordinary and extraordinary components of the dielectric function of opposite signs. We therefore demonstrate for the first time the possibility of using a self-assembly methodology for the fabrication of bulk hyperbolic metamaterial.

  8. Directed block copolymer self-assembly implemented via surface-embedded electrets

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Mei-Ling; Wang, Dong; Wan, Li-Jun

    2016-01-01

    Block copolymer (BCP) nanolithography is widely recognized as a promising complementary approach to circumvent the feature size limits of conventional photolithography. The directed self-assembly of BCP thin film to form ordered nanostructures with controlled orientation and localized pattern has been the key challenge for practical nanolithography applications. Here we show that BCP nanopatterns can be directed on localized surface electrets defined by electron-beam irradiation to realize diverse features in a simple, effective and non-destructive manner. Charged electrets can generate a built-in electric field in BCP thin film and induce the formation of perpendicularly oriented microdomain of BCP film. The electret-directed orientation control of BCP film can be either integrated with mask-based patterning technique or realized by electron-beam direct-writing method to fabricate microscale arbitrary lateral patterns down to single BCP cylinder nanopattern. The electret-directed BCP self-assembly could provide an alternative means for BCP-based nanolithography, with high resolution. PMID:26876792

  9. Thermoresponsive Nanoparticles of Self-Assembled Block Copolymers as Potential Carriers for Drug Delivery and Diagnostics.

    PubMed

    Rahikkala, Antti; Aseyev, Vladimir; Tenhu, Heikki; Kauppinen, Esko I; Raula, Janne

    2015-09-14

    Thermally responsive hydrogel nanoparticles composed of self-assembled polystyrene-b-poly(N-isopropylacrylamide)-b-polystyrene block copolymers and fluorescent probe 1-anilinonaphthalene-8-sulfonic acid have been prepared by aerosol flow reactor method. We aimed exploring the relationship of intraparticle morphologies, that were, PS spheres and gyroids embedded in PNIPAm matrix, as well PS-PNIPAm lamellar structure, to probe release in aqueous solution below and above the cloud point temperature (CPT) of PNIPAm. The release was detected by fluorescence emission given by the probe binding to bovine serum albumin. Also, the colloidal behavior of hydrogel nanoparticles at varying temperatures were examined by scattering method. The probe release was faster below than above the CPT from all the morphologies of which gyroidal morphology showed the highest release. Colloidal behavior varied from single to moderately aggregated particles in order spheres-gyroids-lamellar. Hydrogel nanoparticles with tunable intra particle self-assembled morphologies can be utilized designing carrier systems for drug delivery and diagnostics.

  10. Building non-tortuous ion-conduction pathways using self-assembled block copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Onnuri; Park, Moon Jeong

    Ion-containing polymers with self-assembled morphologies are becoming important ingredients of a wide range of electrochemical devices such as lithium-ion batteries, fuel cells and electroactive actuators. Although several studies have reported the relationship between morphologies and ion transport properties of such polymers, the most of quantitative analysis have been limited to two-dimensional morphologies as they occupy a large window of the phase diagrams. In present study, we investigated the effects of morphology on the ion transport efficiency with a focus on three-dimensional symmetry. A range of three-dimensional self-assembled morphologies, i.e., ill-defined cubic, orthorhombic network (O70) , and face-centered cubic phases (fcc) were achieved for a single sulfonated block copolymer upon the addition of non-stoichiometric ionic liquids. The type of three-dimensional lattice was found out to play a crucial role in determining the ion transport properties of composite membranes, where the most efficient ion-conduction was demonstrated for fcc phases with lowest tortuosity of 1 over orthorhombic networks phases (tortuosity:1.5). This intriguing result suggests a new avenue to designing polymer electrolytes with improved transport properties.

  11. Amphiphilic Graft Copolymer Nanospheres: From Colloidal Self-Assembly to CO2 Capture Membranes.

    PubMed

    Jeon, Harim; Kim, Dong Jun; Park, Min Su; Ryu, Du Yeol; Kim, Jong Hak

    2016-04-13

    Colloidal nanosphere self-assembly effectively generates ordered nanostructures, prompting tremendous interest in many applications such as photonic crystals and templates for inverse opal fabrication. Here we report the self-assembly of low-cost, graft copolymer nanospheres for CO2 capture membranes. Specifically, poly(dimethylsiloxane)-graft-poly(4-vinylpyridine) (PDMS-g-P4VP) is synthesized via one-pot, free radical dispersion polymerization to give discrete monodisperse nanospheres. These nanospheres comprise a surface-anchored highly permeable PDMS layer and internal CO2-philic P4VP spherical core. Their diameter is controllable below the submicrometer range by varying grafting ratios. The colloidal dispersion forms a long-range, close-packed hexagonal array on a substrate by inclined deposition and convective assembly. The array shows dispersion medium-dependent packing characteristics. A thermodynamic correlation is determined using different solvents to obtain stable PDMS-g-P4VP dispersions and interpreted in terms of Flory-Huggins interaction parameter. As a proof-of-concept, the implementation of these nanospheres into membranes simultaneously enhances the CO2 permeability and CO2/N2 selectivity of PDMS-based transport matrixes. Upon physical aging of the solution, the CO2/N2 selectivity is improved up to 26, one of the highest values for highly permeable PDMS-based polymeric membranes.

  12. Self-Assembly and Relaxation Behavior of Graphene Containing Acrylic Triblock Copolymer Gels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zabet, Mahla; Hashemnejad, Seyedmeysam; Kundu, Santanu

    2015-03-01

    Investigation of gel mechanical properties as a function of their structure is a significant research interest. This study presents the effect of graphene (or few-layer graphene) on the self-assembly and the relaxation behavior of a thermoreversible gel consists of a physically cross-linked poly (methyl methacrylate)-poly (n-butyl acrylate)-poly (methyl methacrylate) [PMMA-PnBA-PMMA] triblock copolymer in 2-ethyl-1-hexanol, a midblock selective solvent. Graphene was obtained by sonicating exfoliated graphite in 2-ethyl-1-hexanol at various concentrations. Filtration technique and spectrophotometry were utilized to measure the graphene concentration in the dispersions. The dispersed graphene was then incorporated in a series of gels and the effect of graphene on mechanical properties, including the relaxation behavior were studied. Small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) was used to investigate the microstructure of these gels at room temperature. SAXS data were analyzed to estimate the number of end blocks per junction zone, the average spacing between the junctions, and the change of these properties as a function of graphene concentration. The results indicate that the presence of graphene affects the self-assembly process.

  13. Highly tunable refractive index visible-light metasurface from block copolymer self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Kim, Ju Young; Kim, Hyowook; Kim, Bong Hoon; Chang, Taeyong; Lim, Joonwon; Jin, Hyeong Min; Mun, Jeong Ho; Choi, Young Joo; Chung, Kyungjae; Shin, Jonghwa; Fan, Shanhui; Kim, Sang Ouk

    2016-09-29

    The refractive index of natural transparent materials is limited to 2-3 throughout the visible wavelength range. Wider controllability of the refractive index is desired for novel optical applications such as nanoimaging and integrated photonics. We report that metamaterials consisting of period and symmetry-tunable self-assembled nanopatterns can provide a controllable refractive index medium for a broad wavelength range, including the visible region. Our approach exploits the independent control of permeability and permittivity with nanoscale objects smaller than the skin depth. The precise manipulation of the interobject distance in block copolymer nanopatterns via pattern shrinkage increased the effective refractive index up to 5.10. The effective refractive index remains above 3.0 over more than 1,000 nm wavelength bandwidth. Spatially graded and anisotropic refractive indices are also obtained with the design of transitional and rotational symmetry modification.

  14. Highly tunable refractive index visible-light metasurface from block copolymer self-assembly

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Ju Young; Kim, Hyowook; Kim, Bong Hoon; Chang, Taeyong; Lim, Joonwon; Jin, Hyeong Min; Mun, Jeong Ho; Choi, Young Joo; Chung, Kyungjae; Shin, Jonghwa; Fan, Shanhui; Kim, Sang Ouk

    2016-01-01

    The refractive index of natural transparent materials is limited to 2–3 throughout the visible wavelength range. Wider controllability of the refractive index is desired for novel optical applications such as nanoimaging and integrated photonics. We report that metamaterials consisting of period and symmetry-tunable self-assembled nanopatterns can provide a controllable refractive index medium for a broad wavelength range, including the visible region. Our approach exploits the independent control of permeability and permittivity with nanoscale objects smaller than the skin depth. The precise manipulation of the interobject distance in block copolymer nanopatterns via pattern shrinkage increased the effective refractive index up to 5.10. The effective refractive index remains above 3.0 over more than 1,000 nm wavelength bandwidth. Spatially graded and anisotropic refractive indices are also obtained with the design of transitional and rotational symmetry modification. PMID:27683077

  15. Nanostructured Colloidal Particles by Confined Self-Assembly of Block Copolymers in Evaporative Droplets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Minsoo; Yi, Gi-Ra

    2015-06-01

    Block copolymers (BCPs) can create various morphology by self-assembly in bulk or film. Recently, using BCPs in confined geometries such as thin film (one-dimension), cylindrical template (two-dimension), or emulsion droplet (three-dimension), nanostructured BCP particles have been prepared, in which unique nanostructures of the BCP are formed via solvent annealing process and can be controlled depending on molecular weight ratio and interaction parameter of the BCPs, and droplet size. Moreover, by tuning interfacial property of the BCP particles, anisotropic particles with unique nanostructures have been prepared. Furthermore, for practical application such as drug delivery system, sensor, self-healing, metamaterial, and optoelectronic device, functional nanoparticles can be incorporated inside BCP particles. In this article, we summarize recent progress on the production of structured BCP particles and composite particles with metallic nanoparticles.

  16. Placement error in directed self-assembly of block copolymers for contact hole application

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bouanani, Shayma; Tiron, Raluca; Bos, Sandra; Gharbi, Ahmed; Barros, Patricia Pimenta; Hazart, Jérôme; Robert, Frédéric; Lapeyre, Céline; Ostrovsky, Alain; Monget, Cédric

    2016-04-01

    Directed self-assembly (DSA) of block copolymers has shown interesting results for contact hole application, as a vertical interconnection access for CMOS sub-10 nm technology. The control of critical dimension uniformity (CDU), defectivity, and placement error (PE) is challenging and depends on multiple processes and material parameters. This paper reports the work done using the 300-mm pilot line available in materials to integrate the DSA process on contact and via level patterning. In the first part, a reliable methodology for PE measurement is defined. By tuning intrinsic edge detection parameters on standard reference images, the working window is determined. The methodology is then implemented to analyze the experimental data. The impact of the planarization process on PE and the importance of PE as a complement of CDU and hole open yield for process window determination are discussed.

  17. Hierarchical volume gratings by combining holographic-patterning and block copolymer self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Birnkrant, Michael; Marron, Russell; Li, Christopher; Natarajan, Lalgudi; Tondiglia, Vincent; Bunning, Timothy

    2009-03-01

    A novel hierarchical photonic crystal (HPC) was fabricated by combining top-down and bottom-up nanomanufacturing techniques. The hierarchical structure was fabricated from a volume of material by combining holographic patterning (HP) and block copolymer (BCP) self assembly. The structure of the HPC was investigated as a function of the BCP architecture, BCP concentration and crystallization temperature. Upon heating the photonic crystal a red shift in the reflected wavelength occurs; but, an initial decrease in diffraction efficiency (DE) followed by an increase in DE indicates a non-monotonic change in the structure of the HPC. Upon cooling the reverse occurs reflecting the dynamic change in the hierarchical structure. Transmission electron microscopy, in-situ FTIR and optical spectroscopy were used to correlate the optical property change with BCP/HPC morphology. This approach could open a gateway to fabricating multifunctional hierarchical nanostructures.

  18. Highly tunable refractive index visible-light metasurface from block copolymer self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Ju Young; Kim, Hyowook; Kim, Bong Hoon; Chang, Taeyong; Lim, Joonwon; Jin, Hyeong Min; Mun, Jeong Ho; Choi, Young Joo; Chung, Kyungjae; Shin, Jonghwa; Fan, Shanhui; Kim, Sang Ouk

    2016-09-01

    The refractive index of natural transparent materials is limited to 2-3 throughout the visible wavelength range. Wider controllability of the refractive index is desired for novel optical applications such as nanoimaging and integrated photonics. We report that metamaterials consisting of period and symmetry-tunable self-assembled nanopatterns can provide a controllable refractive index medium for a broad wavelength range, including the visible region. Our approach exploits the independent control of permeability and permittivity with nanoscale objects smaller than the skin depth. The precise manipulation of the interobject distance in block copolymer nanopatterns via pattern shrinkage increased the effective refractive index up to 5.10. The effective refractive index remains above 3.0 over more than 1,000 nm wavelength bandwidth. Spatially graded and anisotropic refractive indices are also obtained with the design of transitional and rotational symmetry modification.

  19. Creating periodic local strain in monolayer graphene with nanopillars patterned by self-assembled block copolymer

    SciTech Connect

    Mi, Hongyi; Mikael, Solomon; Seo, Jung-Hun; Gui, Gui; Ma, Alice L.; Ma, Zhenqiang E-mail: mazq@engr.wisc.edu; Liu, Chi-Chun; Nealey, Paul F. E-mail: mazq@engr.wisc.edu

    2015-10-05

    A simple and viable method was developed to produce biaxial strain in monolayer graphene on an array of SiO{sub 2} nanopillars. The array of SiO{sub 2} nanopillars (1 cm{sup 2} in area, 80 nm in height, and 40 nm in pitch) was fabricated by employing self-assembled block copolymer through simple dry etching and deposition processes. According to high resolution micro-Raman spectroscopy and atomic force microscopy analyses, 0.9% of maximum biaxial tensile strain and 0.17% of averaged biaxial tensile strain in graphene were created. This technique provides a simple and viable method to form biaxial tensile strain in graphene and offers a practical platform for future studies in graphene strain engineering.

  20. ELEMENTARY APPROACH TO SELF-ASSEMBLY AND ELASTIC PROPERTIES OF RANDOM COPOLYMERS

    SciTech Connect

    S. M. CHITANVIS

    2000-10-01

    The authors have mapped the physics of a system of random copolymers onto a time-dependent density functional-type field theory using techniques of functional integration. Time in the theory is merely a label for the location of a given monomer along the extent of a flexible chain. We derive heuristically within this approach a non-local constraint which prevents segments on chains in the system from straying too far from each other, and leads to self-assembly. The structure factor is then computed in a straightforward fashion. The long wave-length limit of the structure factor is used to obtain the elastic modulus of the network. It is shown that there is a surprising competition between the degree of micro-phase separation and the elastic moduli of the system.

  1. Self-assembled block copolymer photonic crystal for selective fructose detection.

    PubMed

    Ayyub, Omar B; Ibrahim, Michael B; Briber, Robert M; Kofinas, Peter

    2013-08-15

    The use of one-dimensional photonic crystals fabricated from a self-assembled lamellar block copolymer as a sensitive and selective fructose sensor is investigated. The polystyrene-b-poly(2-vinyl pyridine) (PS-b-P2VP) films are functionalized with 2-(bromomethyl)phenylboronic acid. The boronic acid moiety confined within the lamellar morphology can reversibly bind to sugars such as fructose, imparting the photonic properties of the PS-b-P2VP film. The films exhibit a detection limit of 500 μM in water and 1mM in phosphate buffered saline. Exposure to a 50 mM solution of fructose invokes a highly visible color change from blue to orange. The films are also able to selectively recognize and respond to fructose in competitive studies in the presence of glucose, mannose and sucrose.

  2. Self-assembly of amphiphilic and nanoparticle containing block copolymer films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Chen

    The self-assembly of amphiphilic and nanoparticle containing block copolymer films is explored in this thesis. We first present the stimuli-responsive nanostructures assembled from amphiphilic block copolymers. Amphiphilic block copolymer poly(styrene-b-acrylic acid) (PS-b-PAA) or poly(styrene-b-acrylic anhydride) (PS-b-PAAn) are derived via thermochemical evolution of the tert-butyl groups in poly(styrene-b-tert-butyl acrylate) (PS- b-PtBA). This novel approach leads to the formation of nanostructures containing perpendicular hydrophilic cylinders or ordered spherical domains on silicon substrates. The surface morphology and properties of the nanostructured PS-b-PAA films depend on external stimuli, i.e., selective solvents (water and toluene) and pH. Upon exposure to water, the hydrophilic PAA cylinders swell above the surface and transform to PAA mushrooms that render the entire surface hydrophilic. Upon exposure to toluene, the hydrophobic PS matrix swells above the surface and results in a hydrophobic surface. Because PAA is a weak polyelectrolyte, the films exhibit three unique nanostructured morphologies across three pH regimes. Film wettability can be tuned by directing the arrangement of PAA chains via external stimulation, demonstrating that the nanostructured PS-b-PAA films can display self-adaptive surface properties. This dissertation also explores the dispersion of poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA)-grafted magnetic magnetite (Fe3O4) NPs in PMMA and poly(styrene-b-methyl methacrylate) (PS-b-PMMA) films, as well as the self-assembly of PS-b-PMMA/Fe 3O4 NP nanocomposite films. The Fe3O4 NPs are grafted with PMMA brushes of three different molecular weights, i.e., 2700, 13300 and 35700 g/mol (i.e., Fe3O4-2.7K, Fe 3O4-13.3K and Fe3O4-35.7K). The Fe 3O4-35.7K NPs are uniformly dispersed in PMMA films, whereas the Fe3O4 NPs with short brushes form aggregates. This behavior is consistent with the wet and dry brush theory. However, for NPs in PS-b-PMMA films an

  3. Self-assembly of well-defined ferrocene triblock copolymers and their template synthesis of ordered iron oxide nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Hardy, Christopher G; Ren, Lixia; Ma, Shuguo; Tang, Chuanbing

    2013-05-14

    Well-defined ferrocene-containing triblock copolymers were synthesized by atom transfer radical polymerization and self-assembled into highly ordered hexagonal arrays of cylinders via solvent annealing. The thin films were further used as a template and converted into highly ordered iron oxide nanoparticles (α-Fe2O3) by UV/ozonolysis and thermal pyrolysis.

  4. Lamellae orientation in dynamically sheared diblock copolymer melts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koppi, Kurt A.; Tirrell, Matthew; Bates, Frank S.; Almdal, Kristoffer; Colby, Ralph H.

    1992-11-01

    Two distinct lamellae orientaitons have been identified by small-angle neutron scattering (SANS) in dynamically sheared poly(ethylene-propylene)-poly(ethylethylene) (PEP-PEE) diblock copolymer melts. Near the order-disorder transition temperature, Tto T_ODT, and at low shear frequencies, the lamellae arrange with unit normal perpendicular to the flow direction and parallel to the velocity gradient direction (parallel orientation). Higher frequency processing leads to lamellae with unit normal permendicular to both the flow and velocity gradient directions (perpendicular orientation). The crossover from low to high frequency behavior occurs at ω≈tau^{-1} where tau is the relaxation time for local domain deformations. At temperatures further from the ODT, T<diblock copolymers. Nous avons identifié, par diffusion de neutrons aux petits angles, deux orientation différentes des lamelles dans des échantillons de copolymères séquencés poly(éthylène-propylène)- poly(éthylétylène) (PEP-PEE) qui ont été cisaillés dynamiquement. A des températures proches de la transition ordre-désordre et aux fréquences de cisaillement faibles, la normale aux couches est perpendiculaire à la direction d'écoulement et parallèle au gradient de vitesse (orientation parllèle). Aux fréquences plus élevées, la normale est perpendiculaire à la direction d'écoulement et au gradient de vitesse (orientation perpendiculaire). Le

  5. Crystalline free energies of micelles of diblock copolymer solutions.

    PubMed

    D'Adamo, Giuseppe; Pierleoni, Carlo

    2010-11-28

    We report a characterization of the relative stability and structural behavior of various micellar crystals of an athermal model of AB-diblock copolymers in solution. We adopt a previously developed coarse-graining representation of the chains which maps each copolymer on a soft dumbbell. Thanks to this strong reduction of degrees of freedom, we are able to investigate large aggregated systems and for a specific length ratio of the blocks f = M(A)∕(M(A) + M(B)) = 0.6, to locate the order-disorder transition of the system of micelles. Above the transition, mechanical and thermal properties are found to depend on the number of particles per lattice site in the simulation box, and the application of a recent methodology for multiple occupancy crystals [B. M. Mladek et al., Phys. Rev. Lett. 99, 235702 (2007)] is necessary to correctly define the equilibrium state. Within this scheme we have performed free energy calculations at two reduced density ρ∕ρ∗ = 4, 5 and for several cubic structures such as fcc, bcc, and A15. At both densities, the bcc symmetry is found to correspond to the minimum of the unconstrained free energy, that is to the stable symmetry among the few considered, while the A15 structure is almost degenerate, indicating that the present system prefers to crystallize in less packed structures. At ρ∕ρ∗ = 4 close to melting, the Lindemann ratio is fairly high (∼0.29) and the concentration of vacancies is roughly 6%. At ρ∕ρ∗ = 5 the mechanical stability of the stable bcc structure increases and the concentration of vacancies accordingly decreases. The ratio of the corona layer thickness to the core radius is found to be in good agreement with experimental data for poly(styrene-b-isoprene)(22-12) in isoprene selective solvent which is also reported to crystallize in the bcc structure.

  6. 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

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. Simulation study of the effect of molar mass dispersity on domain interfacial roughness in lamellae forming block copolymers for directed self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peters, Andrew J.; Lawson, Richard A.; Nation, Benjamin D.; Ludovice, Peter J.; Henderson, Clifford L.

    2015-09-01

    A coarse-grained molecular dynamics model was used to study the thin film self-assembly and resulting pattern properties of block copolymer (BCP) systems with various molar mass dispersities. Diblock copolymers (i.e. A-b-B type) were simulated in an aligned lamellar state, which is one of the most common patterns of potential use for integrated circuit fabrication via directed self-assembly of BCPs. Effects of the molar mass dispersity (Ð) on feature pitch and interfacial roughness, which are critical lithographic parameters that have a direct impact on integrated circuit performance, were simulated. It was found that for a realistic distribution of polymer molecular weights, modeled by a Wesslau distribution, both line edge roughness (LER) and line width roughness (LWR) increase approximately linearly with increasing Ð, up to ˜45% of the monodisperse value at Ð = 1.5. Mechanisms of compensation for increased A-A and B-B roughness were considered. It was found that long and short chain positions were not correlated, and that long chains were significantly deformed in shape. The increase in LWR was due to the increase in LER and a constant correlation between the line edges. Unaligned systems show a correlation between domain width and local molecular weight, while systems aligned on an alternating pattern of A and B lines did not show any correlation. When the volume fraction of individual chains was allowed to vary, similar results were found when considering the Ð of the block as opposed to the Ð of the entire system.

  10. Novel self-assembly graft copolymers as carriers for anti-inflammatory drug delivery.

    PubMed

    Bury, Katarzyna; Neugebauer, Dorota

    2014-01-02

    Indomethacin (IMC) and quercetin (QUE) as typical models of anti-inflammatory drugs were loaded into the micelles of new amphiphilic graft copolymers, comprising caprolactone 2-(methacryloyloxy)ethyl ester (CLMA) units in the main chain and poly(meth)acrylic acid side chains (PAA/PMAA), which were studied as the carriers of drugs. The macromolecules were self-assembled by solvent evaporation or dialysis. The critical micelle concentration (CMC) ranged from 0.015 to 0.199 mg/ml. The copolymer composition, grafting degree and length of side chains, nature and content of hydrophobic/hydrophilic part, were investigated as the main parameters responsible for the properties of nanoparticles including their stability, core-drug interactions, improved drug solubility, and in consequence the efficiency of drug-loading and drug release profiles. The hydrodynamic diameters of particles measured by dynamic light scattering (DLS) ranged from 50 to 275 nm, and increased after loading with drug. In vitro release experiments performed at various pH (5.0 and 7.4) indicated faster release behavior from nanoparticles in acidic conditions (55-95% vs. 25-45% within 75 h).

  11. Polydispersity-Driven Block Copolymer Amphiphile Self-Assembly into Prolate-Spheroid Micelles

    SciTech Connect

    Schmitt, Andrew L.; Repollet-Pedrosa, Milton H.; Mahanthappa, Mahesh K.

    2013-09-26

    The aqueous self-assembly behavior of polydisperse poly(ethylene oxide-b-1,4-butadiene-b-ethylene oxide) (OBO) macromolecular triblock amphiphiles is examined to discern the implications of continuous polydispersity in the hydrophobic block on the resulting aqueous micellar morphologies of otherwise monodisperse polymer surfactants. The chain length polydispersity and implicit composition polydispersity of these samples furnishes a distribution of preferred interfacial curvatures, resulting in dilute aqueous block copolymer dispersions exhibiting coexisting spherical and rod-like micelles with vesicles in a single sample with a O weight fraction, w{sub O}, of 0.18. At higher w{sub O} = 0.51-0.68, the peak in the interfacial curvature distribution shifts and we observe the formation of only American football-shaped micelles. We rationalize the formation of these anisotropically shaped aggregates based on the intrinsic distribution of preferred curvatures adopted by the polydisperse copolymer amphiphiles and on the relief of core block chain stretching by chain-length-dependent intramicellar segregation.

  12. Block copolymer self-assembly fundamentals and applications in formulation of nano-structured fluids

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sarkar, Biswajit

    Dispersions of nanoparticles in polymer matrices form hybrid materials that can exhibit superior structural and functional properties and find applications in e.g. thermo-plastics, electronics, polymer electrolytes, catalysis, paint formulations, and drug delivery. Control over the particle location and orientation in the polymeric matrices are essential in order to realize the enhanced mechanical, electrical, and optical properties of the nanohybrids. Block copolymers, composed of two or more different monomers, are promising for controlling particle location and orientation because of their ability to organize into ordered nanostructures. Fundamental questions pertaining to nanoparticle-polymer interfacial interactions remain open and formulate the objectives of our investigation. Particle-polymer enthalpic and entropic interactions control the nanoparticle dispersion in polymer matrices. Synthetic chemical methods for modifying the particle surface in order to control polymer-particle interactions are involved and large scale production is not possible. In the current approach, a physical method is employed to control polymer-particle interactions. The use of commercially available solvents is found to be effective in modifying particle-polymer interfacial interactions. The approach is applicable to a wide range of particle-polymer systems and can thereby enable large scale processing of polymer nanohybrids. The systems of silica nanoparticles dispersed in long-range or short-range self-assembled structures of aqueous poly(ethylene oxide)-poly(propylene oxide)-poly(ethylene oxide) (PEO-PPO-PEO) block copolymers (Pluronics) is considered here. The effect of various parameters such as the presence of organic solvents, pH, and particle size on the block copolymer organization and the ensuing particle-polymer interactions are investigated. Favorable surface interactions between the deprotonated silica nanoparticle and PEO-rich domain facilitate particle

  13. Selectivity and temperature dependence of phase and phase transition in diblock copolymer solution.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Lingyun; Wang, Peng-Ye

    2011-04-01

    In order to study the effects of solvent selectivity and temperature on phase behavior and transition of diblock copolymer solution, self-consistent field theory is modified to incorporate the short-range interaction and non-local effects. Inhomogeneous free-energy density is shown to be dependent on solvent selectivity, temperature and copolymer concentration. Enthalpic quantity and entropic contributions are crucial to phase diagrams of diblock copolymer solution. Three selective strengths of solvent --weak, moderate and strong-- are chosen for comparison. For a weakly selective solvent, theoretical and experimental results illustrate the same variation tendency in the phase boundary of the order-disorder transition for a symmetric diblock of polystyrene and polyisoprene. Self-consistent field equations can be used to calculate the exact FCC-BCC structural phase transition temperatures in moderately and strongly selective solvents. Detailed comparison with the experimental phase diagrams including lamellar, cylindrical and spherical structures is presented.

  14. Controlled synthesis of amino acid-based pH-responsive chiral polymers and self-assembly of their block copolymers.

    PubMed

    Bauri, Kamal; Roy, Saswati Ghosh; Pant, Shashank; De, Priyadarsi

    2013-02-26

    Leucine/isoleucine side chain polymers are of interest due to their hydrophobicity and reported role in the formation of α-helical structures. The synthesis and reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization of amino acid-based chiral monomers, namely Boc-L-leucine methacryloyloxyethyl ester (Boc-L-Leu-HEMA, 1a), Boc-L-leucine acryloyloxyethyl ester (Boc-L-Leu-HEA, 1b), Boc-L-isoleucine methacryloyloxyethyl ester (Boc-L-Ile-HEMA, 1c), and Boc-L-isoleucine acryloyloxyethyl ester (Boc-L-Ile-HEA, 1d), are reported. The controlled nature of the polymerization of the said chiral monomers in N, N-dimethylformamide (DMF) at 70 °C is evident from the formation of narrow polydisperse polymers, the molecular weight controlled by the monomer/chain transfer agent (CTA) molar ratio and the linear relationship between molecular weight and monomer conversion. The resulting well-defined polymers were used as macro-CTAs to prepare corresponding diblock copolymers by RAFT polymerization of methyl (meth)acrylate monomers. Deprotection of Boc groups in the homopolymers and block copolymers under acidic conditions produced cationic, pH-responsive polymers with primary amine moieties at the side chains. The optical activity of the homopolymers and block copolymers were studied using circular dichroism (CD) spectroscopy and specific rotation measurements. The self-assembling nature of the block copolymers to produce highly ordered structures was illustrated through dynamic light scattering (DLS) and atomic force microscopy (AFM) studies. The side chain amine functionality instills pH-responsive behavior, which makes these cationic polymers attractive candidates for drug delivery applications, as well as for conjugation of biomolecules.

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

    DOE PAGES

    Kumar, Rajeev; Lokitz, Bradley S.; Sides, Scott W.; ...

    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

  16. 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

  17. Controlling Directed Self-Assembly and Sintering of Gold Nanorods in Patterned Block Copolymer Thin Films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lai, Fengyuan

    As the miniaturization of electronic devices continues, proper thermal management is crucial to ensure the optimum performance and reliability of such devices within their specification. Of primary interest are the so-called thermal interface materials to minimize the thermal resistance between the heat source and the heat sink. To this end, polymer nanocomposites composed of a polymer matrix and nanoscale fillers with high thermal conductivity have attracted tremendous attention. It has been demonstrated that the formation of a nanoparticle assembly inside the polymer matrix provides a continuous pathway for efficient heat transfer, and thus it is essential for achieving high thermal conductivity. In this work, we explored the ability to direct the self-assembly of gold nanorods (AuNRs) via patterned block copolymer (BCP) thin films. Selective sequestration of AuNRs with various aspect ratios in one block domain was achieved, with over 30% of the surface covered by an ordered AuNR assembly orienting parallel to the geometric confinement. The final nanostructure resulting from the directed self-assembly process is determined by the competition between thermodynamic consideration and kinetic factors. The coalescence and sintering of the AuNR assembly was accomplished by both furnace thermal annealing and rapid thermal annealing at low temperatures. The mechanism through which efficient sintering occurred is investigated with scanning electron microscopy. It is found that the sintering process initially takes place locally, resulting in small AuNR aggregates. Eventually the aggregates grow into a globally continuous, percolating network structure. In addition, the overall heat transfer coefficient was measured in an environmental scanning electron microscope by following droplet growth over time. The present study opens up new opportunities to accomplish controlled assembly of nanoparticles with high concentration for different nanorod-based applications as well as

  18. Phase-field modeling of the formation of lamellar nanostructures in diblock copolymer thin films under inplanar electric fields.

    PubMed

    Wu, Xiang-Fa; Dzenis, Yuris A

    2008-03-01

    Recent experiments show that external inplanar electric field can be employed to guide the molecular self-assembly in diblock copolymer (BCP) thin films to form lamellar nanostructures with potential applications in nanotechnology. We study this self-assembly process through a detailed coarse-grained phase-separation modeling. During the process, the free energy of the BCP films is modeled as the Ginzburg-Landau free energy with nonlocal interaction and electrostatic coupling. The resulting Cahn-Hilliard (CH) equation is solved using an efficient semi-implicit Fourier-spectral algorithm. Numerical results show that the morphology of order parameter formed in either symmetric or asymmetric BCP thin films is strongly influenced by the electric field. For symmetrical BCPs, highly ordered lamellar nanostructures evolved along the direction of the electric field. Phase nucleation and dislocation climbing in the BCP films predicted by the numerical simulation are in a good agreement with those observed in recent BCP electronanolithography. For asymmetrical BCPs, numerical simulation shows that nanodots are guided to align to the electric field. Furthermore, in the case of high electric field, nanodots formed in asymmetrical BCPs may further convert into highly ordered lamellar nanostructures (sphere-to-cylinder transition) parallel to the electric field. Effects of the magnitude of electric field, BCP asymmetry, and molecular interaction of BCPs on the self-assembly process are examined in detail using the numerical scheme developed in this study. The present study can be used for the prediction of the formation of nanostructures in BCP thin films and the quality control of BCP-based nanomanufacturing through optimizing the external electric fields.

  19. Chiral imprinting of diblock copolymer single-chain particles.

    PubMed

    Njikang, Gabriel; Liu, Guojun; Hong, Liangzhi

    2011-06-07

    This Article reports the molecular imprinting of polymer single-chain particles that have a radius ∼3.7 nm. For this, the template L-phenylalanine anilide or L-ΦAA and a diblock copolymer PtBA-b-P(CEMA-r-CA) were used. Here, PtBA denotes poly(tert-butyl acrylate), and P(CEMA-r-CA) denotes a random block consisting of cinnamoyloxyethyl methacrylate (CEMA) and carboxyl-bearing (CA) units. In CHCl(3)/cyclohexane (CHX) with 64 vol % of CHX or at f(CHX) = 64%, a block-selective solvent for PtBA, PtBA-b-P(CEMA-r-CA) formed spherical micelles. The core consisted of the insoluble P(CEMA-r-CA) block and L-ΦAA, which complexed with the CA groups. Pumping slowly this micellar solution into stirred CHCl(3)/(CHX) at f(CHX) = 64% triggered micelle dissociation into single-chain micelles, which comprised presumably a solubilized PtBA tail and a collapsed P(CEMA-r-CA)/L-ΦAA head. Because the solvent reservoir was under constant UV irradiation, the photo-cross-linkable units in the P(CEMA-r-CA) head cross-linked, and the single-chain micelles were converted into cross-linked single-chain micelles or tadpoles. Synchronizing the micelle addition and photoreaction rates allowed the preparation, from this protocol, of essentially pure tadpoles at high final polymer concentrations. Imprinted tadpoles were procured after L-ΦAA was extracted from the tadpole heads. Under optimized conditions, the produced imprinted tadpoles had exceptionally high binding capacity and high selectivity for L-ΦAA. In addition, the rates of L-ΦAA release from and rebinding by the particles were high.

  20. Dodecagonal quasicrystalline order in a diblock copolymer melt

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

    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

  1. Shear Alignment of Diblock Copolymers for Patterning Nanowire Meshes

    SciTech Connect

    Gustafson, Kyle T.

    2016-09-08

    Metallic nanowire meshes are useful as cheap, flexible alternatives to indium tin oxide – an expensive, brittle material used in transparent conductive electrodes. We have fabricated nanowire meshes over areas up to 2.5 cm2 by: 1) mechanically aligning parallel rows of diblock copolymer (diBCP) microdomains; 2) selectively infiltrating those domains with metallic ions; 3) etching away the diBCP template; 4) sintering to reduce ions to metal nanowires; and, 5) repeating steps 1 – 4 on the same sample at a 90° offset. We aligned parallel rows of polystyrene-b-poly(2-vinylpyridine) [PS(48.5 kDa)-b-P2VP(14.5 kDa)] microdomains by heating above its glass transition temperature (Tg ≈ 100°C), applying mechanical shear pressure (33 kPa) and normal force (13.7 N), and cooling below Tg. DiBCP samples were submerged in aqueous solutions of metallic ions (15 – 40 mM ions; 0.1 – 0.5 M HCl) for 30 – 90 minutes, which coordinate to nitrogen in P2VP. Subsequent ozone-etching and sintering steps yielded parallel nanowires. We aimed to optimize alignment parameters (e.g. shear and normal pressures, alignment duration, and PDMS thickness) to improve the quality, reproducibility, and scalability of meshes. We also investigated metals other than Pt and Au that may be patterned using this technique (Cu, Ag).

  2. Hierarchical Nanostructures Self-Assembled from a Mixture System Containing Rod-Coil Block Copolymers and Rigid Homopolymers

    PubMed Central

    Li, Yongliang; Jiang, Tao; Lin, Shaoliang; Lin, Jiaping; Cai, Chunhua; Zhu, Xingyu

    2015-01-01

    Self-assembly behavior of a mixture system containing rod-coil block copolymers and rigid homopolymers was investigated by using Brownian dynamics simulations. The morphologies of formed hierarchical self-assemblies were found to be dependent on the Lennard-Jones (LJ) interaction εRR between rod blocks, lengths of rod and coil blocks in copolymer, and mixture ratio of block copolymers to homopolymers. As the εRR value decreases, the self-assembled structures of mixtures are transformed from an abacus-like structure to a helical structure, to a plain fiber, and finally are broken into unimers. The order parameter of rod blocks was calculated to confirm the structure transition. Through varying the length of rod and coil blocks, the regions of thermodynamic stability of abacus, helix, plain fiber, and unimers were mapped. Moreover, it was discovered that two levels of rod block ordering exist in the helices. The block copolymers are helically wrapped on the homopolymer bundles to form helical string, while the rod blocks are twistingly packed inside the string. In addition, the simulation results are in good agreement with experimental observations. The present work reveals the mechanism behind the formation of helical (experimentally super-helical) structures and may provide useful information for design and preparation of the complex structures. PMID:25965726

  3. In Situ Visualization of Block Copolymer Self-Assembly in Organic Media by Super-Resolution Fluorescence Microscopy.

    PubMed

    Boott, Charlotte E; Laine, Romain F; Mahou, Pierre; Finnegan, John R; Leitao, Erin M; Webb, Stephen E D; Kaminski, Clemens F; Manners, Ian

    2015-12-14

    Analytical methods that enable visualization of nanomaterials derived from solution self-assembly processes in organic solvents are highly desirable. Herein, we demonstrate the use of stimulated emission depletion microscopy (STED) and single molecule localization microscopy (SMLM) to map living crystallization-driven block copolymer (BCP) self-assembly in organic media at the sub-diffraction scale. Four different dyes were successfully used for single-colour super-resolution imaging of the BCP nanostructures allowing micelle length distributions to be determined in situ. Dual-colour SMLM imaging was used to measure and compare the rate of addition of red fluorescent BCP to the termini of green fluorescent seed micelles to generate block comicelles. Although well-established for aqueous systems, the results highlight the potential of super-resolution microscopy techniques for the interrogation of self-assembly processes in organic media.

  4. Prediction of Electric Field Effects on Defect-Free Self-Assembled Nano-Patterning of Block Copolymer.

    PubMed

    Kim, Sang-Kon

    2016-03-01

    For future semiconductor device scaling, self-assembly, directed self-assembly (DSA) of block copolymers (BCPs), is a promising method with simplified processing conditions; however, critical challenge is defect control for fine pattern. Electric field is a method for the defect control. In this paper, for electric field effects to jog defects, the electric field induced self-assembled patterns is modeled and simulated by using the Monte Carlo method of dielectric polymers, the self-consistent-field theory (SCFT), and the Navier-Stokes equation. Electric field effects are quantified by using defect degree. Defective patterns are forced to undergo a phase transition to lamellar phase under electric field. For the high electric field, the excess free energy for the defect-free state becomes small. Simulation results can help to optimize electric field and process time in terms of defect area.

  5. Directing the self-assembly of block copolymers into a metastable complex network phase via a deep and rapid quench.

    PubMed

    Müller, Marcus; Sun, De-Wen

    2013-12-27

    The free-energy landscape of self-assembling block copolymer systems is characterized by a multitude of metastable minima. Using particle-based simulations of a soft, coarse-grained model, we explore opportunities to reproducibly direct the spontaneous ordering of these self-assembling systems into a metastable complex network morphology--specifically, Schoen's I-WP periodic minimal surface--starting from a highly unstable state that is generated by a rapid expansion. This process-directed self-assembly provides an alternative to fine-tuning molecular architecture or blending for fabricating complex network structures. Comparing our particle-based simulation results to recently developed free-energy techniques, we critically assess their ability to predict spontaneous formation and highlight the importance of nonequilibrium molecular conformations in the starting state and the local conservation of density.

  6. Diblock copolymers containing compositionally-uniform poly(HEMA-co-DMAEMA)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guice, Kyle; Teoh, Raymond; Loo, Yueh-Lin

    2007-03-01

    Hydroxyethyl methacrylate (HEMA) and dimethylaminoethyl methacrylate (DMAEMA) have been investigated as precursors for pH-responsive hydrogels. DMAEMA contains tertiary amine functionality that is reversibly protonated below its pKa. The swelling characteristics of poly(HEMA-co-DMAEMA) hydrogels are dependent on the distribution of DMAEMA, which in turn depends on the monomer composition and the monomer reactivity ratios. We find that the reactivity ratios are highly solvent dependent. Gradient copolymers are favored in most solvents at all monomer compositions. In dimethylsulfoxide, however, the reactivity ratios are near unity; compositionally-uniform poly(HEMA-co-DMAEMA) copolymers can therefore be synthesized at any composition. We have synthesized diblock copolymers containing poly(HEMA-co-DMAEMA) by a combination of atom transfer radical polymerization and click chemistry. The resulting diblock copolymers have controlled molecular weights, molecular weight distributions, and comonomer distributions, and they form well-defined periodic nanoscale structures consistent with their molecular characteristics.

  7. Simulation of free energies of bicontinuous morphologies formed through block copolymer/homopolymer self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Padmanabhan, Poornima; Martinez-Veracoechea, Francisco; Escobedo, Fernando

    Different types of bicontinuous phases can be formed from A-B diblock copolymers by the addition of A-type homopolymers over a range of compositions and relative chain lengths. Particle-based molecular simulations were used to study three bicontinuous phases - double gyroid (G), double diamond (D) and plumber's nightmare (P) - near their triple point of coexistence. For 3-D ordered phases, the stability of the morphology formed in simulation is highly sensitive to box size whose exact size is unknown a-priori. Accurate free energy estimates are required to ascertain the stable phase, particularly when multiple competing phases spontaneously form at the conditions of interest. A variant of thermodynamic integration was implemented to obtain free energies and hence identify the stable phases and their optimal box sizes by tracing a reversible path that connects the ordered and disordered phases. Clear evidence was found of D-G and D-P phase coexistence, consistent with previous predictions for the same blend using Self-consistent field theory. Our simulations also allowed us to examine the microscopic details of these coexisting bicontinuous phases and detect key differences between the microstructure of their nodes and struts.

  8. Morphologies of strongly-segregated polystyrene - polydimethylsiloxane diblock copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    Rangarajan, P.; Adams, J.L., Register, R.A.

    1995-12-31

    Five polystyrene-polydimethylsiloxane (PS/PDMS) diblocks were synthesized by sequential anionic polymerization, and their morphologies characterized by small-angle x-ray scattering (SAXS) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). All materials are microphase-separated in toluene-cast films, and estimates of the interaction parameter {chi} indicate that these materials are all strongly segregated. The strength of segregation is confirmed by differential scanning calorimetry, which indicates that the glass transition temperature of the PDMS phase is independent of molecular weight and composition, and essentially identical to that of PDMS homopolymer. The experimentally-determined phase diagram is strongly skewed towards low styrene volume fractions, even more than the styrene-isoprene (SI) diblock phase diagram, even though little conformational asymmetry should exist in the PS/PDMS system. The PS/PDMS diblocks form substantially larger microdomain structures than analogous SI diblocks reflecting the stronger segregation strength.

  9. Directed Self-Assembly of Block Copolymers in 3D Templates Fabricated by Multiphoton Lithography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Singer, Jonathan; Thomas, Edwin

    2012-02-01

    Confinement of block-copolymers (BCP) within physical templates has been used as a method to both enhance the microdomain order and manipulate the morphology. Previous investigations have focused on 1D or quasi-2D templates (e.g. trenches, cylindrical pores) patterned at a variety of length scales. We have sought to employ the nearly-arbitrary structural fabrication afforded by multiphoton direct write lithography (MPL) to extend these stereolithographic control techniques to 3D directed assembly. Complex architectures, for example those formed by large scale lithographic techniques such as interference lithography or self-assembly, can be broken down into simplifier component structures: e.g. multibranch junctions, bends, and symmetric or asymmetric connecting pores. By utilizing MPL, we can fabricate model geometries possessing these features written in photoresist at various scales. We then infiltrate these structures with PS-PDMS BCP and observe the resulting morphology by SEM from focused ion beam cross-sections, allowing development of design rules that may be applied towards progressively more complex templates and the fabrication of 3D hierarchical structures with highly ordered and novel domain features spanning from the micron to the 10 nm scale.

  10. Post-directed-self-assembly membrane fabrication for in situ analysis of block copolymer structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ren, J.; Ocola, L. E.; Divan, R.; Czaplewski, D. A.; Segal-Peretz, T.; Xiong, S.; Kline, R. J.; Arges, C. G.; Nealey, P. F.

    2016-10-01

    Full characterization of the three-dimensional structures resulting from the directed self-assembly (DSA) of block copolymers (BCP) remains a difficult challenge. Transmission electron microscope (TEM) tomography and resonant soft x-ray scattering have emerged as powerful and complementary methods for through-film characterization; both techniques require samples to be prepared on specialized membrane substrates. Here we report a generalizable process to implement BCP DSA with density multiplication on silicon nitride membranes. A key feature of the process developed here is that it does not introduce any artefacts or damage to the polymer assemblies as DSA is performed prior to back-etched membrane formation. Because most research and applications of BCP lithography are based on silicon substrates, process variations introduced by implementing DSA on a silicon nitride/silicon stack versus silicon were identified and mitigated. Using full-wafers, membranes were fabricated with different sizes and layouts to enable both TEM and x-ray characterization. Finally, both techniques were used to characterize structures resulting from the DSA of lamella-forming BCP with density multiplication.

  11. Biomimetic Nanocomposites of Calcium Phosphate and Self-Assembling Triblock and Pentablock Copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    Enlow, Drew Lenzen

    2006-01-01

    In an effort to mimic the growth of natural bone, self-assembling, micelle and gel-forming copolymers were used as a template for calcium phosphate precipitation. Because of the cationic characteristics imparted by PDEAEM end group additions to commercially available Pluronic{reg_sign} Fl27, a direct ionic attraction mechanism was utilized and a polymer-brushite nanocomposite spheres were produced. Brushite coated spherical micelles with diameters of ~40 nm, and agglomerates of these particles (on the order of 0.5 μm) were obtained. Thickness and durability of the calcium phosphate coating, and the extent of agglomeration were studied. The coating has been shown to be robust enough to retain its integrity even below polymer critical micelle concentration and/or temperature. Calcium phosphate-polymer gel nanocomposites were also prepared. Gel samples appeared as a single phase network of agglomerated spherical micelles, and had a final calcium phosphate concentration of up to 15 wt%. Analysis with x-ray diffraction and NMR indicated a disordered brushite phase with the phosphate groups linking inorganic phase to the polymer.

  12. Templated fabrication of fiber-basket polymersomes via crystallization-driven block copolymer self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Jia, Lin; Tong, Lemuel; Liang, Yi; Petretic, Amy; Guerin, Gerald; Manners, Ian; Winnik, Mitchell A

    2014-11-26

    Immobilizing uniform nanostructures on a mesoscale substrate is a promising approach to prepare nanometer to micrometer sized materials with new functionalities. The hierarchical structures formed depend on both the nature of the substrate and the components deposited. In this paper, we describe the use of colloidal polystyrene microbeads as a sacrificial template to create a nanofibrous network coating consisting of elongated block copolymer micelles. This network has a secondary structure very different from that of conformal coatings obtained by other methods. In addition, the fibers of the network could be elongated by crystallization-driven self-assembly. The network was locked in place by cross-linking the micelles through in situ generation of small Pt nanoparticles. Subsequent removal of the sacrificial template gave an open vesicular structure. To demonstrate further transformation of the membrane, we showed that the cross-linked micelles could also be used to embed silver nanoparticles. The sacrificial template contained known amounts of Tb and Tm ions, allowing us to estimate via atomic mass spectrometry that 85% of the template surface was covered with micelle seeds. This approach to fabricating hierarchical coating structures expands the generality and scope of template-assisted synthesis to build advanced hierarchical materials with precise morphological control.

  13. Tuning the strength of chemical patterns for directed self-assembly of block copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Williamson, Lance; Lin, Guanyang; Cao, Yi; Gronheid, Roel; Nealey, Paul

    2014-03-01

    Directed self-assembly (DSA) of block copolymers (BCP) via chemo-epitaxy is a potential lithographic solution to patterns of dense features. The LiNe (Liu-Nealey) flow was used to fabricate the chemical pattern, which guides the BCP due to the different wetting behavior of the materials. Fine control of both the chemical pattern chemistry and geometry are important for DSA of BCP. Furthermore, wetting behavior considerations for DSA extend beyond pattern design and include the surrounding region. BCP DSA would be easier to integrate into device design if the patterned region were isolated with a featureless region (horizontal lamellar BCP assembly) rather than undirected BCP fingerprint structures. This paper addresses two processing steps found to be modifying the guide material. For one, the backfill brush grafts to the cross-linked polystyrene (XPS), albeit at a lower rate than the brush grafts to the exposed substrate. Undersaturating the backfill brush only moderately improves the XPS wetting behavior, but also negatively impacts the background region of the chemical pattern. Replacing the brush grafting functionality so that the brush grafts at lower annealing conditions also did not avoid the side reaction between the brush and the XPS. The other step modifying the XPS is the trim etch. Replacing the trim etch process was effective at generating a chemical pattern that can orient the BCP horizontally on a stripe 11 L0 wide passing through a field of chemical pattern.

  14. Tuning thermoresponsive behavior of diblock copolymers and their gold core hybrids: part 1. Importance of placement of amphiphilic end groups on the diblock copolymers.

    PubMed

    Chen, Ning; Xiang, Xu; Tiwari, Ashutosh; Heiden, Patricia A

    2013-02-01

    We report the effects of use and placement of amphiphilic end groups as a valuable tool to achieve significant changes in the thermoresponsive properties of diblock copolymers without the need to resort to compositional changes. We prepared diblock copolymers of di(ethylene glycol) methyl ether methacrylate and oligo(ethylene glycol) methyl ether acrylate with phenyl dithioester and carboxylic acid chain ends and compared the effects of placement of these amphiphilic chain ends on the cloud points of the copolymers. All the copolymers were high molecular weight (greater than 20 kDa) with a polydispersity between 1.1 and 1.2, and the cloud points were measured by UV-vis spectrophotometry and reported as the temperature at 50% normalized transmission. The thermoresponse showed a significant dependency on end group placement, reaching as much as a 28°C difference in measured cloud point simply by exchanging end group placement rather than compositional changes. The effect is attributed to changes in the solvation and mobility from chain end placement affecting the degree of association of the chains. The underlying effect is due to the hydrophilic/hydrophobic balance in combination with the use of amphiphilic chain end placement that can be applied to copolymers with different blocks at the chain ends. This work shows that substantial changes in thermo-response properties can be achieved by re-arranging monomer components rather than changing monomer composition. This may have value in biomedical materials where the range of acceptable monomers is limited.

  15. Peptide-directed self-assembly of functionalized polymeric nanoparticles part I: design and self-assembly of peptide-copolymer conjugates into nanoparticle fibers and 3D scaffolds.

    PubMed

    Ding, Xiaochu; Janjanam, Jagadeesh; Tiwari, Ashutosh; Thompson, Martin; Heiden, Patricia A

    2014-06-01

    A robust self-assembly of nanoparticles into fibers and 3D scaffolds is designed and fabricated by functionalizing a RAFT-polymerized amphiphilic triblock copolymer with designer ionic complementary peptides so that the assembled core-shell polymeric nanoparticles are directed by peptide assembly into continuous "nanoparticle fibers," ultimately leading to 3D fiber scaffolds. The assembled nanostructure is confirmed by FESEM and optical microscopy. The assembly is not hindered when a protein (insulin) is incorporated within the nanoparticles as an active ingredient. MTS cytotoxicity tests on SW-620 cell lines show that the peptides, copolymers, and peptide-copolymer conjugates are biocompatible. The methodology of self-assembled nanoparticle fibers and 3D scaffolds is intended to combine the advantages of a flexible hydrogel scaffold with the versatility of controlled release nanoparticles to offer unprecedented ability to incorporate desired drug(s) within a self-assembled scaffold system with individual control over the release of each drug.

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. Formation of Frank-Kasper σ-phase from polydisperse diblock copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Meijiao; Li, Weihua; Shi, An-Chang

    Recent experimental and theoretical studies have revealed a number of complex spherical phases including the complex Frank-Kasper σ-phase, which consists of 30 spheres in a unit cell. It is desirable to understand the mechanisms for the formation of the complex spherical phases such as the A15-phase and the Frank-Kasper σ-phase in block copolymers. Based on the observation that the A15-phase and the Frank-Kasper σ-phase are composed of spherical domains with different sizes, we hypothesize that polydispersity of the block copolymers could be used to obtain these complex phases. We tested this hypothesis by carrying out self-consistent field theory for polydisperse AB diblock copolymers. Specially we studied the relative stability of various spherical phases, including the fcc, bcc, A15 and Frank_Kasper σ-phase, in binary blends composed of AB block copolymers different lengths of the A-blocks. Our results revealed that the Frank-Kasper σ-phase could be stabilized by tailoring the length ratio as well as the compositions of the two diblock copolymers. The distribution of the diblocks in the system indicates that copolymer segregation is the origin of the formation of spherical domains with different sizes.

  19. Self-assembled, thermoresponsive micelles based on triblock PMMA-b-PNIPAAm-b-PMMA copolymer for drug delivery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Y. Y.; Zhang, X. Z.; Zhu, J. L.; Cheng, H.; Cheng, S. X.; Zhuo, R. X.

    2007-05-01

    A novel thermosensitive amphiphilic ABA triblock poly(methyl methacrylate)-b-poly(N-isopropylacrylamide)-b-poly(methyl methacrylate) copolymer (PMMA-b-PNIPAAm-b-PMMA) comprised of two hydrophobic PMMA segments and one hydrophilic PNIPAAm segment was designed and synthesized. The structure of the copolymer was characterized by FT-IR, 1HNMR, and GPC analysis. The cytotoxicity study showed that the PMMA-b-PNIPAAm-b-PMMA copolymer exhibited low cytotoxicity. The copolymer was capable of self-assembling into micelles in water and demonstrated temperature sensitivity at around 34.5 °C. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) showed that the micelles exhibit nanosized spherical morphology within a size range of 60 nm with a critical micellar concentration (CMC) at 10 mg l-1. The drug-loading PMMA-b-PNIPAAm-b-PMMA micelles showed thermosensitive-controlled release which indicates the potential of PMMA-b-PNIPAAm-b-PMMA micelles as drug carriers.

  20. Self-assembled Oniontype Multiferroic Nanostructures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ren, Shenqiang; Briber, Robert M.; Wuttig, Manfred

    2009-03-01

    Spontaneously self-assembled oniontype multiferroic nanostructures based on block copolymers as templating materials are reported. Diblock copolymer containing two different magnetoelectric precursors separately segregated to the two microdomains have been shown to form well-ordered templated lamellar structures. Onion-type multilamellar ordered multiferroic (PZT/CoFe2O4) nanostructures have been induced by room temperature solvent annealing in a magnetic field oriented perpendicular to the plane of the film. The evolution of the onion-like microstructure has been characterized by AFM, MFM, and TEM. The structure retains lamellar periodicity observed at zero field. The onion structure is superparamagnetic above and antiferromagnetic below the blocking temperature. This templating process opens a route for nanometer-scale patterning of magnetic toroids by means of self-assembly on length scales that are difficult to obtain by standard lithography techniques.

  1. Controlling the self-assembly structure of magnetic nanoparticles and amphiphilic block-copolymers: from micelles to vesicles.

    PubMed

    Hickey, Robert J; Haynes, Alyssa S; Kikkawa, James M; Park, So-Jung

    2011-02-09

    We report how to control the self-assembly of magnetic nanoparticles and a prototypical amphiphilic block-copolymer composed of poly(acrylic acid) and polystyrene (PAA-b-PS). Three distinct structures were obtained by controlling the solvent-nanoparticle and polymer-nanoparticle interactions: (1) polymersomes densely packed with nanoparticles (magneto-polymersomes), (2) core-shell type polymer assemblies where nanoparticles are radially arranged at the interface between the polymer core and the shell (magneto-core shell), and (3) polymer micelles where nanoparticles are homogeneously incorporated (magneto-micelles). Importantly, we show that the incorporation of nanoparticles drastically affects the self-assembly structure of block-copolymers by modifying the relative volume ratio between the hydrophobic block and the hydrophilic block. As a consequence, the self-assembly of micelle-forming block-copolymers typically produces magneto-polymersomes instead of magneto-micelles. On the other hand, vesicle-forming polymers tend to form magneto-micelles due to the solubilization of nanoparticles in polymer assemblies. The nanoparticle-polymer interaction also controls the nanoparticle arrangement in the polymer matrix. In N,N-dimethylformamide (DMF) where PS is not well-solvated, nanoparticles segregate from PS and form unique radial assemblies. In tetrahydrofuran (THF), which is a good solvent for both nanoparticles and PS, nanoparticles are homogeneously distributed in the polymer matrix. Furthermore, we demonstrated that the morphology of nanoparticle-encapsulating polymer assemblies significantly affects their magnetic relaxation properties, emphasizing the importance of the self-assembly structure and nanoparticle arrangement as well as the size of the assemblies.

  2. Dissipative particle dynamics simulations on self-assembly of rod-coil-rod triblock copolymers in a rod-selective solvent

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Jian-Hua; Fan, Zhong-Xiang; Ma, Ze-Xin

    2013-08-01

    Self-assembly of rod-coil-rod ABA triblock copolymers in a rod-selective solvent is investigated by using dissipative particle dynamics simulations. The morphologies of the self-assembled aggregates are dependent on the number of copolymers in the aggregate and the rod length of the copolymer. We observe vesicles at short rod block and bowl-like aggregates at slightly longer rod block. In the vesicle region near the phase boundary, metastable bowl-like aggregates can be observed and be transformed into vesicles by annealing process. A transition from the bowl-like structure to the vesicle is observed by increasing the solvophobicity of the mid-coil block. In this study, the difference between the self-assembly of fully flexible ABA triblock copolymer and that of rod-coil-rod triblock copolymer is also discussed.

  3. 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.

  4. Toughening of epoxies based on self-assembly of nano-sized amphiphilic block copolymer micelles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Jia

    As a part of a larger effort towards the fundamental understanding of mechanical behaviors of polymers toughened by nanoparticles, this dissertation focuses on the structure-property relationship of epoxies modified with nano-sized poly(ethylene-alt-propylene)-b-poly(ethylene oxide) (PEP-PEO) block copolymer (BCP) micelle particles. The amphiphilic BCP toughener was incorporated into a liquid epoxy resin and self-assembled into well-dispersed 15 nm spherical micelle particles. The nano-sized BCP, at 5 wt% loading, can significantly improve the fracture toughness of epoxy (ca. 180% improvement) without reducing modulus at room temperature and exhibits only a slight drop (ca. 5°C) in glass transition temperature (Tg). The toughening mechanisms were found to be BCP micelle nanoparticle cavitation, followed by matrix shear banding, which mainly accounted for the observed remarkable toughening effect. The unexpected "nano-cavitation" phenomenon cannot be predicted by existing physical models. The plausible causes for the observed nano-scale cavitation and other mechanical behaviors may include the unique structural characteristics of BCP micelles and the influence from the surrounding epoxy network, which is significantly modified by the epoxy-miscible PEO block. Other mechanisms, such as crack tip blunting, may also play a role in the toughening. Structure-property relationships of this nano-domain modified polymer are discussed. In addition, other important factors, such as strain rate dependence and matrix crosslink density effect on toughening, have been investigated. This BCP toughening approach and conventional rubber toughening techniques are compared. Insights on the decoupling of modulus, toughness, and Tg for designing high performance thermosetting materials with desirable physical and mechanical properties are discussed.

  5. Streamlined etch integration with a unique neutral layer for self-assembled block copolymers (BCPs)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hockey, Mary Ann; Xu, Kui; Wang, Yubao; Guerrero, Douglas J.; Calderas, Eric

    2014-03-01

    A multifunctional hardmask neutral layer (HM NL) was developed to improve etch resistance capabilities, enhance reflectance control, and match the surface energy properties required for polystyrene block copolymers (PS-b-PMMA). This HM NL minimizes the number of substrate deposition steps required in graphoepitaxy directed self-assembly (DSA) process flows. A separate brush layer is replaced by incorporating neutral layer properties into the hardmask to achieve microphase separation of BCP during thermal annealing. The reflection control and etch resistance capabilities are inherent in the chemical composition, thus eliminating the need for separate thin film layers to address absorbance and etch criteria. We initially demonstrated successful implementation of the HM NL using conventional PS-b-PMMA. A series of BCP formulations were synthesized with L0 values ranging from 28 nm to 17 nm to test the versatility of the HM NL. Quality "fingerprint" patterns or microphase separation using 230°-250°C annealing for 3-5 minutes was achieved for an array of modified BCP materials. The HM NL had water contact angles at 78°-80° and polarities in the 5-6 dyne/cm range. The scope of BCP platform compositions evaluated consists of a 20° water contact angle variance and a 10-dyne/cm range in polarities. All BCP derivatives were coated directly onto the HM NL followed by thermal annealing followed by SEM analysis for effective "fingerprint" patterns. We offer a simplified alternative path for high etch resistance in a graphoepitaxy DSA flow employing a single-layer hardmask for etch resistance demonstrated to be compatible with diverse BCP-modified chemical formulations.

  6. Agarose hydrogels embedded with pH-responsive diblock copolymer micelles for triggered release of substances.

    PubMed

    Jin, Naixiong; Morin, Emily A; Henn, Daniel M; Cao, Yu; Woodcock, Jeremiah W; Tang, Shuangcheng; He, Wei; Zhao, Bin

    2013-08-12

    Hybrid agarose hydrogels embedded with pH-responsive diblock copolymers micelles were developed to achieve functional hydrogels capable of stimulus-triggered drug release. Specifically, a well-defined poly(ethylene oxide) (PEO)-based diblock copolymer, PEO-b-poly(2-(N,N-diisopropylamino)ethyl methacrylate) (PEO(113)-b-PDPAEMA(31), where the subscripts represent the degrees of polymerization of two blocks), was synthesized by atom transfer radical polymerization. PDPAEMA is a pH-responsive polymer with a pKa value of 6.3. The PEO(113)-b-PDPAEMA(31) micelles were formed by a solvent-switching method, and their pH-dependent dissociation behavior was investigated by dynamic light scattering and fluorescence spectroscopy. Both studies indicated that the micelles were completely disassembled at pH = 6.40. The biocompatibility of PEO(113)-b-PDPAEMA(31) micelles was demonstrated by in vitro primary cortical neural culture. Hybrid agarose hydrogels were made by cooling 1.0 wt % agarose solutions that contained various amounts of PEO(113)-b-PDPAEMA(31) micelles at either 2 or 4 °C. Rheological measurements showed that the mechanical properties of gels were not significantly adversely affected by the incorporation of diblock copolymer micelles with a concentration as high as 5.0 mg/g. Using Nile Red as a model hydrophobic drug, its incorporation into the core of diblock copolymer micelles was demonstrated. Characterized by fluorescent spectroscopy, the release of Nile Red from the hybrid hydrogel was shown to be controllable by pH due to the responsiveness of the block copolymer micelles. Based on the prominent use of agarose gels as scaffolds for cell transplantation for neural repair, the hybrid hydrogels embedded with stimuli-responsive block copolymer micelles could allow the controlled delivery of hydrophobic neuroprotective agents to improve survival of transplanted cells in tune with signals from the surrounding pathological environment.

  7. Complex macrophase-separated nanostructure induced by microphase separation in binary blends of lamellar diblock copolymer thin films.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jianqi; Posselt, Dorthe; Smilgies, Detlef-M; Perlich, Jan; Kyriakos, Konstantinos; Jaksch, Sebastian; Papadakis, Christine M

    2014-09-01

    The nanostructures of thin films spin-coated from binary blends of compositionally symmetric polystyrene-b-polybutadiene (PS-b-PB) diblock copolymer having different molar masses are investigated by means of atomic force microscopy (AFM) and grazing-incidence small-angle X-ray scattering (GISAXS) after spin-coating and after subsequent solvent vapor annealing (SVA). In thin films of the pure diblock copolymers having high or low molar mass, the lamellae are perpendicular or parallel to the substrate, respectively. The as-prepared binary blend thin films feature mainly perpendicular lamellae in a one-phase state, indicating that the higher molar mass diblock copolymer dominates the lamellar orientation. The lamellar thickness decreases linearly with increasing volume fraction of the low molar mass diblock copolymer. After SVA, well-defined macrophase-separated nanostructures appear, which feature parallel lamellae near the film surface and perpendicular ones in the bulk.

  8. Amphiphilic graft copolymers with ethyl cellulose backbone: Synthesis, self-assembly and tunable temperature-CO2 response.

    PubMed

    Yuan, Weizhong; Zou, Hui; Shen, Jin

    2016-01-20

    Amphiphilic ethyl cellulose-graft-poly(N,N-dimethylaminoethyl methacrylate) (EC-g-PDMAEMA) and ethyl cellulose-graft-poly(2-(2-methoxyethoxy)ethyl methacrylate-co-N,N-dimethylaminoethyl methacrylate) (EC-g-P(MEO2MA-co-DMAEMA)) graft copolymers were easily synthesized by atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP). The micelles self-assembled from the copolymer presented switchable temperature-CO2 dually responsive properties. The value of lower critical solution temperature (LCST) for the copolymer micelle solutions could be adjusted by CO2/Ar. Moreover, due to the alteration of the ratio of DMAEMA to MEO2MA, the LCST values of the micelle solutions decreased with the increase of MEO2MA in copolymer. The temperature-CO2 dually responsive properties of the copolymer were reversible and could be accomplished through altering the temperature and bubbling CO2/Ar. The hydrodynamic radius (Rh) of the copolymer micelles was also influenced by the ratio of DMAEMA to MEO2MA and the stimuli of temperature and CO2/Ar. As a drug release system, the copolymer micelles could achieve the control release of doxorubicin (DOX) by changing the temperature and alternatively bubbling CO2/Ar.

  9. Combination chemotherapy using core-shell nanoparticles through the self-assembly of HPMA-based copolymers and degradable polyester.

    PubMed

    Jäger, Eliézer; Jäger, Alessandro; Chytil, Petr; Etrych, Tomáš; Ríhová, Blanka; Giacomelli, Fernando Carlos; Stěpánek, Petr; Ulbrich, Karel

    2013-01-28

    The preparation of core-shell polymeric nanoparticles simultaneously loaded with docetaxel (DTXL) and doxorubicin (DOX) is reported herein. The self-assembly of the aliphatic biodegradable copolyester PBS/PBDL (poly(butylene succinate-co-butylene dilinoleate)) and HPMA-based copolymers (N-(2-hydroxypropyl)methacrylamide-based copolymers) hydrophobically modified by the incorporation of cholesterol led to the formation of narrow-size-distributed (PDI<0.10) sub-200-nm polymeric nanoparticles suitable for passive tumor-targeting drug delivery based on the size-dependent EPR (enhanced permeability and retention) effect. The PHPMA provided to the self-assembled nanoparticle stability against aggregation as evaluated in vitro. The highly hydrophobic drug docetaxel (DTXL) was physically entrapped within the PBS/PBDL copolyester core and the hydrophilic drug doxorubicin hydrochloride (DOX·HCl) was chemically conjugated to the reactive PHPMA copolymer shell via hydrazone bonding that allowed its pH-sensitive release. This strategy enabled the combination chemotherapy by the simultaneous DOX and DTXL drug delivery. The structure of the nanoparticles was characterized in detail using static (SLS), dynamic (DLS) and electrophoretic (ELS) light scattering besides transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The use of nanoparticles simultaneously loaded with DTXL and DOX provided a more efficient suppression of tumor-cell growth in mice bearing EL-4 T cell lymphoma when compared to the effect of nanoparticles loaded with either DTXL or DOX separately. Additionally, the obtained self-assembled nanoparticles enable further development of targeting strategies based on the use of multiple ligands attached to an HPMA copolymer on the particle surface for simultaneous passive and active targeting and different combination therapies.

  10. Diblock copolymer adsorption onto a solid surface as revealed by evanescent wave ellipsometry

    SciTech Connect

    Kim, M.W. ); Russell, T.P. . Almaden Research Center); Moses, T.; Chen, W.; Shen, Y.R. . Center for Advanced Materials Univ. of California, Berkeley, CA . Dept. of Physics)

    1994-12-05

    The interfacial behavior of diblock copolymers play an important role in many practical applications, for example, polymer compatibilization, adhesion, and colloid stabilization. There has been considerable theoretical and experimental effort to understand the adsorption behavior of diblock copolymers from a solution onto a solid surface. Recent neutron reflectivity measurements on solutions of symmetric diblock copolymers of polystyrene and poly(methyl methacrylate), denoted P(S-b-MMA), near a quartz wall have shown that the PMMA segments adsorb preferentially onto the quartz forming a dense layer. However, the segmental concentration of polystyrene (PS) was too low to be observable. Evanescent wave ellipsometry, EWE, on the other hand, allows one to determine the density of molecules adsorbed onto a surface without labeling the segments with deuterium. Here, EWE results on P(S-b-MMA) adsorbed onto a solid substrate are presented as a function of molecular weight. It is shown that the adsorbed amount of copolymer is maximized for a particular molecular weight. This result contradicts theoretical predictions, and a possible origin of this discrepancy is provided.

  11. Effect of sequence dispersity on morphology of tapered diblock copolymers from molecular dynamics simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Levine, William G.; Seo, Youngmi; Brown, Jonathan R.; Hall, Lisa M.

    2016-12-01

    Tapered diblock copolymers are similar to typical AB diblock copolymers but have an added transition region between the two blocks which changes gradually in composition from pure A to pure B. This tapered region can be varied from 0% (true diblock) to 100% (gradient copolymer) of the polymer length, and this allows some control over the microphase separated domain spacing and other material properties. We perform molecular dynamics simulations of linearly tapered block copolymers with tapers of various lengths, initialized from fluids density functional theory predictions. To investigate the effect of sequence dispersity, we compare systems composed of identical polymers, whose taper has a fixed sequence that most closely approximates a linear gradient, with sequentially disperse polymers, whose sequences are created statistically to yield the appropriate ensemble average linear gradient. Especially at high segregation strength, we find clear differences in polymer conformations and microstructures between these systems. Importantly, the statistical polymers are able to find more favorable conformations given their sequence, for instance, a statistical polymer with a larger fraction of A than the median will tend towards the A lamellae. The conformations of the statistically different polymers can thus be less stretched, and these systems have higher overall density. Consequently, the lamellae formed by statistical polymers have smaller domain spacing with sharper interfaces.

  12. Polyelectrolyte multilayers of diblock copolymer micelles with temperature-responsive cores.

    PubMed

    Xu, Li; Zhu, Zhichen; Sukhishvili, Svetlana A

    2011-01-04

    We report on assembly and stimuli-response behavior of layer-by-layer (LbL) films of pH- and temperature-responsive cationic diblock copolymer micelles (BCMs) of poly(2-(dimethylamino)ethyl methacrylate)-block-poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) (PDMA-b-PNIPAM) and a linear polyanion polystyrene sulfonate (PSS). As a function of solution pH at temperatures above lower critical solution temperature (LCST) of PNIPAM, PDMA-b-PNIPAM micelles have been demonstrated earlier to exhibit an abrupt change in micellar aggregation number and hydrodynamic size between larger and smaller BCMs (LBCMs and SBCMs, respectively). Here, LBCMs or SBCMs were included within LbL films through self-assembly with a polyanion, and film pH and temperature responses were studied using ellipsometry and atomic force microscopy (AFM). Both types of micelle preserved their micellar morphology when adsorbed at the surface of oxidized silicon wafers coated with PSS-terminated precursor layer at a constant pH. Response of adsorbed BCMs to temperature and pH variations was strongly dependent on whether or not BCMs were coated with the PSS layer. While monolayers of LBCMs lost their original dry morphology in response to pH or temperature variations, depositing a PSS layer atop LBCMs inhibited such irreversible restructuring. As a result of wrapping around and strong binding of PSS chains with LBCM micelles, BCM/PSS assemblies preserved their original dry state morphology despite the application of pH and temperature triggers. However, the wet-state film response to pH and temperature stimuli was drastically different. Swelling of BCM/PSS multilayers was strongly affected by temperature but was almost independent of pH due to neutralization of BCM PDMA's coronal charge with PSS. Cycling the temperature below and above PNIPAM's LCST caused PNIPAM chains within BCM cores to swell or collapse, resulting in reversible swelling transitions in the entire BCM/PSS assemblies. Temperature-controlled switching between

  13. Furan-functionalized co-polymers for targeted drug delivery: characterization, self-assembly and drug encapsulation.

    PubMed

    Shi, Meng; Shoichet, Molly S

    2008-01-01

    We have previously reported furan-maleimide Diels-Alder chemistry as a new methodology to couple maleimide-modified antibodies on furan-functionalized polymeric carriers in the preparation of immuno-nanoparticles for targeted drug delivery. In this report, we focus on the characterization, self-assembly behavior and drug encapsulation of two types of furan-functionalized co-polymers: poly(2-methyl, 2-carboxytrimethylene carbonate-co-D,L-lactide)-furan (poly(TMCC-co-LA)-furan) and poly(2-methyl, 2-carboxytrimethylene carbonate-co-D,L-lactide)-graft-poly(ethylene glycol)-furan (poly(TMCC-co-LA)-g-PEG-furan). The co-polymers were synthesized by modifying the carboxylic acid groups on the poly(TMCC-co-LA) backbone by either furfurylamine or PEG-furan to generate either linear co-polymers of poly(TMCC-co-LA)-furan with furan pendant groups or graft co-polymers of poly(TMCC-co-LA)-g-PEG-furan with furan-terminated PEG grafts, respectively. Using a membrane dialysis method, both of the co-polymers were self-assembled into nanoparticles in aqueous environments driven by the hydrophobic association among polymer chains. The hydrophobic domains in the nanoparticles were confirmed by the incorporation of pyrene molecules and the critical aggregation concentrations were determined to be approximately 5 x 10(-5) mM for poly(TMCC-co-LA)-furan and 2 x 10(-4) mM for poly(TMCC-co-LA)-g-PEG-furan. By the addition of borate buffer in the organic solvent used to dissolve the co-polymers in the dialysis procedure, we were able to control the size of the nanoparticles: 54-169 nm for poly(TMCC-co-LA)-furan and 28-283 nm for poly(TMCC-co-LA)-g-PEG-furan. This unique feature can be explained by the ionization of carboxylic acid groups along the co-polymer backbone. A hydrophobic anticancer drug, doxorubicin (DOX), was encapsulated within the nanoparticles, with the larger size nanoparticles incorporating greater amounts of DOX. Combining the strategy of antibody-mediated targeting, these

  14. 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

  15. Occlusion of Sulfate-Based Diblock Copolymer Nanoparticles within Calcite: Effect of Varying the Surface Density of Anionic Stabilizer Chains

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Polymerization-induced self-assembly (PISA) offers a highly versatile and efficient route to a wide range of organic nanoparticles. In this article, we demonstrate for the first time that poly(ammonium 2-sulfatoethyl methacrylate)-poly(benzyl methacrylate) [PSEM–PBzMA] diblock copolymer nanoparticles can be prepared with either a high or low PSEM stabilizer surface density using either RAFT dispersion polymerization in a 2:1 v/v ethanol/water mixture or RAFT aqueous emulsion polymerization, respectively. We then use these model nanoparticles to gain new insight into a key topic in materials chemistry: the occlusion of organic additives into inorganic crystals. Substantial differences are observed for the extent of occlusion of these two types of anionic nanoparticles into calcite (CaCO3), which serves as a suitable model host crystal. A low PSEM stabilizer surface density leads to uniform nanoparticle occlusion within calcite at up to 7.5% w/w (16% v/v), while minimal occlusion occurs when using nanoparticles with a high PSEM stabilizer surface density. This counter-intuitive observation suggests that an optimum anionic surface density is required for efficient occlusion, which provides a hitherto unexpected design rule for the incorporation of nanoparticles within crystals. PMID:27509298

  16. 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

  17. Diblock copolymers of polyethylene glycol and a polymethacrylamide with side-chains containing twin ortho ester rings: synthesis, characterization, and evaluation as potential pH-responsive micelles.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Xiaojing; Luo, Shi; Tang, Rupei; Wang, Rui; Wang, Jun

    2015-03-01

    The diblock copolymer, PEG-b-PMEA, was synthesized by reversible-addition fragmentation chain transfer polymerization (RAFT). The PMEA block contained a polymethacrylamide backbone and twin ortho ester rings in the side-chains. At neutral pH, PEG-b-PMEA self-assembled to form stable micelles. At pH 5, the twin ortho ester rings were quickly hydrolyzed to completion in 12 h, and releasing nearly 70% of the encapsulated Nile Red dye. The PEG-b-PMEA micelles were completely nontoxic to cultured cells as determined by the MTT assay. Paclitaxel (PTX)-loaded micelles showed toxicity toward lung cancer cells comparable to that of the free PTX at equivalent doses. These results suggest that the PEG-b-PMEA micelles could be useful nano-carriers for pH-responsive delivery of poorly soluble anticancer drugs.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. Morphological Control of Anisotropic Self-Assemblies from Alternating Poly(p-dioxanone)-poly(ethylene glycol) Multiblock Copolymer Depending on the Combination Effect of Crystallization and Micellization.

    PubMed

    Wang, Mei-Jia; Wang, Hao; Chen, Si-Chong; Chen, Cheng; Liu, Ya

    2015-06-30

    A novel and facile method was developed for morphological controlling of self-assemblies prepared by crystallization induced self-assembly of crystalline-coil copolymer depending on the combination effect of crystallization and micellization. The morphological evolution of the self-assemblies of alternating poly(p-dioxanone)-block-poly(ethylene glycol) (PPDO-PEG) multiblock copolymer prepared by different solvent mixing methods in aqueous solution were investigated. "Chrysanthemum"-like and "star anise"-like self-assemblies were obtained at different rates of solvent mixing. The results suggested gradually change in solvent quality (slowly dropping water into DMF solution) leaded to a hierarchical micellization-crystallization process of core-forming PPDO blocks, and flake-like particles were formed at the initial stage of crystallization. Meanwhile, crystallization induced micellization process occurred when solvent quality changed drastically. Shuttle-like particles, which have much smaller size than those of flake-like particles, were formed at the initial stage of crystallization when quickly injecting water into DMF solution of the copolymer. Therefore, owing to the different changing rate of solvent quality, which may result in different combination effect of crystallization and micellization during self-assembly of the copolymer, PPDO-PEG self-assemblies with different hierarchical morphology in nano scale could be obtained.

  2. Kinetic pathways of sphere-to-cylinder transition in diblock copolymer melt under electric field.

    PubMed

    Ly, D Q; Pinna, M; Honda, T; Kawakatsu, T; Zvelindovsky, A V M

    2013-02-21

    Phase transition from body-centered-cubic spheres to cylinders in a diblock copolymer melt under an external electric field is investigated by means of real-space dynamical self-consistent field theory. Different phase transition kinetic pathways and different cylindrical domains arrangements of the final phase are observed depending on the strength and direction of the applied electric field. Various transient states have been identified depending on the electric field being applied along [111], [100], and [110] directions. The electric field should be above a certain threshold value in order the transition to occur. A "dynamic critical exponent" of the transition is found to be about 3/2, consistent with other order-order transitions in diblock copolymers under electric field.

  3. Synthesis and self-assembly behavior of a biodegradable and sustainable soybean oil-based copolymer nanomicelle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bao, Lixia; Bian, Longchun; Zhao, Mimi; Lei, Jingxin; Wang, Jiliang

    2014-08-01

    Herein, we report a novel amphiphilic biodegradable and sustainable soybean oil-based copolymer (SBC) prepared by grafting hydrophilic and biocompatible hydroxyethyl acrylate (HEA) polymeric segments onto the natural hydrophobic soybean oil chains. FTIR, H1-NMR, and GPC measurements have been used to investigate the molecular structure of the obtained SBC macromolecules. Self-assembly behaviors of the prepared SBC in aqueous solution have also been extensively evaluated by fluorescence spectroscopy and transmission electron microscopy. The prepared SBC nanocarrier with the size range of 40 to 80 nm has a potential application in the biomedical field.

  4. Self-assembling gradient copolymers of vinylimidazol and (acrylic)ibuprofen with anti-inflammatory and zinc chelating properties.

    PubMed

    Suárez, Patricia; Rojo, Luis; González-Gómez, Álvaro; Román, Julio San

    2013-09-01

    Novel gradient copolymers of hydrophilic 1-vinylimidazol and hydrophobic methacrylic derivative of ibuprofen prepared by free radical polymerization are described. The heterogeneous distribution of monomeric units along the polymeric chains leads to a gradient distribution of the hydrophobic and hydrophilic sequences responsible of nanoparticles formation through a self-assembling mechanism, capable of tune the water permeation due to the ionizable imidazole moieties and their gradient profile along the macromolecules, exhibiting pH and composition dependent effect in terms of diameter, zeta potential, acid-base buffering, ibuprofen release and chelating capacities, responsible of matrix metalloproteinase dysfunction showing anti-inflammatory activity in a nitric oxide inhibition assay.

  5. Molecular dynamics study on microstructures of diblock copolymer melts with soft potential and potential recovery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ryu, Ji Ho; Wee, Han Sol; Lee, Won Bo

    2016-09-01

    Various microstructures are obtained through the self-assembly of block copolymers on the basis of the compositional fractions and repulsive interactions among different types of beads. The inhomogeneity of block copolymers can be studied by molecular dynamics. However, preparing initial configurations of various self-assembled structures directly by molecular dynamics requires extensive computational time because of topological constraints. Furthermore, manual preparation often becomes a complicated and time-consuming procedure even for the simplest structures, such as a lamellar phase, not to mention three-dimensional bicontinuous cubic phases such as a gyroid phase. In this paper, this difficulty is overcome by using a soft potential, which allows the system to reach a self-assembled state quickly (within 3 τd ). Once a self-assembled microstructure is obtained, the normal potential is restored and equilibration steps are performed to enable the calculation of various properties of the microstructures. Various equilibrated phase structures—including S (spherical), H (hexagonal), G (gyroid), and L (lamellar) phases—are obtained by this approach. To verify our method, static and dynamic properties of the lamellar phase are examined and compared with previous results.

  6. Self-assembly in block polyelectrolytes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Shuang; Vishnyakov, Aleksey; Neimark, Alexander V.

    2011-02-01

    The self-consistent field theory (SCFT) complemented with the Poisson-Boltzmann equation is employed to explore self-assembly of polyelectrolyte copolymers composed of charged blocks A and neutral blocks B. We have extended SCFT to dissociating triblock copolymers and demonstrated our approach on three characteristic examples: (1) diblock copolymer (AB) melt, (2) symmetric triblock copolymer (ABA) melt, (3) triblock copolymer (ABA) solution with added electrolyte. For copolymer melts, we varied the composition (that is, the total fraction of A-segments in the system) and the charge density on A blocks and calculated the phase diagram that contains ordered mesophases of lamellar, gyroid, hexagonal, and bcc symmetries, as well as the uniform disordered phase. The phase diagram of charged block copolymer melts in the charge density - system composition coordinates is similar to the classical phase diagram of neutral block copolymer melts, where the composition and the Flory mismatch interaction parameter χ _{AB} are used as variables. We found that the transitions between the polyelectrolyte mesophases with the increase of charge density occur in the same sequence, from lamellar to gyroid to hexagonal to bcc to disordered morphologies, as the mesophase transitions for neutral diblocks with the decrease of χ _{AB}. In a certain range of compositions, the phase diagram for charged triblock copolymers exhibits unexpected features, allowing for transitions from hexagonal to gyroid to lamellar mesophases as the charge density increases. Triblock polyelectrolyte solutions were studied by varying the charge density and solvent concentration at a fixed copolymer composition. Transitions from lamellar to gyroid and gyroid to hexagonal morphologies were observed at lower polymer concentrations than the respective transitions in the similar neutral copolymer, indicating a substantial influence of the charge density on phase behavior.

  7. Strain rate effects on symmetric diblock copolymer liquid bridges: order-induced stability of polymer fibres.

    PubMed

    Peters, Robert D; Dalnoki-Veress, Kari

    2014-10-01

    Optical microscopy is used to study the effect of lamellar order on the evolution of polymer-melt bridges. Measurements are performed on symmetric diblock copolymers and linear homopolymers in the melt state. Diblock copolymer bridges measured in the disordered phase are shown to exhibit the same strain rate response as their homopolymer counterparts: shear thinning at low strain rates and shear thickening at high strain rates. However, when measured in the ordered phase, copolymer-melt bridges demonstrate an increased effective viscosity due to the lamellar order and a shear thinning response over the entire range of strain rates probed. The increased viscosity demonstrates an enhanced stability in lamellae forming diblock liquid bridges, presumed to be caused by the isotropic orientational order of lamellar domains that provide energy barriers to flow within the bridge. The shear thinning can be understood as an alignment of lamellae along the axis of the bridge due to flow, facilitating unimpeded diffusion of polymer out of the liquid bridge along lamellar boundaries.

  8. John H. Dillon Medal: Tapered Block Copolymers: Tuning Self-Assembly and Properties by Manipulating Monomer Segment Distributions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Epps, Thomas

    The self-assembly of block copolymers (BCPs) presents unique opportunities to design materials with attractive chemical and mechanical properties based on the ability of BCPs to form periodic structures with nanoscale domain spacings. One area of recent progress in our group focuses on the behavior of tapered BCPs in which the segment distribution at the interface between blocks is synthetically varied to tune morphology, domain density profiles, thermal transitions as well as mechanical and transport properties. Two application targets for these materials are lithium-ion conducting membranes for batteries and nanostructured thin films for nanotemplates and barrier membranes. In the first target area, we found that the taper volume fraction and composition allow us to manipulate the self-assembly of salt-doped BCPs in a well-defined manner that permits optimization of morphology and ion-content. Additionally, we found that the tapered interfaces influence the glass-transition behavior of the ion-conducting block leading to significant changes in lithium-ion transport (ion conductivity). In the second target area, we found the taper content alters the rate of self-assembly as well as the rate of island/hole formation (and ultimate island/hole size) upon thermal annealing. Additionally, using reflectivity techniques, we probed the domain density profiles as a function of taper composition and linked these profiles to changes in domain spacing and glass transition temperature. Overall, these studies show the versatility of tapering to provide a unique handle for simultaneously optimizing multiple materials properties.

  9. Understanding self-assembly of charged-neutral block copolymer (BCP) and surfactant complexes using molecular dynamics (MD) simulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goswami, Monojoy; Sumpter, Bobby; Kilbey, Michael

    Here we report the formation of phase separated BCP-surfactant complexes resulting from the electrostatic self-assembly of charge-neutral block copolymers with oppositely charged surfactants. Complexation behaviors of oppositely charged polyelectrolytes has gained considerable attention in the field of soft condensed matter physics due to their potential application as functional nanomaterials for batteries, wastewater treatment and drug delivery systems. Numerous experiments have examined the self-assembled structures resulting from complexation of charge-neutral BCP and surfactants, however, there is a lack of comprehensive understanding at the fundamental level. To help bridge this gap, we use, MD simulations to study self-assembly and dynamics of the BCP-surfactant complex at the molecular level. Our results show an overcharging effect in BCPs with hydrophobic neutral blocks and a formation of core-shell colloidal structure. Hydrophilic neutral blocks, on the other hand, show stable, hairy colloidal structures with neutral blocks forming a loosely-bound, fuzzy outer layer. Our results qualitatively agree with previous SANS and SAXS experiments. This work was supported by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), Office of Basic Energy Sciences, Materials Science and Engineering Division.

  10. Self-assembly of amphiphilic block copolymer-tethered nanoparticles: a new approach to nanoscale design of functional materials.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yi; Liu, Yijing; Yin, Jun-Jie; Nie, Zhihong

    2015-04-01

    Colloidal molecules constructed from polymers and nanoparticles (NPs) have recently emerged as a novel class of building blocks for assembling functional hybrid materials. Particularly, self-assembly of amphiphilic block copolymer (BCP)-tethered NPs (BNPs) has shown great promise in the nanoscale design of functional hybrid materials. On the one hand, structurally the BNPs can be considered as molecular equivalents that are capable of self-assembly at multiple hierarchical levels. On the other hand, the assembly of BNPs shows significant differences from molecular assembly due to their large dimension, complex geometry, and multi-scale interactions involved in the assembly process. The manipulation of BCPs localized near the surface of the NPs offers an effective tool for engineering the interactions between NPs and hence the complexity of NP assembly. In this Feature Article, recent progresses on the self-assembly of BNPs into functional materials are summarized. First, major strategies for assembling amphiphilic BNPs are highlighted. Secondly, the application of hybrid nanostructures (e.g., vesicles) assembled from BNPs in the field of biomedical imaging and delivery is discussed. Finally, current challenges and perspectives at this frontier are outlined.

  11. Hierarchical patterns of three-dimensional block-copolymer films formed by electrohydrodynamic jet printing and self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Onses, M. Serdar; Song, Chiho; Williamson, Lance; Sutanto, Erick; Ferreira, Placid M.; Alleyne, Andrew G.; Nealey, Paul F.; Ahn, Heejoon; Rogers, John A.

    2013-09-01

    Self-assembly of block-copolymers provides a route to the fabrication of small (size, <50 nm) and dense (pitch, <100 nm) features with an accuracy that approaches even the demanding specifications for nanomanufacturing set by the semiconductor industry. A key requirement for practical applications, however, is a rapid, high-resolution method for patterning block-copolymers with different molecular weights and compositions across a wafer surface, with complex geometries and diverse feature sizes. Here we demonstrate that an ultrahigh-resolution jet printing technique that exploits electrohydrodynamic effects can pattern large areas with block-copolymers based on poly(styrene-block-methyl methacrylate) with various molecular weights and compositions. The printed geometries have diameters and linewidths in the sub-500 nm range, line edge roughness as small as ~45 nm, and thickness uniformity and repeatability that can approach molecular length scales (~2 nm). Upon thermal annealing on bare, or chemically or topographically structured substrates, such printed patterns yield nanodomains of block-copolymers with well-defined sizes, periodicities and morphologies, in overall layouts that span dimensions from the scale of nanometres (with sizes continuously tunable between 13 nm and 20 nm) to centimetres. As well as its engineering relevance, this methodology enables systematic studies of unusual behaviours of block-copolymers in geometrically confined films.

  12. Hierarchical patterns of three-dimensional block-copolymer films formed by electrohydrodynamic jet printing and self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Onses, M Serdar; Song, Chiho; Williamson, Lance; Sutanto, Erick; Ferreira, Placid M; Alleyne, Andrew G; Nealey, Paul F; Ahn, Heejoon; Rogers, John A

    2013-09-01

    Self-assembly of block-copolymers provides a route to the fabrication of small (size, <50 nm) and dense (pitch, <100 nm) features with an accuracy that approaches even the demanding specifications for nanomanufacturing set by the semiconductor industry. A key requirement for practical applications, however, is a rapid, high-resolution method for patterning block-copolymers with different molecular weights and compositions across a wafer surface, with complex geometries and diverse feature sizes. Here we demonstrate that an ultrahigh-resolution jet printing technique that exploits electrohydrodynamic effects can pattern large areas with block-copolymers based on poly(styrene-block-methyl methacrylate) with various molecular weights and compositions. The printed geometries have diameters and linewidths in the sub-500 nm range, line edge roughness as small as ∼45 nm, and thickness uniformity and repeatability that can approach molecular length scales (∼2 nm). Upon thermal annealing on bare, or chemically or topographically structured substrates, such printed patterns yield nanodomains of block-copolymers with well-defined sizes, periodicities and morphologies, in overall layouts that span dimensions from the scale of nanometres (with sizes continuously tunable between 13 nm and 20 nm) to centimetres. As well as its engineering relevance, this methodology enables systematic studies of unusual behaviours of block-copolymers in geometrically confined films.

  13. Directed self-assembly of poly(styrene)-block-poly(acrylic acid) copolymers for sub-20nm pitch patterning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheng, Jing; Lawson, Richard A.; Yeh, Wei-Ming; Jarnagin, Nathan D.; Peters, Andrew; Tolbert, Laren M.; Henderson, Clifford L.

    2012-03-01

    Directed self-assembly (DSA) of block copolymers is a promising technology for extending the patterning capability of current lithographic exposure tools. For example, production of sub-40 nm pitch features using 193nm exposure technologies is conceivably possible using DSA methods without relying on time consuming, challenging, and expensive multiple patterning schemes. Significant recent work has focused on demonstration of the ability to produce large areas of regular grating structures with low numbers of defects using self-assembly of poly(styrene)-b-poly(methyl methacrylate) copolymers (PS-b-PMMA). While these recent results are promising and have shown the ability to print pitches approaching 20 nm using DSA, the ability to advance to even smaller pitches will be dependent upon the ability to develop new block copolymers with higher χ values and the associated alignment and block removal processes required to achieve successful DSA with these new materials. This paper reports on work focused on identifying higher χ block copolymers and their associated DSA processes for sub-20 nm pitch patterning. In this work, DSA using polystyrene-b-polyacid materials has been explored. Specifically, it is shown that poly(styrene)-b-poly(acrylic acid) copolymers (PS-b-PAA) is one promising material for achieving substantially smaller pitch patterns than those possible with PS-b-PMMA while still utilizing simple hydrocarbon polymers. In fact, it is anticipated that much of the learning that has been done with the PS-b-PMMA system, such as development of highly selective plasma etch block removal procedures, can be directly leveraged or transferred to the PS-b-PAA system. Acetone vapor annealing of PS-b-PAA (Mw=16,000 g/mol with 50:50 mole ratio of PS:PAA) and its self-assembly into a lamellar morphology is demonstrated to generate a pattern pitch size (L0) of 21 nm. The χ value for PS-b-PAA was estimated from fingerprint pattern pitch data to be approximately 0.18 which

  14. Striped, Ellipsoidal Particles by Controlled Assembly of Diblock Copolymers

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-04-17

    chloroform solutions were then mixed with deionized water containing 0.1 wt % amphiphilic cationic surfactant (CTAB), emulsified by ultrasonication, and...This block copolymer solution was emulsified by ultrasonication in 15 mL of deionized water containing CTAB (Sigma-Aldrich, 0.1 wt %) as a

  15. Self-assembly of block copolymers on topographically patterned polymeric substrates

    SciTech Connect

    Russell, Thomas P.; Park, Soojin; Lee, Dong Hyun; Xu, Ting

    2016-05-10

    Highly-ordered block copolymer films are prepared by a method that includes forming a polymeric replica of a topographically patterned crystalline surface, forming a block copolymer film on the topographically patterned surface of the polymeric replica, and annealing the block copolymer film. The resulting structures can be used in a variety of different applications, including the fabrication of high density data storage media. The ability to use flexible polymers to form the polymeric replica facilitates industrial-scale processes utilizing the highly-ordered block copolymer films.

  16. Block copolymer micelles as nanoreactors for self-assembled morphologies of gold nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Khullar, Poonam; Singh, Vijender; Mahal, Aabroo; Kumar, Harsh; Kaur, Gurinder; Bakshi, Mandeep Singh

    2013-03-14

    Self-assembled gold (Au) nanoparticles (NPs) were synthesized in micelle surface cavities of a L121 block polymer in the presence of zwitterionic (viz. DPS, TPS, and HPS) and sugar surfactants (OG and DDM) in aqueous phase at 70 °C by using the surface cavities of L121 as reducing sites for converting Au(III) into Au(0). All reactions were monitored simultaneously by UV-visible spectroscopy to determine the growth kinetics in gold nucleating centers on the basis of surface plasmon resonance that also helped in tracing the structure micelle transitions over a wide temperature range of 10-70 °C. The surfactant/L121 mole ratio was changed systematically from 0.5 to 2.5 by keeping L121 and HAuCl4 concentrations constant at 10 and 0.25 mM, respectively, to determine the shape and size of the micelles and their relation to the self-assembled behavior of Au NPs. TEM studies were used to have a direct insight into the morphology of micelle templates and their shape and size for self-assembled NPs. L121 along with DPS (C12 carbon chain) produced well-defined micelles loaded with tiny NPs of 3-6 nm in the L121-rich region of the mixture, while large flower-like compound micelles with a clear core-shell morphology were produced in the DPS-rich region. TPS and HPS (C14 and C16 hydrocarbon chains, respectively) with stronger hydrophobicity than DPS also produced almost similar micelles loaded with tiny NPs in the L121-rich region, but they disappear in the surfactant-rich region. Replacement of zwitterionic with ionic surfactants did not yield micelle templates for self-assembled NPs. Results conclude that well-defined micelles of L121 are the fine templates for self-assembled NPs that can only be achieved in the presence of a neutral surfactant with low concentration and low hydrophobicity.

  17. Effect of chemical oxidation on the self-assembly of organometallic block copolymers.

    PubMed

    Eitouni, Hany B; Balsara, Nitash P

    2004-06-23

    The thermodynamic interactions in poly(styrene-block-ferrocenyldimethylsilane) and poly(isoprene-block-ferrocenyldimethylsilane) copolymers were systematically tuned by oxidation of the ferrocene moieties with silver nitrate. Small-angle X-ray scattering experiments show that oxidizing 8% of the ferrocene moieties lowers the order-disorder transition temperature of the copolymers by as much as 40 degrees C.

  18. Directed self-assembly of high-chi block copolymer for nano fabrication of bit patterned media via solvent annealing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xiong, Shisheng; Chapuis, Yves-Andre; Wan, Lei; Gao, He; Li, Xiao; Ruiz, Ricardo; Nealey, Paul F.

    2016-10-01

    We report the formation of nanoimprint master templates that can be used for the fabrication of bit patterned media (BPM). The template was formed by directed self-assembly, with solvent annealing, of a symmetric ABA triblock copolymer to form perpendicularly oriented lamellae on chemical patterns. We used a high-χ block copolymer, poly(2-vinyl pyridine)-block-polystyrene-block-poly(2-vinyl pyridine) to achieve smaller feature sizes than are possible with polystyrene-block-poly(methyl methacrylate). The work shows that triblock copolymers can provide a large processing window in terms of pitch commensurability. Using block-selective infiltration (atomic layer deposition with sequential long soaking/purge cycles), an alumina composite with high etch resistance was specifically incorporated into the polar and hydrophilic P2VP domains. Subsequently, the surface pattern was successfully transferred into underlying Si substrates by etching with a fluorine-containing plasma to create a nanoimprint master. The line/space pattern of the nanoimprint master met the BPM fabrication requirement of defectivity <10-3. For demonstration purposes, the nanoimprint master was used to imprint a replica pattern of photoresist on a quartz wafer.

  19. Effects of block copolymer self-assembly on optical anisotropy in azobenzene-containing PS-b-PMMA films.

    PubMed

    Orofino, A B; Camezzana, M F; Galante, M J; Oyanguren, P A; Zucchi, I A

    2012-03-23

    Polystyrene-b-polymethylmethacrylate (PS-b-PMMA) was selected as the host for 4-(4-nitrophenylazo)aniline (Disperse Orange 3, DO3) based on a previous study of DO3/PMMA and DO3/PS binary blends. Selective location of DO3 into the PMMA block of the copolymer was expected during self-assembly of the block copolymer since a preferential interaction of DO3 with PMMA has been demonstrated. However, surface segregation of DO3 was found during the thermal annealing used to nanostructure the copolymer. To avoid this, a thermoplastic polymer (Azo-TP) was synthesized from the bulk reaction of DO3 and diglycidyl ether of bisphenol A (DGEBA). The choice of DGEBA as a co-reactant was an attempt to encourage the selective location of azo groups in the PMMA phase of PS-b-PMMA. An inspection of solutions of Azo-TP in PS and PMMA, corroborates the preferential affinity of Azo-TP for PMMA. The Azo-TP could be satisfactorily dissolved in PS-b-PMMA. We have investigated the growth and decay processes of the optically induced birefringence in films of PS-b-PMMA containing 12 wt% Azo-TP. The resulting materials showed a good photoinduced time response, high maximum birefringence and an elevated fraction of remnant anisotropy.

  20. Shielding of quantum dots using diblock copolymers: implementing copper catalyzed click chemistry to fluorescent quantum dots

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Merkl, Jan-Philip; Ostermann, Johannes; Schmidtke, Christian; Kloust, Hauke; Eggers, Robin; Feld, Artur; Wolter, Christopher; Kreuziger, Anna-Marlena; Flessau, Sandra; Mattoussi, Hedi; Weller, Horst

    2014-03-01

    We describe the design and optimization of an amphiphilic diblock copolymer and its use to provide surface functionalization of colloidal semiconductor nanoparticles (quantum dots, QDs). This polymer coating promotes hydrophilicity of the nanocrystals while providing numerous functional groups ideally suited for biofunctionalization of the QDs using copper-catalyzed azide alkyne Husigen 1,3-cyloaddition (i.e., cupper catalyzed "click" reaction). Copper ions are known to quench the fluorescence of QDs in solution. Thus effective shielding of the nanocrystal surface is essential to apply copper-catalyzed reactions to luminescent QDs without drastically quenching their emission. We have applied a strategy based on micellar encapsulation within poly(isoprene-block- ethylene oxide) diblock-copolymers (PI-b-PEO), where three critical factors promote and control the effectiveness of the shielding of copper ion penetration: 1) The excess of PI-b-PEO, 2) the size of PI-b-PEO and 3) insertion of an additional PS-shell grown via seeded emulsion polymerization (EP) reaction. Due to the amphiphilic character of the block-copolymer, this approach provides a shielding layer surrounding the particles, preventing metal ions from reaching the QD surfaces and maintaining high photoluminescence. The effective shielding allowed the use of copper-catalyzed azide-alkyne 1,3-cycloaddition (CuAAC) to hydrophilic and highly fluorescent QDs, opening up great possibilities for the bio functionalization of QDs.

  1. Directed self-assembly of solvent-vapor-induced non-bulk block copolymer morphologies on nanopatterned substrates.

    PubMed

    Wan, Lei; Ji, Shengxiang; Liu, Chi-Chun; Craig, Gordon S W; Nealey, Paul F

    2016-03-21

    We report a study on directed self-assembly (DSA) with solvent annealing to induce the formation of non-bulk block copolymer microdomains on chemical patterns. Ultrathin films of symmetric polystyrene-block-poly(methyl methacrylate) (PS-b-PMMA) display morphologies of PMMA dots, stripes, and PS hexagons with increasing exposure time to acetone vapor, a PMMA-selective solvent. All three nanostructures form long-range-ordered and registered arrays on striped chemical patterns with periods (LS) commensurate to the solvated PS-b-PMMA microdomain period (L0,s). Solvent annealing is shown to facilitate DSA on non-regular chemical patterns, on which the local periods are incommensurate to L0,s. DSA with feature density multiplication, via solvent annealing, is also demonstrated.

  2. Supramolecular Organometallic Polymer Chemistry: Self-Assembly of a Novel Poly(ferrocene)-b-polysiloxane-b-poly(ferrocene) Triblock Copolymer in Solution.

    PubMed

    Resendes; Massey; Dorn; Power; Winnik; Manners

    1999-09-01

    Micelles with unprecedented flowerlike arrangements of the poly(ferrocene) cores (shown in the TEM image) are among the supramolecular architectures generated in the self-assembly of a novel organometallic triblock copolymer from silicon-bridged [1]ferrocenophane monomers and [Me(2)SiO](3) in hexane, a solvent selective for the central polysiloxane block.

  3. Polymerization Induced Self-Assembly of Alginate Based Amphiphilic Graft Copolymers Synthesized by Single Electron Transfer Living Radical Polymerization.

    PubMed

    Kapishon, Vitaliy; Whitney, Ralph A; Champagne, Pascale; Cunningham, Michael F; Neufeld, Ronald J

    2015-07-13

    Alginate-based amphiphilic graft copolymers were synthesized by single electron transfer living radical polymerization (SET-LRP), forming stable micelles during polymerization induced self-assembly (PISA). First, alginate macroinitiator was prepared by partial depolymerization of native alginate, solubility modification and attachment of initiator. Depolymerized low molecular weight alginate (∼12 000 g/mol) was modified with tetrabutylammonium, enabling miscibility in anhydrous organic solvents, followed by initiator attachment via esterification yielding a macroinitiator with a degree of substitution of 0.02, or 1-2 initiator groups per alginate chain. Then, methyl methacrylate was polymerized from the alginate macroinitiator in mixtures of water and methanol, forming poly(methyl methacrylate) grafts, prior to self-assembly, of ∼75 000 g/mol and polydispersity of 1.2. PISA of the amphiphilic graft-copolymer resulted in the formation of micelles with diameters of 50-300 nm characterized by light scattering and electron microscopy. As the first reported case of LRP from alginate, this work introduces a synthetic route to a preparation of alginate-based hybrid polymers with a precise macromolecular architecture and desired functionalities. The intended application is the preparation of micelles for drug delivery; however, LRP from alginate can also be applied in the field of biomaterials to the improvement of alginate-based hydrogel systems such as nano- and microhydrogel particles, islet encapsulation materials, hydrogel implants, and topical applications. Such modified alginates can also improve the function and application of native alginates in food and agricultural applications.

  4. Highly stable chiral (A)6-B supramolecular copolymers: a multivalency-based self-assembly process.

    PubMed

    Chen, Shi-Gui; Yu, Yue; Zhao, Xin; Ma, Yuguo; Jiang, Xi-Kui; Li, Zhan-Ting

    2011-07-27

    A novel type of chiral layered supramolecular copolymer with high molecular weight has been assembled from a hydrogen bonded C(6)-symmetric zinc porphyrin hexamer and chiral C(3)-symmetric pyridine hexadentate linkers driven by multivalent zinc porphyrin-pyridine coordination. UV-vis, circular dichroism, and static light scattering experiments revealed that the formation of the layered supramolecular copolymers is at first dynamically controlled and then becomes thermodynamically controlled.

  5. Controlled Solution Self-Assembly of a Midblock-Sulfonated Pentablock Copolymer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mineart, Kenneth; Gradzielski, Michael; Spontak, Richard

    The solution self-assembly of midblock-sulfonated block ionomers (SBIs) has been shown to translate to their bulk, solution-cast morphology, which can further impact their function in applications such as desalination, fuel cell, and photovoltaic membranes. Previous studies have identified that increasing the degree of sulfonation (DOS) in SBIs dispersed in a nonpolar solvent results in the growth of micellar aggregates due to increased interfacial energy. However, these works have not attempted to control the assembly at a given DOS by tuning the solvent environment. The current study probes the tunability of SBI aggregation behavior using a nonpolar/polar solvent mixture varying in composition. A combination of light scattering (SLS and DLS) and small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) independently confirm that SBI micelles grow larger, both in core and corona, as the solvent environment becomes more nonpolar. The increases in both core and corona size will be explained using polymer thermodynamics and further supported through presentation of small angle neutron scattering (SANS) data. In addition, these results will be compared with SBI self-assembly in a single solvent, which is expected to distribute between the micelle cores and bulk solvent environment. We would like to acknowledge funding from NSF IRES (App #1065466) and MANN+HUMMEL GmbH.

  6. Structural, Viscoelastic, and Electrochemical Characteristics of Self-Assembled Amphiphilic Comblike Copolymers in Aqueous Solutions.

    PubMed

    Talantikite, Malika; Aoudia, Kahina; Benyahia, Lazhar; Chaal, Lila; Chassenieux, Christophe; Deslouis, Claude; Gaillard, Cédric; Saidani, Boualem

    2017-02-02

    Self-assembly in aqueous solutions of an amphiphilic comblike polyelectrolyte (80C12) that consists of a polystyrene (PS) backbone onto which quaternary ammonium pendant moieties have been grafted has been investigated by light scattering and cryo-transmission electron microscopy measurements in the presence of KCl and methylviologen dication (MV(2+)) under conditions mimicking those for electrochemical measurements. Polymer chains self-assemble within branched cylindrical micelles that display viscoelastic properties, characterized by a relaxation time of 4 s. To tune this time, 80C12 was mixed with a polyoxyethylene nonionic surfactant (Brij C12E10). Relatively increasing the amount of the latter leads to a decrease in the relaxation time of the 80C12 solution. Correlatively, electrochemical experiments with a rotating disk electrode show a transition of the mass transport rate, which deviates from the classical Newtonian behavior in the same velocity domain. This result generalizes what has been already observed with solutions of linear polymers of high molecular weight and wormlike micelles based on surfactants subjected to elongational deformations. Moreover, the critical times derived from rheological and electrochemical experiments display the same trend.

  7. 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.

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

    PubMed

    Pierce, Flint; Tsige, Mesfin; Perahia, Dvora; Grest, Gary S

    2008-12-18

    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.

  9. Ordered phases of diblock copolymers in selective solvent.

    PubMed

    Grason, Gregory M

    2007-03-21

    The authors propose a mean-field model to explore the equilibrium coupling between micelle aggregation and lattice choice in neutral copolymer and selective solvent mixtures. They find both thermotropic and lyotropic transitions from face-centered cubic to body-centered cubic ordered phases of spherical micelles, in agreement with experimental observations of these systems over a broad range of conditions. The stability of the nonclosed packed phase can be attributed to two physical mechanisms: the large entropy of lattice phonons near crystal melting and the preference of the intermicelle repulsions for the body-centered cubic structure when the lattice becomes sufficiently dense at higher solution concentrations. Both mechanisms are controlled by the decrease of micelle aggregation and subsequent increase of lattice density as solvent selectivity is reduced. These results shed new light on the relationship between micelle structure--"crewcut" or "hairy"--and long-range order in micelle solutions.

  10. Synthesis and Melt Self-Assembly of PS-PMMA-PLA Triblock Bottlebrush Copolymers

    SciTech Connect

    Bolton, Justin; Rzayev, Javid

    2014-07-03

    Polystyrene–poly(methyl methacrylate)–polylactide (PS–PMMA–PLA) triblock bottlebrush copolymer with nearly symmetric volume fractions was synthesized by grafting from a symmetrical triblock backbone and the resulting melt was characterized by scanning electron microscopy and small-angle X-ray scattering. The copolymer backbone was prepared by sequential reversible addition–fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization of solketal methacrylate (SM), 2-(bromoisobutyryl)ethyl methacrylate (BIEM), and 5-(trimethylsilyl)-4-pentyn-1-ol methacrylate (TPYM). PMMA branches were grafted by atom transfer radical polymerization from the poly(BIEM) segment, PS branches were grafted by RAFT polymerization from the poly(TPYM) block after installment of the RAFT agents, while PLA side chains were grafted from the deprotected poly(SM) block. The resulting copolymer was found to exhibit a lamellae morphology with a domain spacing of 79 nm. Differential scanning calorimetry analysis indicated that PMMA was preferentially mixing with PS while phase separating from PLA domains.

  11. Ordered porous mesostructured materials from nanoparticle-block copolymer self-assembly

    SciTech Connect

    Warren, Scott; Wiesner, Ulrich; DiSalvo, Jr., Francis J

    2013-10-29

    The invention provides mesostructured materials and methods of preparing mesostructured materials including metal-rich mesostructured nanoparticle-block copolymer hybrids, porous metal-nonmetal nanocomposite mesostructures, and ordered metal mesostructures with uniform pores. The nanoparticles can be metal, metal alloy, metal mixture, intermetallic, metal-carbon, metal-ceramic, semiconductor-carbon, semiconductor-ceramic, insulator-carbon or insulator-ceramic nanoparticles, or combinations thereof. A block copolymer/ligand-stabilized nanoparticle solution is cast, resulting in the formation of a metal-rich (or semiconductor-rich or insulator-rich) mesostructured nanoparticle-block copolymer hybrid. The hybrid is heated to an elevated temperature, resulting in the formation of an ordered porous nanocomposite mesostructure. A nonmetal component (e.g., carbon or ceramic) is then removed to produce an ordered mesostructure with ordered and large uniform pores.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. Effect of diblock copolymer properties on the photophysical properties of dendrimer silicon phthalocyanine nanoconjugates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Kuizhi; Pan, Sujuan; Zhuang, Xuemei; Lv, Hafei; Que, Shoulin; Xie, Shusen; Yang, Hongqin; Peng, Yiru

    2016-07-01

    1-2 generation poly(benzyl aryl ether) dendrimer silicon phthalocyanines with axially disubstituted cyano terminal functionalities (G n -DSiPc(CN)4 n , (G n = n-generation dendrimer, n = 1-2)) were synthesized. Their structures were characterized by elemental analysis, IR, 1H NMR, and ESI-MS. Polymeric nanoparticles (G n -DSiPc(CN)4 n /m) were formed through encapsulating G n -DSiPc(CN)4 n into three monomethoxyl poly(ethylene glycol)-poly(ɛ-caprolactone) diblock copolymers (MPEG-PCL) with different hydrophilic/hydrophobic proportion, respectively. The effect of dendritic generation and the hydrophilic/hydrophobic proportion of diblock copolymers on the UV/Vis and fluorescence spectra of G n -DSiPc(CN)4 n and G n -DSiPc(CN)4 n /m were studied. The photophysical properties of polymeric nanoparticles exhibited dendritic generation and hydrophilic/hydrophobic proportion dependence. The fluorescence intensities and lifetimes of G n -DSiPc(CN)4 n /m were lower than the corresponding free dendrimer phthalocyanines. G n -DSiPc(CN)4 n encapsulated into MPEG-PCL with hydrophilic/hydrophobic molecular weight ratio 2000:4000 exhibited excellent photophysical property. The mean diameter of MPEG2000-PCL2000 micelles was about 70 nm, which decreased when loaded with G n -DSiPc(CN)4 n .

  16. Real-space evidence of the equilibrium ordered bicontinuous double diamond structure of a diblock copolymer.

    PubMed

    Chu, C Y; Jiang, X; Jinnai, H; Pei, R Y; Lin, W F; Tsai, J C; Chen, H L

    2015-03-14

    The ordered bicontinuous double diamond (OBDD) structure has long been believed to be an unstable ordered network nanostructure, which is relative to the ordered bicontinuous double gyroid (OBDG) structure for diblock copolymers. Using electron tomography, we present the first real-space observation of the thermodynamically stable OBDD structure in a diblock copolymer composed of a stereoregular block, syndiotactic polypropylene-block-polystyrene (sPP-b-PS), in which the sPP tetrapods are interconnected via a bicontinuous network with Pn3̄m symmetry. The OBDD structure underwent a thermally reversible order-order transition (OOT) to OBDG upon heating, and the transition was accompanied with a slight reduction of domain spacing, as demonstrated both experimentally and theoretically. The thermodynamic stability of the OBDD structure was attributed to the ability of the configurationally regular sPP block to form helical segments, even above its melting point, as the reduction of internal energy associated with the helix formation may effectively compensate the greater packing frustration in OBDD relative to that in the tripods of OBDG.

  17. Quantifying Fluctuation Effects on the Order-Disorder Transition of Symmetric Diblock Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zong, Jing; Wang

    2012-02-01

    How fluctuations change the order-disorder transition (ODT) of symmetric diblock copolymers is a classic yet unsolved problem in polymer physics.ootnotetextL. Leibler, Macromolecules, 13, 1602 (1980); G. H. Fredrickson and E. Helfand, J. Chem. Phys., 87, 697 (1987). Here we unambiguously quantify the fluctuation effects by direct comparisons between fast off-lattice Monte Carlo (FOMC) simulationsootnotetextQ. Wang and Y. Yin, J. Chem. Phys., 130, 104903 (2009). and mean-field theory using exactly the same model system (Hamiltonian), thus without any parameter-fitting. The symmetric diblock copolymers are modeled as discrete Gaussian chains with soft, finite-range repulsions as commonly used in dissipative-particle dynamics simulations. The effects of chain discretization and finite-range interactions on ODT are properly accounted for in our mean-field theory.ootnotetextQ. Wang, J. Chem. Phys., 129, 054904 (2008); 131, 234903 (2009). Our FOMC simulations are performed in a canonical ensemble with variable box lengths to eliminate the adverse effects of fixed box sizes on ODT.ootnotetextQ. Wang et al., J. Chem. Phys., 112, 450 (2000). Furthermore, with a new order parameter for the lamellar phase, we use replica exchange and multiple histogram reweighting to accurately locate ODT in our simulations.

  18. Compatibilizing Effect of a Diblock Copolymer of Isotactic Polystyrene and Isotactic Polypropylene in Blends of the Corresponding Homopolymers.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1984-08-10

    Ital.y 1I. KEY WORDS (Continue on revere a .it nece.say and Identitp by block na b") semicrystalline diblock copolymer dynamic mechanical properties...differences in dynamic mechanical behavior are also seen when the copolymer and the homopolymer blend are compared. Figure 7 shows the results of free...in modulus shown by this sample in Figure 7. -7- Taken all together, the comparative information obtained fron the various microscopy and dynamic

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. Self-assembly in poly(dimethylsiloxane)-poly(ethylene oxide) block copolymer template directed synthesis of Linde type A zeolite.

    PubMed

    Bonaccorsi, Lucio; Calandra, Pietro; Kiselev, Mikhail A; Amenitsch, Heinz; Proverbio, Edoardo; Lombardo, Domenico

    2013-06-11

    We describe the hydrothermal synthesis of zeolite Linde type A (LTA) submicrometer particles using a water-soluble amphiphilic block copolymer of poly(dimethylsiloxane)-b-poly(ethylene oxide) as a template. The formation and growth of the intermediate aggregates in the presence of the diblock copolymer have been monitored by small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) above the critical micellar concentration at a constant temperature of 45 °C. The early stage of the growth process was characterized by the incorporation of the zeolite LTA components into the surface of the block copolymer micellar aggregates with the formation of primary units of 4.8 nm with a core-shell morphology. During this period, restricted to an initial time of 1-3 h, the core-shell structure of the particles does not show significant changes, while a subsequent aggregation process among these primary units takes place. A shape transition of the SAXS profile at the late stage of the synthesis has been connected with an aggregation process among primary units that leads to the formation of large clusters with fractal characteristics. The formation of large supramolecular assemblies was finally verified by scanning electron microscopy, which evidenced the presence of submicrometer aggregates with size ranging between 100 and 300 nm, while X-ray diffraction confirmed the presence of crystalline zeolite LTA. The main finding of our results gives novel insight into the mechanism of formation of organic-inorganic mesoporous materials based on the use of a soft interacting nanotemplate as well as stimulates the investigation of alternative protocols for the synthesis of novel hybrid materials with new characteristics and properties.

  2. New glycosylated conjugate copolymer N-acetyl-β-D-glucosaminyl-pluronic: Synthesis, self-assembly and biological assays.

    PubMed

    Frizon, Tiago Elias Allievi; Micheletto, Yasmine Miguel Serafini; Westrup, José Luiz; Wakabayashi, Priscila Sayoko Silva; Serafim, Francieli Rocha; Damiani, Adriani Paganini; Longaretti, Luiza Martins; de Andrade, Vanessa Moraes; Giacomelli, Fernando Carlos; Fort, Sébastien; Dal Bó, Alexandre Gonçalves

    2015-09-01

    This work describes the synthesis of a new glycosylated conjugate copolymer, GlcNAc-PEO75-PPO30-PEO75-GlcNAc (GlcNAc-PluronicF68-GlcNAc), using click chemistry from Pluronic(®) F68 and propargyl-2-N-acetamido-2-deoxy-β-D-glucopyranoside. Micelles were prepared by the self-assembly of GlcNAc-PluronicF68-GlcNAc in phosphate-buffered solution. The critical micelle concentration was determined by fluorescence spectroscopy, and the value was found to be equal to 5.8mgmL(-1). The Gibbs free energy (ΔG) of micellization is negative, indicating that the organization of amphiphiles is governed by the hydrophobic effects in an entropy-driven process. The scattering characterization of GlcNAc-PluronicF68-GlcNAc micelles showed a hydrodynamic radius of 8.7nm and negative zeta potential (-21.0±0.9mV). The TEM image evidences the spherical shape of the objects self-assemble into highly regular micelles having a mean diameter of 10nm. The SAXS profile confirmed the spherical shape of the assemblies comprising a swollen PPO core (Rcore=2.25nm) stabilized by PEO chains following Gaussian statistics. The results of the comet assay showed that the GlcNAc-PluronicF68-GlcNAc micelles were not genotoxic, and the cell viability test was higher than 97% for all concentrations, demonstrating that GlcNAc-PluronicF68-GlcNAc is not toxic.

  3. Modeling the Heat Capacity of Spider Silk Inspired Di-block Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, W.; Krishnaji, S.; Kaplan, D.; Cebe, P.

    2011-03-01

    We synthesized and characterized a new family of di-block copolymers based on the amino acid sequences of Nephila clavipes major ampulate dragline spider silk, having the form HABn and HBAn (n=1-6), comprising an alanine-rich hydrophobic block, A, a glycine-rich hydrophilic block, B, and a histidine tag, H. Using temperature modulated differential scanning calorimetry (TMDSC), we captured the effect of bound water acting as a plasticizer for copolymer films which had been cast from water solution and dried. We determined the water content by thermogravimetry and used the weight loss vs. temperature to correct the mass in TMDSC experiments. Our result shows that non-freezing bound water has a strong plasticization effect which lowers the onset of the glass transition by about 10circ; C. The reversing heat capacities, Cp(T), for temperatures below and above the glass transition were also characterized by TMDSC. We then calculated the solid state heat capacities of our novel block copolymers below the glass transition (Tg) based on the vibrational motions of the constituent poly(amino acid)s, whose heat capacities are known from the ATHAS Data Bank. Excellent agreement was found between the measured and calculated values of the heat capacity, showing that this model can serve as a standard method to predict the solid state Cp for other biologically inspired block copolymers. Support was provided from the NSF CBET-0828028 and the MRI Program under DMR-0520655 for thermal analysis instrumentation.

  4. Novel stereocomplexed sol-gel transition hydrogels prepared from physical packing of self-assembled PEO-PPO-PEO and PPO-PEO-PPO copolymer nanoscale micelles.

    PubMed

    Lee, Yuhan; Park, Sung Young; Park, Tae Gwan

    2008-10-01

    A new class of stereocomplex-induced hydrogels was synthesized based on self-assembled PEO-PPO-PEO and PPO-PEO-PPO copolymers having multiple hydroxyl groups in the PPO segment. The copolymers were grafted with enantiomeric oligo(L-lactic acid) or oligo(D-lactic acid) chains using ring opening polymerization onto the PPO segment. WAXS and DSC analysis were used to investigate the stereocomplex formation of the equimolar mixture of the copolymers. The copolymer hydrogels having stereocomplexed crystalline domains as crosslinking loci exhibited significantly altered temperature-sensitive sol-gel transition behaviors, and showed more delayed erosion and sustained protein release behaviors, compared to Pluronic F127 copolymer hydrogels. The current hydrogels are expected to be used as useful injectable hydrogel materials for macromolecular drug delivery.

  5. A comparison of implicit- and explicit-solvent simulations of self-assembly in block copolymer and solute systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spaeth, Justin R.; Kevrekidis, Ioannis G.; Panagiotopoulos, Athanassios Z.

    2011-04-01

    We have developed explicit- and implicit-solvent models for the flash nanoprecipitation process, which involves rapid coprecipitation of block copolymers and solutes by changing solvent quality. The explicit-solvent model uses the dissipative particle dynamics (DPD) method and the implicit-solvent model uses the Brownian dynamics (BD) method. Each of the two models was parameterized to match key properties of the diblock copolymer (specifically, critical micelle concentration, diffusion coefficient, polystyrene melt density, and polyethylene glycol radius of gyration) and the hydrophobic solute (aqueous solubility, diffusion coefficient, and solid density). The models were simulated in the limit of instantaneous mixing of solvent with antisolvent. Despite the significant differences in the potentials employed in the implicit- and explicit-solvent models, the polymer-stabilized nanoparticles formed in both sets of simulations are similar in size and structure; however, the dynamic evolution of the two simulations is quite different. Nanoparticles in the BD simulations have diffusion coefficients that follow Rouse behavior (D ∝ M-1), whereas those in the DPD simulations have diffusion coefficients that are close to the values predicted by the Stokes-Einstein relation (D ∝ R-1). As the nanoparticles become larger, the discrepancy between diffusion coefficients grows. As a consequence, BD simulations produce increasingly slower aggregation dynamics with respect to real time and result in an unphysical evolution of the nanoparticle size distribution. Surface area per polymer of the stable explicit-solvent nanoparticles agrees well with experimental values, whereas the implicit-solvent nanoparticles are stable when the surface area per particle is roughly two to four times larger. We conclude that implicit-solvent models may produce questionable results when simulating nonequilibrium processes in which hydrodynamics play a critical role.

  6. A comparison of implicit- and explicit-solvent simulations of self-assembly in block copolymer and solute systems.

    PubMed

    Spaeth, Justin R; Kevrekidis, Ioannis G; Panagiotopoulos, Athanassios Z

    2011-04-28

    We have developed explicit- and implicit-solvent models for the flash nanoprecipitation process, which involves rapid coprecipitation of block copolymers and solutes by changing solvent quality. The explicit-solvent model uses the dissipative particle dynamics (DPD) method and the implicit-solvent model uses the Brownian dynamics (BD) method. Each of the two models was parameterized to match key properties of the diblock copolymer (specifically, critical micelle concentration, diffusion coefficient, polystyrene melt density, and polyethylene glycol radius of gyration) and the hydrophobic solute (aqueous solubility, diffusion coefficient, and solid density). The models were simulated in the limit of instantaneous mixing of solvent with antisolvent. Despite the significant differences in the potentials employed in the implicit- and explicit-solvent models, the polymer-stabilized nanoparticles formed in both sets of simulations are similar in size and structure; however, the dynamic evolution of the two simulations is quite different. Nanoparticles in the BD simulations have diffusion coefficients that follow Rouse behavior (D ∝ M(-1)), whereas those in the DPD simulations have diffusion coefficients that are close to the values predicted by the Stokes-Einstein relation (D ∝ R(-1)). As the nanoparticles become larger, the discrepancy between diffusion coefficients grows. As a consequence, BD simulations produce increasingly slower aggregation dynamics with respect to real time and result in an unphysical evolution of the nanoparticle size distribution. Surface area per polymer of the stable explicit-solvent nanoparticles agrees well with experimental values, whereas the implicit-solvent nanoparticles are stable when the surface area per particle is roughly two to four times larger. We conclude that implicit-solvent models may produce questionable results when simulating nonequilibrium processes in which hydrodynamics play a critical role.

  7. Intermolecular interactions and solvent diffusion in ordered nanostructures formed by self-assembly of block copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gu, Zhiyong

    Hydrogels formed by Poloxamer poly(ethylene oxide)-poly(propylene oxide) (PEO-PPO) block copolymers find various pharmaceutical and biomedical applications. A variety of ordered structures can be exhibited by Poloxamer block copolymers in selective solvents such as water, for example, micellar cubic phase, hexagonal phase, lamellar phase, etc. We are interested in the thermodynamic and transport properties of water in such hydrogels that have an ordered (lyotropic liquid crystalline) structure. We have investigated the time evolution of water loss from Poloxamer gel films under a driving force of known water vapor pressure in the air in contact with the film. The experimental data on the drying process have been fitted to the diffusion equation for water in the film, under a boundary condition that includes the water concentration in the gel at infinite time; the water diffusion coefficient and other parameters have thus been obtained. The water chemical potential and osmotic pressure in the gel have been obtained from osmotic stress measurements. The osmotic pressure (force), together with data on the corresponding lyotropic liquid crystal spacing (distance) that we obtained from Small Angle X-Ray Scattering (SAXS) measurements, have been analyzed to provide information on the prevailing intermolecular (inter-assembly) forces in the gel. The forces in the gel reveal interactions that occur at two levels, that of the PEO coil and that of the PEO segment.

  8. Process-directed self-assembly of multiblock copolymers: Solvent casting vs spray coating

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tang, Q.; Tang, J.; Müller, M.

    2016-10-01

    Using computer simulation of a soft, coarse-grained model and self-consistent field theory we investigate how collapsed, globular chain conformations in the initial stages of structure formation, which are produced by spray-coating, affect the single-chain structure and morphology of microphase-separated multiblock copolymers. Comparing spray-coated films with films that start from a disordered state of Gaussian chains, we observe that the collapsed molecular conformations in the initial stage give rise to (1) a smaller fraction of blocks that straddle domains (bridges), (2) a significant reduction of the molecular extension normal to the internal interfaces, and (3) a slightly larger lamellar domain spacing in the final morphology. The relaxation of molecular conformations towards equilibrium is very protracted for both processes - solvent casting and spray coating. These findings illustrate that the process conditions of the copolymer materials may significantly affect materials properties (such as mechanical properties) because the system does not reach thermal equilibrium on the relevant time scales.

  9. Role of solution structure in self-assembly of conjugated block copolymer thin films

    DOE PAGES

    Brady, Michael A.; Ku, Sung -Yu; Perez, Louis A.; ...

    2016-10-24

    Conjugated block copolymers provide a pathway to achieve thermally stable nanostructured thin films for organic solar cells. We characterized the structural evolution of poly(3-hexylthiophene)-block-poly(diketopyrrolopyrrole–terthiophene) (P3HT-b-DPPT-T) from solution to nanostructured thin films. Aggregation of the DPPT-T block of P3HT-b-DPPT-T was found in solution by small-angle X-ray scattering with the P3HT block remaining well-solvated. The nanostructure in thin films was determined using a combination of wide and small-angle X-ray scattering techniques as a function of processing conditions. The structure in solution controlled the initial nanostructure in spin-cast thin films, allowing subsequent thermal annealing processes to further improve the ordering. In contrast tomore » the results for thin films, nanostructural ordering was not observed in the bulk samples by small-angle X-ray scattering. Finally, these results suggest the importance of controlling solvent induced aggregation in forming nanostructured thin films of conjugated block copolymers.« less

  10. Role of solution structure in self-assembly of conjugated block copolymer thin films

    SciTech Connect

    Brady, Michael A.; Ku, Sung -Yu; Perez, Louis A.; Cochran, Justin E.; Schmidt, Kristin; Weiss, Thomas M.; Toney, Michael F.; Ade, Harald; Hexemer, Alexander; Wang, Cheng; Hawker, Craig J.; Kramer, Edward J.; Chabinyc, Michael L.

    2016-10-24

    Conjugated block copolymers provide a pathway to achieve thermally stable nanostructured thin films for organic solar cells. We characterized the structural evolution of poly(3-hexylthiophene)-block-poly(diketopyrrolopyrrole–terthiophene) (P3HT-b-DPPT-T) from solution to nanostructured thin films. Aggregation of the DPPT-T block of P3HT-b-DPPT-T was found in solution by small-angle X-ray scattering with the P3HT block remaining well-solvated. The nanostructure in thin films was determined using a combination of wide and small-angle X-ray scattering techniques as a function of processing conditions. The structure in solution controlled the initial nanostructure in spin-cast thin films, allowing subsequent thermal annealing processes to further improve the ordering. In contrast to the results for thin films, nanostructural ordering was not observed in the bulk samples by small-angle X-ray scattering. Finally, these results suggest the importance of controlling solvent induced aggregation in forming nanostructured thin films of conjugated block copolymers.

  11. Controllable Heparin-Based Comb Copolymers and Their Self-assembled Nanoparticles for Gene Delivery.

    PubMed

    Nie, Jing-Jun; Zhao, Weiyi; Hu, Hao; Yu, Bingran; Xu, Fu-Jian

    2016-04-06

    Polysaccharide-based copolymers have attracted much attention due to their effective performances. Heparin, as a kind of polysaccharide with high negative charge densities, has attracted much attention in biomedical fields. In this work, we report a flexible way to adjust the solubility of heparin from water to oil via the introduction of tetrabutylammonium groups for further functionalization. A range of heparin-based comb copolymers with poly(poly(ethylene glycol) methyl ether methacrylate) (PPEGMEMA), poly(dimethylaminoethyl methacrylate) (PDMAEMA), or PPEGMEMA-b-PDMAEMA side chains were readily synthesized in a MeOH/dimethylsulfoxide mixture via atom-transfer radical polymerization. The heparin-based polymer nanoparticles involving cationic PDMAEMA were produced due to the electrostatic interaction between the negatively charged heparin backbone and PDMAEMA grafts. Then the pDNA condensation ability, cytotoxicity, and gene transfection efficiency of the nanoparticles were characterized in comparison with the reported gene vectors. The nanoparticles were proved to be effective gene vectors with low cytotoxicity and high transfection efficiency. This study demonstrates that by adjusting the solubility of heparin, polymer graft functionalization of heparin can be readily realized for wider applications.

  12. Self-assembly of high-resolutions PS-b-PMMA block-copolymers: processes capabilities and integration on 300mm track

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chevalier, X.; Nicolet, C.; Tiron, R.; Gharbi, A.; Chamiot-Maitral, G.; Jullian, K.; Pimenta-Barros, P.; Argoud, M.; Peyre, J.-L.; Van Spaandonk, R.; Fleury, G.; Hadziioannou, G.; Navarro, C.

    2014-03-01

    Careful control and reproducibility of BCP's synthesis are mandatory parameters to push-down PS-b-PMMA block-copolymer systems toward its lowest dimensions for microelectronic applications. The self-assembly process optimization of different high-resolution cylindrical PS-b-PMMA block-copolymers (i.e. L0 period below 25 nm) is studied to highlight processes-variations as regard to more classical PS-b-PMMA systems while the characterizations of bulk materials provide deeper insights on the parameters addressing the self-assembly of such materials. The integration of a high-resolution BCP on 300 mm track is then studied to check the capabilities of such materials in terms of lithographic applications. CD uniformity measurements in contact hole shrink approach, as well as the transfer of the BCP mask into typical industrial under-layer stacks leading to aggressive features, show that these materials exhibit promising potentials for advanced lithographic nodes.

  13. Effect of guiding layer topography on chemoepitaxially directed self-assembly of block copolymers for pattern density multiplication

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nation, Benjamin D.; Peters, Andrew; Lawson, Richard A.; Ludovice, Peter J.; Henderson, Clifford L.

    2014-03-01

    Chemoepitaxy is often used to induce pattern density multiplication in the directed self-assembly (DSA) of block copolymers (BCPs) by using a chemically patterned guiding underlayer. This underlayer is often viewed as being a flat underlayer composed of a pinning stripe region and a neutral stripe region, where the pinning stripe is a region highly preferential to one phase of the BCP and the neutral stripe is a region that is slightly preferential to the other phase of the BCP that is not attracted by the pinning stripe. However, in producing these chemoepitaxial patterns, it is likely that unexpected topography might be introduced into the system, which may adversely affect the ability for the underlayer to guide the phase separation of the BCP film, and may deform any resulting lamellae. The current work presented in this paper explores the effect that topography in these chemoepitaxial underlayers has on the alignment of the BCP film. These underlayer effects have been evaluated using detailed mesoscale molecular dynamics simulations.

  14. Investigation of cross-linking poly(methyl methacrylate) as a guiding material in block copolymer directed self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seidel, Robert; Rincon Delgadillo, Paulina; Ramirez-Hernandez, Abelardo; Wu, Hengpeng; Her, Youngjun; Yin, Jian; Nealey, Paul; de Pablo, Juan; Gronheid, Roel

    2014-03-01

    Directed self-assembly (DDSA) of block copolymers ((BCP) is attracting a growing amount of interest as a techhnique to expand traditional lithography beyond its current limits. It has reecently been demonstrated that chemoepitaxy can be used to successfully ddirect BCP assembly to form large arrays off high-density features. The imec DSA LiNe flow uses lithography and trim-etch to produce a "prepattern" of cross-linked polystyrene (PS) stripes, which in turn guide the formation of assembled BCPP structures. Thhe entire process is predicated on the preferential interaction of the respective BCP domains with particular regionss of the underlying prepattern. The use of polystyrene as the guiding material is not uniquely required, however, and in fact may not even be preferable. This study investigates an alternate chemistry -- crosslinked poly(methyl methacrylate), X-PMMA, -- as the underlying polymer mat, providing a route to higher auto-affinity and therefore a stronger guiding ability. In addition to tthe advantages of the chemistry under investigation, this study explores the broader theme of extending BCP DSA to other materials.

  15. Model photo-responsive elastomers based on the self-assembly of side group liquid crystal triblock copolymers (Presentation Recording)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kurji, Zuleikha; Kornfield, Julia A.; Kuzyk, Mark G.

    2015-10-01

    We report the synthesis of azobenzene-containing coil-liquid crystal-coil triblock copolymers that form uniform and highly reproducible elastomers by self-assembly. To serve as actuators to (non-invasively) steer a fiber optic, for example in deep brain stimulation, the polymers are designed to become monodomain "single liquid crystal" elastomers during the fiber-draw process and to have a large stress/strain response to stimulation with either light or heat. A fundamental scientific question that we seek to answer is how the interplay between the concentration of photoresponsive mesogens and the proximity to the nematic-isotropic transition governs the sensitivity of the material to stimuli. Specifically, a matched pair of polymers, one with ~5% azobenzene-containing side groups (~95% cyanobiphenyl side groups) and the other with 100% cyanobiphenyl side groups were synthesized from identical triblock pre-polymers (with polystyerene end blocks and 1,2-polybutadiene midblocks). These can be blended in various ratios to prepare a series of elastomers that are precisely matched in terms of the backbone length between physical crosslinks (because each polymer is derived from the same pre-polymer), while differing in % azobenzene side groups, allowing the effect of concentration of photoresponsive groups to be unambiguously determined.

  16. Hydrodynamic-flow-driven phase evolution in a polymer blend film modified by diblock copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rysz, J.; Ermer, H.; Budkowski, A.; Bernasik, A.; Lekki, J.; Juengst, G.; Brenn, R.; Kowalski, K.; Camra, J.; Lekka, M.; Jedliński, J.

    We have studied surface-directed phase separation in thin films of deuterated polystyrene and poly(bromostyrene) (with 22.7% of monomers brominated) using ^{{3}}He nuclear reaction analysis, dynamic secondary ion mass spectroscopy and atomic force microscopy combined with preferential dissolution. The crossover from competing to neutral surfaces of the critical blend film (cast onto Au) was commenced: polyisoprene-polystyrene diblock copolymers were added and segregated to both surfaces reducing in a tuneable manner the effective interactions. Two main stages of phase evolution are characterised by i) the growth of two surface layers and by ii) the transition from the four-layer to the final bilayer morphology. For increasing copolymer content the kinetics of the first stage is hardly affected but the amplitude of composition oscillations is reduced indicating more fragmented inner layers. As a result, a faster mass flow to the surfaces and an earlier completion of the second stage were observed. The hydrodynamic flow mechanism, driving both stages, is evidenced by nearly linear growth of the surface layer and by mass flow channels extending from the surface layer into the bulk. The final bilayer structure, formed even for the surfaces covered by strongly overlapped copolymers, is indicative of long-range (antisymmetric) surface forces.

  17. Self-diffusion of Asymmetric Diblock Copolymers with a Spherical Domain Structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yokoyama, H.; Kramer, E. J.

    1997-03-01

    The molecular weight and temperature dependence of the self-diffusion coefficient D of spherically ordered asymmetric diblock copolymers of deuterated polystyrene-b-2vinylpyridine (dPS-PVP) in protonated hPS-PVP has been investigated using forward recoil spectrometry (FRES). In cases where the product of the number of segments of the PVP core block, N_PVP, and the interaction parameter, \\chi, exceeds roughly 10, D is much smaller than that of a homopolystyrene with the same molecular weight and D decreases exponentially with N_PVP. The temperature dependence of D is different from WLF, reflecting instead the temperature dependence of \\chi(T) in D = Aexp(-α\\chiN_PVP) where A and α are constants. On the other hand, when \\chiN_PVP is about 5, we did not observe a significant difference between D of the block copolymer and that of homopolystyrene. At this \\chiN_PVP, as well as at all larger values, an ordered spherical morphology is observed by TEM. The diffusion process at high \\chiN_PVP is thought to involve an thermally activated "hopping" mechanism in which single block copolymer chains diffuse by hopping from one spherical domain to another.

  18. Flexible one diode-one phase change memory array enabled by block copolymer self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Mun, Beom Ho; You, Byoung Kuk; Yang, Se Ryeun; Yoo, Hyeon Gyun; Kim, Jong Min; Park, Woon Ik; Yin, You; Byun, Myunghwan; Jung, Yeon Sik; Lee, Keon Jae

    2015-04-28

    Flexible memory is the fundamental component for data processing, storage, and radio frequency communication in flexible electronic systems. Among several emerging memory technologies, phase-change random-access memory (PRAM) is one of the strongest candidate for next-generation nonvolatile memories due to its remarkable merits of large cycling endurance, high speed, and excellent scalability. Although there are a few approaches for flexible phase-change memory (PCM), high reset current is the biggest obstacle for the practical operation of flexible PCM devices. In this paper, we report a flexible PCM realized by incorporating nanoinsulators derived from a Si-containing block copolymer (BCP) to significantly lower the operating current of the flexible memory formed on plastic substrate. The reduction of thermal stress by BCP nanostructures enables the reliable operation of flexible PCM devices integrated with ultrathin flexible diodes during more than 100 switching cycles and 1000 bending cycles.

  19. Self-Assembly of Pluronic Block Copolymers in Solutions: Simulation and Neutron Scattering

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Zhe; Hong, Kunlun; Do, Changwoo; Biology and Soft-Matter Division, Oak Ridge National Laboratory Team; Chemical Science Division, Oak Ridge National Laboratory Team

    2014-03-01

    Poly(ethylene oxide)-poly(propylene oxide)-poly(ethylene oxide) (PEO-PPO-PEO) triblock copolymers in water solution display various phase behaviors such as micellar, lamellar, and hexagonal phases and have been of great interest to researchers for their wide range of applications including templates of various nanostructures in solar cell and transportation of nanoparticles in drug delivery. In this study, we combined density functional theory-based mesoscale simulation and small-angle neutron scattering (SANS) experiments to investigate equilibrium structures of L62/water systems at different concentrations. Various simulation parameters found in the literature have been revisited with the experimental findings. Scattering experiments were found to be an excellent. This research is supported by the U.S. Department of Energy, Basic Energy Sciences, Materials Sciences and Energy Division.

  20. 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.

  1. Amphiphilic, cross-linkable diblock copolymers for multifunctionalized nanoparticles as biological probes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schmidtke, Christian; Pöselt, Elmar; Ostermann, Johannes; Pietsch, Andrea; Kloust, Hauke; Tran, Huong; Schotten, Theo; Bastús, Neus G.; Eggers, Robin; Weller, Horst

    2013-07-01

    Nanoparticles (NPs) play an increasingly important role in biological labeling and imaging applications. However, preserving their useful properties in an aqueous biological environment remains challenging, even more as NPs therein have to be long-time stable, biocompatible and nontoxic. For in vivo applications, size control is crucial in order to route excretion pathways, e.g. renal clearance vs. hepato-biliary accumulation. Equally necessary, cellular and tissue specific targeting demands suitable linker chemistry for surface functionalization with affinity molecules, like peptides, proteins, carbohydrates and nucleotides. Herein, we report a three stage encapsulation process for NPs comprised of (1) a partial ligand exchange by a multidentate polyolefinic amine ligand, PI-N3, (2) micellar encapsulation with a precisely tuned amphiphilic diblock PI-b-PEG copolymer, in which the PI chains intercalate to the PI-N3 prepolymer and (3) radical cross-linking of the adjacent alkenyl bonds. As a result, water-soluble NPs were obtained, which virtually maintained their primal physical properties and were exceptionally stable in biological media. PEG-terminal functionalization of the diblock PI-b-PEG copolymer with numerous functional groups was mostly straightforward by chain termination of the living anionic polymerization (LAP) with the respective reagents. More complex affinity ligands, e.g. carbohydrates or biotin, were introduced in a two-step process, prior to micellar encapsulation. Advantageously, this pre-assembly approach opens up rapid access to precisely tuned multifunctional NPs, just by using mixtures of diverse functional PI-b-PEG polymers in a combinatorial manner. All constructs showed no toxicity from 0.001 to 1 μM (particle concentration) in standard WST and LDH assays on A549 cells, as well as only marginal unspecific cellular uptake, even in serum-free medium.Nanoparticles (NPs) play an increasingly important role in biological labeling and imaging

  2. 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.

  3. Phase transition of a symmetric diblock copolymer induced by nanorods with different surface chemistry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, Yu-qi; Pan, Jun-xing; Sun, Min-na; Zhang, Jin-jun

    2017-01-01

    We investigate the phase transition of a symmetric diblock copolymer induced by nanorods with different surface chemistry. The results demonstrate that the system occurs the phase transition from a disordered structure to ordered parallel lamellae and then to the tilted layered structure as the number of rods increases. The dynamic evolution of the domain size and the order parameter of the microstructure are also examined. Furthermore, the influence of rod property, rod-phase interaction, rod-rod interaction, rod length, and polymerization degree on the behavior of the polymer system is also investigated systematically. Moreover, longer amphiphilic nanorods tend to make the polymer system form the hexagonal structure. It transforms into a perpendicular lamellar structure as the polymerization degree increases. Our simulations provide an efficient method for determining how to obtain the ordered structure on the nanometer scales and design the functional materials with optical, electronic, and magnetic properties.

  4. Crystallization in diblock copolymer thin films at different degrees of supercooling.

    PubMed

    Darko, C; Botiz, I; Reiter, G; Breiby, D W; Andreasen, J W; Roth, S V; Smilgies, D-M; Metwalli, E; Papadakis, C M

    2009-04-01

    The crystalline structures in thin films of polystyrene-b-poly(ethylene oxide) (PS-b-PEO) diblock copolymers were studied in dependence on the degree of supercooling. Atomic force microscopy showed that the crystalline domains (lamellae) consist of grains, which are macroscopic at low and intermediate degrees of supercooling, but of submicrometer size for strong supercooling. Using grazing-incidence wide-angle x-ray scattering, we could determine the grain orientation distribution function which shows that the chain stems are perpendicular to the lamellae at low supercooling, but tilted at intermediate and strong supercooling. These results suggest that, at intermediate and strong supercooling, the crystalline PEO lamellae do not grow homogeneously, but by the formation of small crystallites at the growth front.

  5. Structure-Property Relationships in CO2-philic (Co)polymers: Phase Behavior, Self-Assembly, and Stabilization of Water/CO2 Emulsions.

    PubMed

    Girard, Etienne; Tassaing, Thierry; Marty, Jean-Daniel; Destarac, Mathias

    2016-04-13

    This Review provides comprehensive guidelines for the design of CO2-philic copolymers through an exhaustive and precise coverage of factors governing the solubility of different classes of polymers. Starting from computational calculations describing the interactions of CO2 with various functionalities, we describe the phase behavior in sc-CO2 of the main families of polymers reported in literature. The self-assembly of amphiphilic copolymers of controlled architecture in supercritical carbon dioxide and their use as stabilizers for water/carbon dioxide emulsions then are covered. The relationships between the structure of such materials and their behavior in solutions and at interfaces are systematically underlined throughout these sections.

  6. 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.

  7. Giant Gyroid and Templates from High-Molecular-Weight Block Copolymer Self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, Sungmin; Kim, Yeongsik; Ahn, Hyungju; Kim, Jong Hak; Yoo, Pil J.; Ryu, Du Yeol

    2016-11-01

    We present a feasible approach to the direct development of three-dimensionally (3D) bicontinuous gyroid (GYR) nanostructure in high-molecular-weight, composition-controlled polystyrene-b-poly(methyl methacrylate) (PS-b-PMMA) films. The use of a neutral solvent vapor to elaborately control the swelling of block copolymer (BCP) films is essential to generate a direct pathway to GYR (or giant GYR) structure through a hexagonal (HEX) cylindrical morphology in the same material, because the thermal ordering of highly entangled BCP imposes the limit on the chain mobility. Along with the improved mechanical strength arising from the high molecular weight property of the polymers, the structural integrity and overall excellence of a large-scale GYR morphology were confirmed by the results of membrane performance, which showed greater permeability through the nanoporous GYR structure up to by a factor of three than that through the HEX structure. Moreover, a 3D nanoporous GYR template was applied to an affordable material to reproduce an inverse skeletal replica of the GYR structure with its structure being uniformly interconnected. This simple approach to the GYR template, owing to its structural tunability in a controlled composition of BCP, is anticipated to be applicable to a wide range of materialization for practical systems.

  8. Giant Gyroid and Templates from High-Molecular-Weight Block Copolymer Self-assembly

    PubMed Central

    Park, Sungmin; Kim, Yeongsik; Ahn, Hyungju; Kim, Jong Hak; Yoo, Pil J.; Ryu, Du Yeol

    2016-01-01

    We present a feasible approach to the direct development of three-dimensionally (3D) bicontinuous gyroid (GYR) nanostructure in high-molecular-weight, composition-controlled polystyrene-b-poly(methyl methacrylate) (PS-b-PMMA) films. The use of a neutral solvent vapor to elaborately control the swelling of block copolymer (BCP) films is essential to generate a direct pathway to GYR (or giant GYR) structure through a hexagonal (HEX) cylindrical morphology in the same material, because the thermal ordering of highly entangled BCP imposes the limit on the chain mobility. Along with the improved mechanical strength arising from the high molecular weight property of the polymers, the structural integrity and overall excellence of a large-scale GYR morphology were confirmed by the results of membrane performance, which showed greater permeability through the nanoporous GYR structure up to by a factor of three than that through the HEX structure. Moreover, a 3D nanoporous GYR template was applied to an affordable material to reproduce an inverse skeletal replica of the GYR structure with its structure being uniformly interconnected. This simple approach to the GYR template, owing to its structural tunability in a controlled composition of BCP, is anticipated to be applicable to a wide range of materialization for practical systems. PMID:27808242

  9. Self-Assembly of Asymmetrically Interacting ABC Star Triblock Copolymer Melts.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Kai; Zhang, Juan; Liang, Qin

    2015-11-12

    The phase behavior of asymmetrically interacting ABC star triblock copolymer melts is investigated by the self-consistent field theory (SCFT). Motivated by the experimental systems, in this study, we focus on the systems in which the Flory-Huggins interaction parameters satisfy χAC > χ BC ≈ χAB. Using various initialization strategies, a large number of periodic structures have been obtained in our calculations. A fourth-order pseudospectral algorithm combined with Anderson mixing method is used to compute the free energy of candidate structures carefully. The stability has been analyzed in detail by splitting the free energy into internal and entropic parts. A complete and complex triangular phase diagram is presented for a model with χAC > χBC = χAB in which 15 ordered phases, including two- and three-dimensional structures, have been predicted to be stable from the SCFT calculations. Generally speaking, with the asymmetrical interactions, the hierarchical structures tend to be formed near the B-rich corner of the triangular phase diagram. This work broadens the previous theoretical results from equal interaction systems to unequal interaction systems. The predicted phase behavior is in good agreement with experimental observations and previous theoretical results.

  10. Self-assembled pentablock copolymers for selective and sustained gene delivery

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang, Bingqi

    2011-05-15

    The poly(diethylaminoethyl methacrylate) (PDEAEM) - Pluronic F127 - PDEAEM pentablock copolymer (PB) gene delivery vector system has been found to possess an inherent selectivity in transfecting cancer cells over non-cancer cells in vitro, without attaching any targeting ligands. In order to understand the mechanism of this selective transfection, three possible intracellular barriers to transfection were investigated in both cancer and non-cancer cells. We concluded that escape from the endocytic pathway served as the primary intracellular barrier for PB-mediated transfection. Most likely, PB vectors were entrapped and rendered non-functional in acidic lysosomes of non-cancer cells, but survived in less acidic lysosomes of cancer cells. The work highlights the importance of identifying intracellular barriers for different gene delivery systems and provides a new paradigm for designing targeting vectors based on intracellular differences between cell types, rather than through the use of targeting ligands. The PB vector was further developed to simultaneously deliver anticancer drugs and genes, which showed a synergistic effect demonstrated by significantly enhanced gene expression in vitro. Due to the thermosensitive gelation behavior, the PB vector packaging both drug and gene was also investigated for its in vitro sustained release properties by using polyethylene glycol diacrylate as a barrier gel to mimic the tumor matrix in vivo. Overall, this work resulted in the development of a gene delivery vector for sustained and selective gene delivery to tumor cells for cancer therapy.

  11. Nanoparticle self-assembly in mixtures of phospholipids with styrene/maleic acid copolymers or fluorinated surfactants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vargas, Carolyn; Arenas, Rodrigo Cuevas; Frotscher, Erik; Keller, Sandro

    2015-12-01

    Self-assembling nanostructures in aqueous mixtures of bilayer-forming lipids and micelle-forming surfactants are relevant to in vitro studies on biological and synthetic membranes and membrane proteins. Considerable efforts are currently underway to replace conventional detergents by milder alternatives such as styrene/maleic acid (SMA) copolymers and fluorinated surfactants. However, these compounds and their nanosized assemblies remain poorly understood as regards their interactions with lipid membranes, particularly, the thermodynamics of membrane partitioning and solubilisation. Using 19F and 31P nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, static and dynamic light scattering, and isothermal titration calorimetry, we have systematically investigated the aggregational state of a zwitterionic bilayer-forming phospholipid upon exposure to an SMA polymer with a styrene/maleic acid ratio of 3 : 1 or to a fluorinated octyl phosphocholine derivative called F6OPC. The lipid interactions of SMA(3 : 1) and F6OPC can be thermodynamically conceptualised within the framework of a three-stage model that treats bilayer vesicles, discoidal or micellar nanostructures, and the aqueous solution as distinct pseudophases. The exceptional solubilising power of SMA(3 : 1) is reflected in very low membrane-saturating and solubilising polymer/lipid molar ratios of 0.10 and 0.15, respectively. Although F6OPC saturates bilayers at an even lower molar ratio of 0.031, this nondetergent does not solubilise lipids even at >1000-fold molar excess, thus highlighting fundamental differences between these two types of mild membrane-mimetic systems. We rationalise these findings in terms of a new classification of surfactants based on bilayer-to-micelle transfer free energies and discuss practical implications for membrane-protein research.Self-assembling nanostructures in aqueous mixtures of bilayer-forming lipids and micelle-forming surfactants are relevant to in vitro studies on biological and

  12. Correlation in SANS χ upon heating and pressurization for a diblock copolymer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cho, Junhan; Lee, Jumi; Ryu, Du Yeol

    2011-03-01

    The response of phase behavior to pressure for an A- b -B diblock copolymer in the disordered state has been studied by small-angle neutron scattering (SANS). Deuterated polystyrene- b -poly(n-propyl methacrylate) (dPS- b -PPrMA) copolymer, which possesses ordering transition upon heating and baroplasticity (suppressed demixing by pressurization), was taken as our model system. It was shown that effective Flory-Huggins parameter χF from scattering intensity profiles upon heating and pressurization forms a characteristic curve that is a function of pressure increment ΔP (≡ P -P0) divided by temperature dependent bulk modulus B0 at a reference pressure P0 . Each isotherm of χF is superposed into the curve by a scale factor τ determined by B0 . The scattering intensity maxima Imax , which is governed by χF , were also shown to reveal a similar superposition. The authors acknowledge support from NRF of Korea through Regional Scientist program and Nuclear R&D program.

  13. Dynamic Monte Carlo simulations of double crystallization accelerated in microdomains of diblock copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Yuan; Ma, Yu; Li, Juan; Jiang, Xiaoming; Hu, Wenbing

    2012-03-01

    We report dynamic Monte Carlo simulations of microphase separated diblock copolymers, to investigate how crystallization of one species could accelerate the subsequent crystallization of another species. Although the lattice copolymer model brings a boundary constraint to the long periods of microdomains, the single-molecular-level force balance between two blocks and its change can be revealed in this simple approach. We found two contrastable acceleration mechanisms: (1) the metastable lamellar crystals of one species become thicker at higher crystallization temperatures, sacrificing its microphase interfacial area to make a larger coil-stretching of another amorphous species and hence to accelerate subsequent crystallization of the latter with a more favorable conformation. (2) While in the case allowing chain-sliding in the crystal, the equilibrated lamellar crystals of one species become thinner at higher temperatures, sacrificing its thermal stability to gain a higher conformational entropy of another amorphous species and hence to accelerate subsequent crystallization of the latter with a stronger tension at the block junction. Parallel situations of experiments have been discussed.

  14. Morphology and Dynamics of Tapered Diblock Copolymers from fDFT-initialized MD Simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-03-01

    Tapered block copolymers are similar to AB diblock copolymers, but with a statistical A-to-B (normal) or B-to-A (inverse) gradient ``taper'' between the A and B blocks. Depending on the sequence of monomers along the chain and the segregation strength, the A and B monomers are known to microphase separate into various ordered morphologies. Tapering introduces an additional parameter, independent of molecular weight or polymer choice, to tune morphology, and has been shown previously to widen the gyroid region of the phase diagram.In this study, we use classical, fluids density functional theory (fDFT) and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations to study the morphology and dynamics of tapered systems. Using fDFT allows us to accurately compare free energies between different potential microphases as a function of interaction parameter and fraction of A. Because of the similarity of the fDFT and MD models, the fDFT results map very closely with the corresponding MD model. We use the fDFT density profiles to generate the initial state of the chains for the simulations. Lamellae, cylinders, and other phases can be generated in this way with approximately correct spacing and density. We apply the streamlined simulation setup to analyze the effect of tapering on conformations and dynamics.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-05-07

    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.

  16. Room temperature aqueous self-assembly of poly(ethylene glycol)-poly(4-vinyl pyridine) block copolymers: From spherical to worm-like micelles.

    PubMed

    Rodrigues, Daniela P; Costa, João R C; Rocha, Nuno; Góis, Joana R; Serra, Arménio C; Coelho, Jorge F J

    2016-09-01

    The solution self-assembly and the formation, at room temperature, of a wide range of nanostructures based on monomethyl ether poly(ethylene glycol)-b-poly(4-vinyl pyridine) (mPEG-b-P4VP) block copolymer is reported. Copolymers with different compositions and molecular weights were synthesized through Atom Transfer Radical Polymerization (ATRP) method. The solution self-assembly of the block copolymers was studied by transmission electron microscopy (TEM) for different solution pHs. It was found that the formation of non-spherical nanostructures, such as rod- and worm-like micelles can be easily achieved, at room temperature, by simply varying the molecular weight of the different segments as well as the mPEG to P4VP ratio in the block copolymer structure. Because P4VP segments are known to form strong complexes with metals, the nanostructures prepared in this manuscript can find innovative applications in the biomedical field and be used as nano-templates for inorganic materials.

  17. Organic-inorganic random copolymers from methacrylate-terminated poly(ethylene oxide) with 3-methacryloxypropylheptaphenyl polyhedral oligomeric silsesquioxane: synthesis via RAFT polymerization and self-assembly behavior.

    PubMed

    Wei, Kun; Li, Lei; Zheng, Sixun; Wang, Ge; Liang, Qi

    2014-01-14

    In this contribution, we report the synthesis of organic-inorganic random polymers from methacrylate-terminated poly(ethylene oxide) (MAPEO) (Mn = 950) and 3-methacryloxypropylheptaphenyl polyhedral oligomeric silsesquioxane (MAPOSS) macromers via reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization with 4-cyano-4-(thiobenzoylthio) valeric acid (CTBTVA) as the chain transfer agent. The organic-inorganic random copolymers were characterized by means of (1)H NMR spectroscopy, gel permeation chromatography (GPC) and differential scanning calorimetry (DSC). The results of GPC indicate that the polymerizations were carried out in a controlled fashion. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) showed that the organic-inorganic random copolymers in bulk were microphase-separated and the POSS microdomains were formed via POSS-POSS interactions. In aqueous solutions the organic-inorganic random copolymers were capable of self-assembling into spherical nanoobjects as evidenced by transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and dynamic laser scattering (DLS). The self-assembly behavior of the organic-inorganic random copolymers was also found to occur in the mixtures with the precursors of epoxy. The nanostructures were further fixed via subsequent curing reaction and thus the organic-inorganic nanocomposites were obtained. The formation of nanophases in epoxy thermosets was confirmed by transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and dynamic mechanical thermal analysis (DMTA). The organic-inorganic nanocomposites displayed the enhanced surface hydrophobicity as evidenced by surface contact angle measurements.

  18. Predicting process windows for pattern density multiplication using block copolymer directed self-assembly in conjunction with chemoepitaxial guiding layers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nation, Benjamin D.; Peters, Andrew; Lawson, Richard A.; Ludovice, Peter J.; Henderson, Clifford L.

    2014-03-01

    Pattern density multiplication using directed self-assembly (DSA) of block copolymers (BCPs) is a technique capable of producing patterns with small pitches utilizing guiding template patterns printed as larger feature sizes and pitches. One method for achieving this density multiplication is to utilize chemoepitaxy based on a guiding underlayer that is nominally topographically flat but which is composed of a pinning region, or stripe if referring to lamellae, which will chemically prefer one microphase of the BCP, as well as a second region that is often referred to as "neutral" to both phases of the BCP. In most conceptions of such a chemoepitaxial approach for alignment of lamellae patterns, the pinning stripe is typically the width of a single lamellae of the phase separated BCP, while the neutral stripe is some odd number of lamellae widths. In this work, detailed simulation studies have been performed to elucidate the effects of variables such as guiding stripe size, chemical composition of the neutral stripes, and small topography on the process window of DSA pitch sub-division patterning processes. A simple but novel technique has been developed and utilized to quantify the level of alignment of a simulated BCP film to an underlying guiding pattern. Such process windows and lithographic parameters have been studied for different pitch sub-division conditions including 1:3 and 1:5 pinning stripe:neutral stripe width ratios. It is found that the center of the processing window occurs at a composition of the "neutral stripe" such that it is slightly to somewhat strongly preferential to the type of polymer of opposite type to that attracted by the pinning stripe, and that this ideal "neutral stripe" composition becomes more neutral as the density multiplication increases.

  19. Quantitative Three-Dimensional Characterization of Block Copolymer Directed Self-Assembly on Combined Chemical and Topographical Prepatterned Templates.

    PubMed

    Segal-Peretz, Tamar; Ren, Jiaxing; Xiong, Shisheng; Khaira, Gurdaman; Bowen, Alec; Ocola, Leonidas E; Divan, Ralu; Doxastakis, Manolis; Ferrier, Nicola J; de Pablo, Juan; Nealey, Paul F

    2017-02-28

    Characterization of the three-dimensional (3D) structure in directed self-assembly (DSA) of block copolymers is crucial for understanding the complex relationships between the guiding template and the resulting polymer structure so DSA could be successfully implemented for advanced lithography applications. Here, we combined scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM) tomography and coarse-grain simulations to probe the 3D structure of P2VP-b-PS-b-P2VP assembled on prepatterned templates using solvent vapor annealing. The templates consisted of nonpreferential background and raised guiding stripes that had PS-preferential top surfaces and P2VP-preferential sidewalls. The full 3D characterization allowed us to quantify the shape of the polymer domains and the interface between domains as a function of depth in the film and template geometry and offered important insights that were not accessible with 2D metrology. Sidewall guiding was advantageous in promoting the alignment and lowering the roughness of the P2VP domains over the sidewalls, but incommensurate confinement from the increased topography could cause roughness and intermittent dislocations in domains over the background region at the bottom of the film. The 3D characterization of bridge structures between domains over the background and breaks within domains on guiding lines sheds light on possible origins of common DSA defects. The positional fluctuations of the PS/P2VP interface between domains showed a depth-dependent behavior, with high levels of fluctuations near both the free surface of the film and the substrate and lower fluctuation levels in the middle of the film. This research demonstrates how 3D characterization offers a better understanding of DSA processes, leading to better design and fabrication of directing templates.

  20. Sub-10nm lines and spaces patterning using grapho-epitaxial directed self-assembly of lamellar block copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seino, Yuriko; Sato, Hironobu; Kasahara, Yusuke; Minegishi, Shinya; Miyagi, Ken; Kubota, Hitoshi; Kanai, Hideki; Kodera, Katsuyoshi; Shiraishi, Masayuki; Kihara, Naoko; Kawamonzen, Yoshiaki; Tobana, Toshikatsu; Kobayashi, Katsutoshi; Yamano, Hitoshi; Azuma, Tsukasa; Nomura, Satoshi

    2016-04-01

    Our target at EIDEC is to study the feasibility of directed self-assembly (DSA) technology for semiconductor device manufacturing through electrical yield verification by development of such as process, material, metrology, simulation and design for DSA. We previously developed a grapho/chemo-hybrid coordinated line epitaxial process for sub-15-nm line-and-space (L/S) patterning using polystyrene-block-poly(methyl methacrylate) lamellar block copolymers (BCPs)1- 3. Electrical yield verification results showed that a 30% open yield was successfully achieved with a metal wire line length of 700 μm 4. In the next stage of the evaluation, a sub-10-nm L/S DSA patterning process based on graphoepitaxial DSA of 20-nm lamellar period organic BCPs was developed based on neutral layer and guide space width optimization. At a 30-nm guide height, problems such as BCP overflow and DSA line shorts were observed after the dry development. At a 60-nm guide height, grid-like short defects were observed under dry development shallow etch conditions and sub-10-nm L/S patterns were formed under optimized etch conditions with a suitable BCP film thickness margin. The process performance was evaluated in terms of defects and critical dimension measurements using an electron beam inspection system and critical dimension-scanning electron microscope metrology. The main DSA defects were short defects, and the spatial roughness appeared to be caused by the periodic pitches of these short defects and the guide roughness. We successfully demonstrated the fabrication of sub-10-nm metal wires consists of L/S, pad, connect and cut patterns with controlled alignment and stack structure through lithography, etching and CMP process on a 300- mm wafer using the fully integrated DSA process and damascene processing.

  1. 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.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-10-01

    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 (fPDMS'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 fPDMS 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 fPDMS 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.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

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

    DOE PAGES

    Misichronis, Konstantinos; Chen, Jihua; Kahk, Jong K.; ...

    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

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

    SciTech Connect

    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 of 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. Dispersion of alumina suspension using comb-like and diblock copolymers produced by RAFT polymerization of AMPS and MPEG.

    PubMed

    Bouhamed, H; Boufi, S; Magnin, A

    2007-08-15

    Different copolymers of 2-acrylamido-2-methylpropanesulfonic acid sodium salt (AMPS) methoxypolyethyleneglycol methacrylate (MPEG) with statistical and diblock distributions were prepared using RAFT-controlled radical polymerization. The effect of polymer architecture and monomer ratio on the adsorption behavior, electrokinetic, and stability properties of the alumina suspensions was investigated. Adsorption isotherms showed that copolymer interaction depended on both the ratio of the monomers and their distribution within the macromolecular backbone. Changes in the electrokinetic properties of the alumina suspension after addition of the copolymers were investigated by monitoring the particle zeta-potential as a function of pH. A continuous shift in the isoelectric point IEP to a more acidic value was observed and particle charges were reversed when the amount of copolymer added exceeded a critical level.

  8. Self-assemblies of γ-CDs with pentablock copolymers PMA-PPO-PEO-PPO-PMA and endcapping via atom transfer radical polymerization of 2-methacryloyloxyethyl phosphorylcholine.

    PubMed

    Lin, Jing; Kong, Tao; Ye, Lin; Zhang, Ai-Ying; Feng, Zeng-Guo

    2015-01-01

    Pentablock copolymers PMA-PPO-PEO-PPO-PMA synthesized via atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) were self-assembled with varying amounts of γ-CDs to prepare poly(pseudorotaxanes) (PPRs). When the concentration of γ-CDs was lower, the central PEO segment served as a shell of the micelles and was preferentially bent to pass through the γ-CD cavity to construct double-chain-stranded tight-fit PPRs characterized by a channel-like crystal structure. With an increase in the amount of γ-CDs added, they began to accommodate the poly(methyl acrylate) (PMA) segments dissociated from the core of the micelles. When more γ-CDs were threaded and slipped over the segments, the γ-CDs were randomly distributed along the pentablock copolymer chain to generate single-chain-stranded loose-fit PPRs and showed no characteristic channel-like crystal structure. All the self-assembly processes of the pentablock copolymers resulted in the formation of hydrogels. After endcapping via in situ ATRP of 2-methacryloyloxyethyl phosphorylcholine (MPC), these single-chain-stranded loose-fit PPRs were transformed into conformational identical polyrotaxanes (PRs). The structures of the PPRs and PRs were characterized by means of (1)H NMR, GPC, (13)C CP/MAS NMR, 2D (1)H NOESY NMR, FTIR, WXRD, TGA and DSC analyses.

  9. Effects of interaction of ionic and nonionic surfactants on self-assembly of PEO-PPO-PEO triblock copolymer in aqueous solution.

    PubMed

    Nambam, J S; Philip, John

    2012-02-09

    We study the effects of interaction of surfactants on the self-assembly of a triblock copolymer in aqueous solution by measuring percolation transition temperature (T(p)), micellar size, zeta potential, and rheological properties. We use PEO-PPO-PEO triblock copolymer (Pluronics-F108) with anionic sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS), cationic cetyltrimethylammonium bromide (CTAB), and nonionic nonylphenolethoxylate (NP9) for our investigations. The addition of SDS in pluronics solution leads to a dramatic reduction in the viscoelastic properties, while it remains almost unaffected with CTAB and NP9. The 2 orders of magnitude decrease in the elastic modulus in the presence of SDS indicates a soft solid-like microstructure formed by aggregating self-assembled triblock polymers. Our results indicate a strong electrostatic barrier imparted by the headgroup of SDS at the core-corona interface that inhibits the formation of hexagonally packed layers of micelles and the packing order. The analysis of autocorrelation function at high concentrations of ionic surfactant indicates that pure surfactant micelles coexist with large intermicellar structures. With increasing surfactant concentration, the zeta potential of the pluronic micelle is found to decrease. These results suggest that the microstructure and elastic properties of block copolymer micelles can be tuned by varying the concentrations of ionic surfactant that enhances their potential in applications as nanocarriers for drug delivery systems.

  10. Self-assembled supramolecular hydrogel based on PCL-PEG-PCL triblock copolymer and γ-cyclodextrin inclusion complex for sustained delivery of dexamethasone

    PubMed Central

    Khodaverdi, Elham; Gharechahi, Marzieh; Alibolandi, Mona; Tekie, Farnaz Sadat Mirzazadeh; Khashyarmanesh, Bibi Zahra; Hadizadeh, Farzin

    2016-01-01

    In this study, thermosensitive, water-soluble, and biodegradable triblock copolymer PCL600-PEG6000-PCL600 was used to form supramolecular hydrogel (SMGel) by inclusion complexation with γ-cyclodextrin (γ-CD). The prepared SMGel was investigated as a carrier for sustained release of dexamethasone. The triblock copolymer PCL-PEG-PCL [where PCL = polycaprolactone, PEG = poly(ethylene glycol)] was synthesized by the ring-opening polymerization method using microwave irradiation. The polymerization reaction and the copolymer structures were evaluated by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and gel permeation chromatography (GPC). SMGel was prepared in aqueous solution by blending an aqueous γ-CD solution with aqueous solution of PCL-PEG-PCL triblock copolymer at room temperature. The sol-to-gel transition time was measured at various concentrations of copolymer and γ-CD. As-prepared SMGel was used to prepare a sustained, controllable drug delivery system of dexamethasone sodium phosphate. The SMGel was also characterized in terms of rheological, morphological, and structural properties. Results obtained from proton nuclear magnetic resonance ( 1H-NMR) and GPC demonstrated that microwave irradiation is a simple and reliable method for synthesis of PEG-PCL copolymer. The SMGel with excellent syringability was prepared by mixing of 20% wt γ-CD and 10% wt of copolymer within 4 s. The SMGel containing 10% wt copolymer, 20% wt γ-CD, and 0.5% or 0.1% wt dexamethasone released approximately 100% and 45% of drug over up to 23 days, respectively. It could be concluded that SMGel based on self-assembly of inclusion complexes between PCL-PEG-PCL copolymer and γ-CD could be used as a basis for injectable drug delivery systems that provide sustained and controlled release of macromolecular drugs such as dexamethasone. PMID:27051627

  11. 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

  12. Soft self-assembled nanoparticles with temperature-dependent properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rovigatti, Lorenzo; Capone, Barbara; Likos, Christos N.

    2016-02-01

    The fabrication of versatile building blocks that reliably self-assemble into desired ordered and disordered phases is amongst the hottest topics in contemporary materials science. To this end, microscopic units of varying complexity, aimed at assembling the target phases, have been thought, designed, investigated and built. Such a path usually requires laborious fabrication techniques, especially when specific functionalisation of the building blocks is required. Telechelic star polymers, i.e., star polymers made of a number of f di-block copolymers consisting of solvophobic and solvophilic monomers grafted on a central anchoring point, spontaneously self-assemble into soft patchy particles featuring attractive spots (patches) on the surface. Here we show that the tunability of such a system can be widely extended by controlling the physical and chemical parameters of the solution. Indeed, under fixed external conditions the self-assembly behaviour depends only on the number of arms and on the ratio of solvophobic to solvophilic monomers. However, changes in temperature and/or solvent quality make it possible to reliably change the number and size of the attractive patches. This allows the steering of the mesoscopic self-assembly behaviour without modifying the microscopic constituents. Interestingly, we also demonstrate that diverse combinations of the parameters can generate stars with the same number of patches but different radial and angular stiffness. This mechanism could provide a neat way of further fine-tuning the elastic properties of the supramolecular network without changing its topology.

  13. A comparison of plasmid DNA delivery efficiency and cytotoxicity of two cationic diblock polyoxazoline copolymers.

    PubMed

    Lehner, Roman; Liu, Kegang; Wang, Xueya; Wolf, Marc; Hunziker, Patrick

    2017-04-28

    Cationic polymers as non-viral gene delivery carriers are widely used because of their strong condensing properties and long-term safety, but acute cytotoxicity is a persistent challenge. In this study, two types of polyplexes were prepared by co-formulating plasmid DNA and two cationic diblock copolymers PABOXA5-b-PMOXA33-PA (primary amine) and PABOXA5-b-PMOXA33-TA (tertiary amine) to check their transfection efficacies in HeLa cells and HEK293T cells, respectively. The plasmid DNA/PABOXA5-b-PMOXA33-PA polyplex showed higher transfection efficacy compared to the plasmid DNA/PABOXA5-b-PMOXA33-TA polyplex under an N/P ratio of 40. Both polymers exhibited low toxicity, attributed to the shielding effect of a hydrophilic, noncharged block. Mechanistic insight into differential transfection efficiencies of the polymers were gained by visualization and comparison of the condensates via transmission electron and atomic force microscopy. The results provide information suited for further structure optimization of polymers that are aimed for targeted gene delivery.

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

    PubMed

    Zhu, Zhengxi

    2013-12-01

    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 non-equilibrium 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.

  15. 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

  16. 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.

  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. 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

  19. 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.

  20. Calculations of the free energy of dislocation defects in lamellae forming diblock copolymers using thermodynamic integration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peters, Andrew J.; Lawson, Richard A.; Nation, Benjamin D.; Ludovice, Peter J.; Henderson, Clifford L.

    2016-04-01

    State-of-the-art directed self-assembly (DSA) of block copolymer (BCP) methods still yield defect densities orders of magnitude higher than is necessary in semiconductor fabrication. The defect free energy of a dislocation pair or jog defect, one of the most common defects found in BCP-DSA, is calculated via thermodynamic integration using a coarse-grained molecular dynamics model as a function of χ and the degree of polymerization (N). It is found that χN is not the best predictor of defect free energy and that a single χN value can yield vastly different free energies when χ and N are different. Defect free energy was highly dependent on defect location relative to the underlayer, and free energy differences ˜100 kT were found among the three possible defect locations on a 1:3 guiding pattern. It was found that increasing molar mass dispersity (Ð) significantly reduced defect free energy. Extrapolating from Ð up to 1.5 suggests that the defect will occur in equal proportions to the defect free state at a Ð of around 1.6 for this system. It was found that long chains tended to concentrate near the defect and stabilize the defect.

  1. Tailoring Carbon Nanostructure with Diverse and Tunable Morphology by the Pyrolysis of Self-Assembled Lamellar Nanodomains of a Block Copolymer.

    PubMed

    Sun, Ya-Sen; Huang, Wei-Hua; Lin, Chien-Fu; Cheng, Shao-Liang

    2017-02-28

    The pyrolysis of a block copolymer thin film, the free surface of which was in contact with air or a capping layer of SiO2, produced four carbon nanostructures. Thin films of a diblock copolymer having perpendicularly oriented lamellar nanodomains served as carbon and nitrogen precursors. Before pyrolysis, the lamellar nanodomains were cross-linked with UV irradiation under nitrogen gas (UVIN). Without a capping layer, pyrolysis caused a structural transformation from lamellar nanodomains to short carbon nanowires or to dropletlike nanocarbons in a row via Rayleigh instability, depending on the duration of pyrolysis. When capped with a layer of SiO2 followed by pyrolysis, the lamellar nanodomains were converted to pod-like, spaghetti-like, or long worm-like carbon nanostructures. These carbon nanostructures were driven by controlling the surface or interface tension and the residual yield of solid carbonaceous species.

  2. Disorder-to-order transitions induced by alkyne/azide click chemistry in diblock copolymer thin films.

    SciTech Connect

    Wei, X.; Gu, W.; Chen, W.; Shen, X.; Liu, F.; Strzalka, J. W.; Jiang, Z.; Russell, T. P.

    2012-01-01

    We investigated thin film morphologies of binary blends of alkyne-functionalized diblock copolymer poly(ethylene oxide)-block-poly(n-butyl methacrylate-random-propargyl methacrylate) (PEO-b-P(nBMA-r-PgMA)) and Rhodamine B azide, where the thermal alkyne/azide click reaction between the two components induced a disorder-to-order transition (DOT) of the copolymer. By controlling the composition of the neat copolymers and the mole ratio between the alkyne and azide groups, different microphase separated morphologies were achieved. At higher azide loading ratios, a perpendicular orientation of the microdomains was observed with wide accessible film thickness window. As less azide was incorporated, the microdomains have a stronger tendency to be parallel to the substrate, and the film thickness window for perpendicular orientation also became narrower.

  3. Bioadhesion of various proteins on random, diblock and triblock copolymer surfaces and the effect of pH conditions

    PubMed Central

    Palacio, Manuel L. B.; Schricker, Scott R.; Bhushan, Bharat

    2011-01-01

    The adhesive interactions of block copolymers composed of poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA)/poly(acrylic acid) (PAA) and poly(methyl methacrylate)/poly(2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate) (PHEMA) with the proteins fibronectin, bovine serum albumin and collagen were studied by atomic force microscopy. Adhesion experiments were performed both at physiological pH and at a slightly more acidic condition (pH 6.2) to model polymer–protein interactions under inflammatory or infectious conditions. The PMMA/PAA block copolymers were found to be more sensitive to the buffer environment than PMMA/PHEMA owing to electrostatic interactions between the ionized acrylate groups and the proteins. It was found that random, diblock and triblock copolymers exhibit distinct adhesion profiles although their chemical compositions are identical. This implies that biomaterial nanomorphology can be used to control protein–polymer interactions and potentially cell adhesion. PMID:21147831

  4. Synthesis and self-assembly of chitosan-g-polystyrene copolymer: a new route for the preparation of heavy metal nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Francis, Raju; Baby, Deepa K; Gnanou, Yves

    2015-01-15

    Amphiphilic graft copolymers made of a Chitosan (CS) backbone and three arm polystyrene (PS) grafts were prepared by "grafting onto" strategy using Toluene Diisocyanate. IR spectroscopy and SEC show the successful grafting process. SEM pictures of Chitosan-g-Polystyrene (CS-g-PS) indicate a spherulite like surface and exhibit properties that result from the disappearance of Chitosan crystallinity. The introduced polystyrene star grafts units improve hydrophobic properties considerably as confirmed by the very high solubility of (CS-g-PS) in organic solvents. The graft copolymer which self-assembles into polymeric micelles in organic media demonstrates much better adsorption of transition and inner transition metal ions than pure Chitosan whose amine groups are not necessarily available due to crystallinity.

  5. 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.

  6. Structure–Conductivity Relationships in Ordered and Disordered Salt-Doped Diblock Copolymer/Homopolymer Blends

    SciTech Connect

    Irwin, Matthew T.; Hickey, Robert J.; Xie, Shuyi; So, Soonyong; Bates, Frank S.; Lodge, Timothy P.

    2016-11-21

    We examine the relationship between structure and ionic conductivity in salt-containing ternary polymer blends that exhibit various microstructured morphologies, including lamellae, a hexagonal phase, and a bicontinuous microemulsion, as well as the disordered phase. These blends consist of polystyrene (PS, Mn ≈ 600 g/mol) and poly(ethylene oxide) (PEO, Mn ≈ 400 g/mol) homopolymers, a nearly symmetric PS–PEO block copolymer (Mn ≈ 4700 g/mol), and lithium bis(trifluoromethane)sulfonamide (LiTFSI). These pseudoternary blends exhibit phase behavior that parallels that of well-studied ternary polymer blends consisting of A and B homopolymers compatibilized by an AB diblock copolymer. The utility of this framework is that all blends have nominally the same number of ethylene oxide, styrene, Li+, and TFSI– units, yet can exhibit a variety of microstructures depending on the relative ratio of the homopolymers to the block copolymer. For the systems studied, the ratio r = [Li+]/[EO] is maintained at 0.06, and the volume fraction of PS homopolymer is kept equal to that of PEO homopolymer plus salt. The total volume fraction of homopolymer is varied from 0 to 0.70. When heated through the order–disorder transition, all blends exhibit an abrupt increase in conductivity. However, analysis of small-angle X-ray scattering data indicates significant structure even in the disordered state for several blend compositions. By comparing the nature and structure of the disordered states with their corresponding ordered states, we find that this increase in conductivity through the order–disorder transition is most likely due to the elimination of grain boundaries. In either disordered or ordered states, the conductivity decreases as the total amount of homopolymer is increased, an unanticipated observation. This trend with increasing homopolymer loading is hypothesized to result from an increased density of

  7. Substrate effect on nanoporous structure of silica wires by channel-confined self-assembly of block-copolymer and sol-gel precursors

    DOE PAGES

    Hu, Michael Z.; Lai, Peng

    2015-09-22

    Nanoporous silica wires of various wire diameters were developed by space-confined molecular self-assembly of triblock copolymer ethylene/propylene/ethylene (P123) and silica alkoxide precursor (tetraethylorthosilicate, TEOS). Two distinctive hard-templating substrates, anodized aluminum oxide (AAO) and track-etched polycarbonate (EPC), with channel diameters in the range between 10 nm and 200 nm were employed for space-confinement of soft molecular self-assembly driven by the block-copolymer microphase separation. It was observed in the scanning and transmission electron microscope (STEM) studies that the substrate geometry and material characteristics had pronounced effects on the structure and morphology of the silica nanowires. A substrate wall effect was proposed tomore » explain the ordering and orientation of the intra-wire mesostructure. Circular and spiral nanostructures were found only in wires formed in AAO substrate, not in EPC. Pore-size differences and distinctive wall morphologies of the nanowires relating to the substrates were discussed. It was shown that the material and channel wall characteristics of different substrates play key roles in the ordering and morphology of the intra-wire nanostructures.« less

  8. Substrate effect on nanoporous structure of silica wires by channel-confined self-assembly of block-copolymer and sol-gel precursors

    SciTech Connect

    Hu, Michael Z.; Lai, Peng

    2015-09-22

    Nanoporous silica wires of various wire diameters were developed by space-confined molecular self-assembly of triblock copolymer ethylene/propylene/ethylene (P123) and silica alkoxide precursor (tetraethylorthosilicate, TEOS). Two distinctive hard-templating substrates, anodized aluminum oxide (AAO) and track-etched polycarbonate (EPC), with channel diameters in the range between 10 nm and 200 nm were employed for space-confinement of soft molecular self-assembly driven by the block-copolymer microphase separation. It was observed in the scanning and transmission electron microscope (STEM) studies that the substrate geometry and material characteristics had pronounced effects on the structure and morphology of the silica nanowires. A substrate wall effect was proposed to explain the ordering and orientation of the intra-wire mesostructure. Circular and spiral nanostructures were found only in wires formed in AAO substrate, not in EPC. Pore-size differences and distinctive wall morphologies of the nanowires relating to the substrates were discussed. It was shown that the material and channel wall characteristics of different substrates play key roles in the ordering and morphology of the intra-wire nanostructures.

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. Self-assembled all-conjugated block copolymer as an effective hole conductor for solid-state dye-sensitized solar cells.

    PubMed

    Chen, Wei-Chih; Lee, Yi-Huan; Chen, Chia-Yuan; Kau, Kuo-Chang; Lin, Lu-Yin; Dai, Chi-An; Wu, Chun-Guey; Ho, Kuo-Chuan; Wang, Juen-Kai; Wang, Leeyih

    2014-02-25

    An all-conjugated diblock copolymer, poly(2,5-dihexyloxy-p-phenylene)-b-poly(3-hexylthiophene) (PPP-b-P3HT), was synthesized and applied as a hole transport material (HTM) for the fabrication of solid-state dye-sensitized solar cells (ss-DSCs). This copolymer is characterized by an enhanced crystallinity, enabling its P3HT component to self-organize into interpenetrated and long-range-ordered crystalline fibrils upon spin-drying and ultimately endowing itself to have a faster hole mobility than that of the parent P3HT homopolymer. Transient photovoltage measurements indicate that the photovoltaic cell based on PPP-b-P3HT as the HTM has a longer electron lifetime than that of the reference device based on P3HT homopolymer. Moreover, comparing the two ss-DSCs in terms of the electrochemical impedance spectra reveals that the electron density in the TiO2 conduction band is substantially higher in the PPP-b-P3HT device than in the P3HT cell. Above observations suggest that the PPP block facilitates an intimate contact between the copolymer and dye molecules absorbed on the nanoporous TiO2 layer, which significantly enhances the performance of the resulting device. Consequently, the PPP-b-P3HT ss-DSC exhibits a promising power conversion efficiency of 4.65%. This study demonstrates that conjugated block copolymers can function as superior HTMs of highly efficient ss-DSCs.

  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. Synthesis, characterization, and self-assembly of linear poly(ethylene oxide)-block-poly(propylene oxide)-block-poly(ε-caprolactone) (PEO-PPO-PCL) copolymers.

    PubMed

    Xu, Lifang; Zhang, Zhiqing; Wang, Fang; Xie, Dongdong; Yang, Shan; Wang, Tao; Feng, Lijuan; Chu, Chengchai

    2013-03-01

    Amphiphilic triblock copolymers of PEO-PPO-PCL with various block compositions have been synthesized by ring-opening polymerization (ROP) of ε-caprolactone (ε-CL) initiated by the OH group of methoxy-poly(ethylene oxide)-poly(propylene oxide) (Me-PEO-PPO). Their structures were confirmed by Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) measurements, and their self-assembly in aqueous solution was studied using fluorescence spectroscopy, transmission electron microscopy (TEM), UV-vis spectra, differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), and surface tension. For the copolymers studied in this paper, the critical aggregation concentrations (CAC) ranged from 5×10(3) to 2 mg/L. The critical micelle concentrations (CMC) decreased with increasing PCL block length, and the downtrend was more significant in the short PCL block length. All of the three copolymers were capable of solubilizing hydrophobic molecules (pyrene) in aqueous solution and copolymers with a longer PCL block exhibited a stronger solubilizing ability. The TEM images showed that the size and morphology of the aggregations could be tuned by varying the compositions or the concentration.

  15. Stimuli-Sensitive Biodegradable and Amphiphilic Block Copolymer-Gemcitabine Conjugates Self-Assemble into a Nanoscale Vehicle for Cancer Therapy.

    PubMed

    Duan, Zhenyu; Zhang, Yanhong; Zhu, Hongyan; Sun, Ling; Cai, Hao; Li, Bijin; Gong, Qiyong; Gu, Zhongwei; Luo, Kui

    2017-02-01

    The availability and the stability of current anticancer agents, particularly water-insoluble drugs, are still far from satisfactory. A widely used anticancer drug, gemcitabine (GEM), is so poorly stable in circulation that some polymeric drug-delivery systems have been under development for some time to improve its therapeutic index. Herein, we designed, prepared, and characterized a biodegradable amphiphilic block N-(2-hydroxypropyl) methacrylamide (HPMA) copolymer-GEM conjugate-based nanoscale and stimuli-sensitive drug-delivery vehicle. An enzyme-sensitive oligopeptide sequence glycylphenylalanylleucylglycine (GFLG) was introduced to the main chain with hydrophilic and hydrophobic blocks via the reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization. Likewise, GEM was conjugated to the copolymer via the enzyme-sensitive peptide GFLG, producing a high molecular weight (MW) product (90 kDa) that can be degraded into smaller MW segments (<50 kDa), and ensuring potential rapid site-specific release and stability in vivo. The amphiphilic copolymer-GEM conjugate can self-assemble into compact nanoparticles. NIR fluorescent images demonstrated that the conjugate-based nanoparticles could accumulate and be retained within tumors, resulting in significant increased antitumor efficacy compared to free GEM. The conjugate was not toxic to organs of the mice as measured by body weight reductions and histological analysis. In summary, this biodegradable amphiphilic block HPMA copolymer-gemcitabine conjugate has the potential to be a stimuli-sensitive and nanoscale drug-delivery vehicle.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  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. Polyelectrolyte Complex Hydrogels: Self-assembly and the Influence of Charged and Neutral Blocks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Srivastava, Samanvaya; Goldfeld, David; Levi, Adam; Mao, Jun; Chen, Wei; Tirrell, Matthew

    Polyelectrolyte complexes (PEC) form when oppositely charged polyelectrolyte chains spontaneously associate and phase separate in aqueous mediums. Bulk phase separation of the PECs can be evaded by combining one or both of the polyelectrolytes with a neutral polymer, thus engineering pathways for self-assembled PEC micelles and hydrogels. The PEC domains in these assemblies can encapsulate therapeutics as well as genetic materials and thus have tremendous potential in drug delivery and tissue engineering applications. We will present insights on the equilibrium structure and self-assembly kinetics of PEC hydrogels with large-scale ordering of the nanoscale PEC domains through detailed structure characterization and rheology studies of self-assembled materials comprising of functionalized polyallyl glycidyl ethers (PAGE) connected to either single poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) chain to form diblock copolymers or as functionalized end-groups on a triblock copolymer with a PEG midblock. The effect of key parameters such as polymer concentration, polymer block lengths, salt, ionic strength, and degree of charge mismatch on the equilibrium materials properties will be discussed, with a special emphasis on the structure-defining role of the charged blocks and the structure-directing role of neutral blocks. Additionally, interesting similarities, and differences between structures and dynamics of hydrogels comprising diblock and corresponding triblock polyelectrolytes, respectively, will be discussed.

  20. Redox-Responsive Self-Assembly Micelles from Poly(N-acryloylmorpholine-block-2-acryloyloxyethyl ferrocenecarboxylate) Amphiphilic Block Copolymers as Drug Release Carriers.

    PubMed

    Xu, Feng; Li, He; Luo, Yan-Ling; Tang, Wei

    2017-02-15

    Novel well-defined redox-responsive ferrocene-containing amphiphilic block copolymers (PACMO-b-PAEFC) were synthesized by ATRP, with poly(N-acryloylmorpholine) (PACMO) as hydrophilic blocks and poly(2-acryloyloxyethyl ferrocenecarboxylate) (PAEFC) as hydrophobic blocks. The copolymers were characterized by FT-IR and (1)H NMR spectroscopies and gel permeation chromatography, and the crystalline behavior was determined by X-ray diffraction and small-angle X-ray scattering. The results showed that the size of the lamellar crystals and crystallinity vary with the systematic compositions while the periodic structure of the lamellar stacks has no obvious change. These block copolymers could self-assemble and form globular nanoscaled core-shell micellar aggregates in aqueous solution. The reductive ferrocene groups could be changed into hydrophilic ferrocenium via mild oxidation, whereas the polymer micelles at the oxidation state could reversibly recover from their original states upon reduction by vitamin C. The tunable redox response was investigated and verified by transmission electron microscopy, ultraviolet-visible spectroscopy, cyclic voltammetry, and dynamic light scattering measurements. The copolymer micelles were used to entrap anticancer drug paclitaxel (PTX), with high drug encapsulation efficiency of 61.4%, while the PTX-loaded drug formulation exhibited oxidation-controlled drug release, and the release rate could be mediated by the kinds and concentrations of oxidants. MTT assay was performed to disclose the biocompatibility and security of the copolymer micelles and to assess anticancer efficiency of the PTX-loaded nanomicelles. The developed copolymer nanomicelles with reversible redox response are anticipated to have potential in targeted drug delivery systems for cancer therapy.

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

    SciTech Connect

    Scalfani, VF; Wiesenauer, EF; Ekblad, JR; Edwards, JP; Gin, DL; Bailey, TS

    2012-05-22

    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(DOD) = 0.42-0.96) and the overall molecular weights of the block copolymers (M-n values from 5000-20 100 g mol(-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-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(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 network was detected over

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. The static structure and dynamics of cadmium sulfide nanoparticles within poly(styrene-block-isoprene) diblock copolymer melts

    DOE PAGES

    Jang, Woo -Sik; Koo, Peter; Bryson, Kyle; ...

    2015-12-20

    Here, the static structure and dynamic behavior of cadmium sulfide nanoparticles suspended in block copolymer matrix are investigated using transmission electron microscopy, small-angle X-ray scattering, and X-ray photon correlation spectroscopy. The transmission electron micro- scopy study shows that cadmium sulfide nanoparticles are preferentially segregated within the polyisoprene domain of a poly(styrene-block-isoprene) diblock copolymer. For the dynamics study, X-ray photon correlation spectroscopy captures the relaxation process of cadmium sulfide nanoparticles. The measured characteristic relaxation time reveals that the observed dynamics are hyperdiffusive. The characteristic velocity and corresponding activation energy, which are hallmarks of a hyperdiffusive system, are determined from the relationshipmore » between the characteristic relaxation time and the wavevector.« less

  7. The static structure and dynamics of cadmium sulfide nanoparticles within poly(styrene-block-isoprene) diblock copolymer melts

    SciTech Connect

    Jang, Woo -Sik; Koo, Peter; Bryson, Kyle; Narayanan, Suresh; Sandy, Alec R.; Russell, Thomas P.; Mochrie, Simon G.

    2015-12-20

    Here, the static structure and dynamic behavior of cadmium sulfide nanoparticles suspended in block copolymer matrix are investigated using transmission electron microscopy, small-angle X-ray scattering, and X-ray photon correlation spectroscopy. The transmission electron micro- scopy study shows that cadmium sulfide nanoparticles are preferentially segregated within the polyisoprene domain of a poly(styrene-block-isoprene) diblock copolymer. For the dynamics study, X-ray photon correlation spectroscopy captures the relaxation process of cadmium sulfide nanoparticles. The measured characteristic relaxation time reveals that the observed dynamics are hyperdiffusive. The characteristic velocity and corresponding activation energy, which are hallmarks of a hyperdiffusive system, are determined from the relationship between the characteristic relaxation time and the wavevector.

  8. Organic solvent-free low temperature method of preparation for self assembled amphiphilic poly(ϵ-caprolactone)-poly(ethylene glycol) block copolymer based nanocarriers for protein delivery.

    PubMed

    Payyappilly, Sanal Sebastian; Panja, Sudipta; Mandal, Pijush; Dhara, Santanu; Chattopadhyay, Santanu

    2015-11-01

    Degradation and denaturation of labile biomolecules during preparation of micelles by organic solvent at high temperature are some of the limitations for fabrication of advanced polymer based protein delivery systems. In this paper, effectiveness of heat-chill method for preparation of micelles containing large labile biomolecules was investigated using insulin as a model protein molecule. Micelles (average size, <120 nm) were prepared using amphiphilic diblock and triblock copolymers of poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) and poly(ϵ-caprolactone) (PCL). Micelles were prepared by heating PEG-PCL block copolymers with distilled water at 60 °C followed by sudden chilling in an ice-water bath. Effects of molecular architecture on morphology, stability and protein loading capacity of micelles were investigated. Micelles prepared using high molecular weight block copolymers exhibited good colloidal stability, encapsulation efficiency and insulin release characteristics. Insulin retained its secondary structure after micelles preparation as confirmed by CD spectroscopic study. Furthermore, in vitro cytotoxicity test suggested that the prepared micellar nanoparticles possessed biocompatibility. In a nut shell, heat-chill method of micellar nanoparticles preparation is well suited for encapsulating labile proteins and other allied biomolecules which degrade in presence of toxic organic solvents and at elevated temperatures.

  9. Nanoscale silicon substrate patterns from self-assembly of cylinder forming poly(styrene)-block-poly(dimethylsiloxane) block copolymer on silane functionalized surfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Borah, Dipu; Cummins, Cian; Rasappa, Sozaraj; Watson, Scott M. D.; Pike, Andrew R.; Horrocks, Benjamin R.; Fulton, David A.; Houlton, Andrew; Liontos, George; Ntetsikas, Konstantinos; Avgeropoulos, Apostolos; Morris, Michael A.

    2017-01-01

    Poly(styrene)-block-poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PS-b-PDMS) is an excellent block copolymer (BCP) system for self-assembly and inorganic template fabrication because of its high Flory-Huggins parameter (χ ˜ 0.26) at room temperature in comparison to other BCPs, and high selective etch contrast between PS and PDMS block for nanopatterning. In this work, self-assembly in PS-b-PDMS BCP is achieved by combining hydroxyl-terminated poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS-OH) brush surfaces with solvent vapor annealing. As an alternative to standard brush chemistry, we report a simple method based on the use of surfaces functionalized with silane-based self-assembled monolayers (SAMs). A solution-based approach to SAM formation was adopted in this investigation. The influence of the SAM-modified surfaces upon BCP films was compared with polymer brush-based surfaces. The cylinder forming PS-b-PDMS BCP and PDMS-OH polymer brush were synthesized by sequential living anionic polymerization. It was observed that silane SAMs provided the appropriate surface chemistry which, when combined with solvent annealing, led to microphase segregation in the BCP. It was also demonstrated that orientation of the PDMS cylinders may be controlled by judicious choice of the appropriate silane. The PDMS patterns were successfully used as an on-chip etch mask to transfer the BCP pattern to underlying silicon substrate with sub-25 nm silicon nanoscale features. This alternative SAM/BCP approach to nanopattern formation shows promising results, pertinent in the field of nanotechnology, and with much potential for application, such as in the fabrication of nanoimprint lithography stamps, nanofluidic devices or in narrow and multilevel interconnected lines.

  10. Miktoarm star copolymers from D-(-)-salicin core aggregated into dandelion-like structures as anticancer drug delivery systems: synthesis, self-assembly and drug release.

    PubMed

    Mielańczyk, Anna; Odrobińska, Justyna; Grządka, Sebastian; Mielańczyk, Łukasz; Neugebauer, Dorota

    2016-12-30

    The β-glucoside-based heterofunctional initiator was used in the synthesis of well-defined eight-armed miktopolymers by sequential ring opening polymerization (ROP) of ε-caprolactone (CL) and atom transfer radical (co)polymerization (ATRP) of methyl methacrylate (MMA) and/or tert-butyl methacrylate (tBMA). Consequently, methacrylic acid (MAA) repeating units were introduced via selective cleavage of pendant tert-butyl protecting groups. Both the amphiphilic copolymers and miktoarm copolymers were self-assembled at 37°C and pH 7.4. The aggregates of miktoarm polymers were larger than that formed by polymethacrylate homoarm stars (≥250nm vs ≤200nm). The critical aggregation concentrations (CAC) of (mikto)stars were relatively low (0.006-0.411mg/mL) and decreased with the increase in MAA fraction content. Both MAA-based mikto- and homoarmed (co)polymers with shorter arms exhibited lower doxorubicin (DOX) loading capacity, whereas camptothecin (CPT) was encapsulated preferably by miktostars. The kinetic profiles of drug release showed that the rate of release was higher at acidic environment (pH 5.0) than in neutral pH. In the most cases the studied miktopolymer systems demonstrated the well-controlled delivery of the model anticancer drugs, which can be adjusted by structural parameters of polymeric carriers.

  11. The heat-chill method for preparation of self-assembled amphiphilic poly(ε-caprolactone)-poly(ethylene glycol) block copolymer based micellar nanoparticles for drug delivery.

    PubMed

    Payyappilly, Sanal Sebastian; Dhara, Santanu; Chattopadhyay, Santanu

    2014-04-07

    A new method is developed for preparation of amphiphilic block copolymer micellar nanoparticles and investigated as a delivery system for celecoxib, a hydrophobic model drug. Biodegradable block copolymers of poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) and poly(ε-caprolactone) (PCL) were synthesized by ring opening copolymerization and characterized thoroughly using FTIR, (1)H NMR and GPC. The block copolymer was dispersed in distilled water at 60 °C and then it was chilled in an ice bath for the preparation of the micellar nanoparticles. Polymers self-assembled to form micellar nanoparticles (<50 nm) owing to their amphiphilic nature. The prepared micellar nanoparticles were analyzed using HR-TEM, DLS and DSC. The cytotoxicity of the polymer micellar nanoparticles was investigated against HaCaT cell lines. The study of celecoxib release from the micellar nanoparticles was carried out to assess their suitability as a drug delivery vehicle. Addition of the drug to the system at low temperature is an added advantage of this method compared to the other temperature assisted nanoparticle preparation techniques. In a nutshell, polymer micellar nanoparticles prepared using the heat-chill method are believed to be promising for the controlled drug release system of labile drugs, which degrade in toxic organic solvents and at higher temperatures.

  12. Self-assembly of a new type of periodic surface structure in a copolymer by excimer laser irradiation above the ablation threshold

    SciTech Connect

    Dorronsoro, Carlos; Siegel, Jan; Bonse, Jörn

    2013-10-21

    We report self-assembly of periodic surface structures in a commercial block copolymer (BCP) (Filofocon A) upon irradiation with a few tens of excimer laser pulses (20 ns, 193 nm) at fluences above the ablation threshold. This new type of structures is characterized by much larger periods than those characteristic for Laser-Induced Periodic Surface Structures (LIPSS) and features nanochains instead of ripples. We find a period of 790 nm at 400 mJ/cm{sup 2}, scaling linearly with laser fluence up to a maximum of 1.0 μm. While an entangled random network of nanochains is produced for normal-incidence and non-polarized light, nanochain alignment can be achieved either by irradiation at an angle or by using linearly polarized light, forming a lamella-like structure. In both cases, the nanochains are aligned parallel to the penetrating polarization orientation and their period does not show a dependence on the angle of incidence, as opposed to the general behavior of standard LIPSS. Also, our results show that the chains are not formed by frozen capillary waves. In contrast, we show analogies of the nanochains produced to lamellar structures fabricated on a smaller scale in other BCP. We discuss the origin of the self-assembly process in terms of a combination of chemical (BCP), optical (surface scattering), and thermal (melting, coarsening, and ablation) effects.

  13. Synthesis and self-assembly of four-armed star copolymer based on poly(ethylene brassylate) hydrophobic block as potential drug carries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Jiucun; Li, Junzhi; Liu, Jianhua; Weng, Bo; Xu, Liqun

    2016-05-01

    A novel well-defined four-armed star poly(ethylene brassylate)- b-poly(poly(ethylene glycol)methyl ether methacrylate) (s-PEB- b-P(PEGMA)) was synthesized and self-assembled via the combination of ring-opening polymerization and reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer polymerization (RAFT) in this work. It proceeded firstly with the synthesis of hydrophobic four-armed star homopolymer of ethylene brassylate (EB) via ROP with organic catalyst, followed by the esterification reaction of s-PEB with chain transfer agent. Afterward, RAFT polymerization of PEGMA monomer was initialed using PEB-based macro-RAFT agent, resulting in the target amphiphilic four-armed star copolymer. The obtained s-PEB- b-P(PEGMA) can assemble into micelles with PEB segments as core and P(PEGMA) segments as shell in aqueous solution. The self-assembly behavior was studied by dynamic light scattering and transmission electron microscope. The micelles of s-PEB- b-P(PEGMA) exhibited higher loading capacity of the anticancer drug doxorubicin (DOX). The investigation of DOX release from the micelles demonstrated that the release rate of the hydrophobic drug could be effectively controlled.

  14. Glyco-Nanoparticles Made from Self-Assembly of Maltoheptaose-block-Poly(methyl methacrylate): Micelle, Reverse Micelle, and Encapsulation.

    PubMed

    Zepon, Karine M; Otsuka, Issei; Bouilhac, Cécile; Muniz, Edvani C; Soldi, Valdir; Borsali, Redouane

    2015-07-13

    The synthesis and the solution-state self-assembly of the "hybrid" diblock copolymers, maltoheptaose-block-poly(methyl methacrylate) (MH-b-PMMA), into large compound micelles (LCMs) and reverve micelle-type nanoparticles, are reported in this paper. The copolymers were self-assembled in water and acetone by direct dissolution method, and the morphologies of the nanoparticles were investigated by dynamic light scattering (DLS), nanoparticle tracking analysis (NTA), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), atomic force microscopy (AFM), proton nuclear magnetic resonance ((1)H NMR), and fluorescence spectroscopy as a function of the volume fraction of the copolymer hydrophobic block, copolymer concentration, stirring speed, and solvent polarity. The DLS measurements and TEM images showed that the hydrodynamic radius (Rh) of the LCMs obtained in water increases with the copolymer concentration. Apart from that, increasing the stirring speed leads to polydispersed aggregations of the LCMs. On the other hand, in acetone, the copolymers self-assembled into reverse micelle-type nanoparticles having Rh values of about 6 nm and micellar aggregates, as revealed the results obtained from DLS, AFM, and (1)H NMR analyses. The variation in micellar structure, that is, conformational inversion from LCMs to reverse micelle-type structures in response to polarity of the solvent, was investigated by apparent water contact angle (WCA) and (1)H NMR analyses. This conformational inversion of the nanoparticles was further confirmed by encapsulation and release of hydrophobic guest molecule, Nile red, characterized by fluorescence spectroscopy.

  15. Mesoporous Bragg reflectors: block-copolymer self-assembly leads to building blocks with well defined continuous pores and high control over optical properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guldin, S.; Kolle, M.; Stefik, M.; Wiesner, U.; Steiner, U.

    2011-09-01

    Mesoporous distributed Bragg re ectors (MDBRs) exhibit porosity on the sub-optical length scale. This makes them ideally suited as sensing platforms in biology and chemistry as well as for light management in optoelectronic devices. Here we present a new fast forward route for the fabrication of MDBRs which relies on the self-assembling properties of the block copolymer poly(isoprene-block-ethylene oxide) (PI-b-PEO) in combination with sol-gel chemistry. The interplay between structure directing organic host and co-assembled inorganic guest allows the ne tuning of refractive index in the outcome material. The refractive index dierence between the high and low porosity layer can be as high as 0.4, with the optical interfaces being well dened. Following a 30 min annealing protocol after each layer deposition enables the fast and reliable stacking of MDBRs which exhibit a continuous TiO2 network with large accessible pores and high optical quality.

  16. Imprint directed self-assembly of cylinder-forming Si-containing block copolymer for 6nm half-pitch line patterning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xiao, Shuaigang; Yang, XiaoMin; Hsu, Yautzong; Lee, Kim Y.; Kuo, David

    2015-03-01

    A new imprint directed self-assembly (DSA) route is developed for creating high resolution line patterns consisting of in-plane polystyrene-block-polydimethylsiloxane (PS-b- PDMS) cylinders. Resist line prepatterns are prepared by nanoimprint and trimmed by oxygen plasma to proper feature geometry and dimension. Registered block copolymer line patterns with exceptional long-range order are generated after DSA then, with the smallest half-pitch of 6 nm or so. Excellent stretching capability of PS-b-PDMS polymer chains indicates a broad process window for DSA. Initial pattern transfer results at 16.5 nm pitch imply the potential of this approach for future nanodevice fabrication at ultra-high pattern resolution.

  17. Polymer adsorption-driven self-assembly of nanostructures.

    PubMed

    Chakraborty, A K; Golumbfskie, A J

    2001-01-01

    Driven by prospective applications, there is much interest in developing materials that can perform specific functions in response to external conditions. One way to design such materials is to create systems which, in response to external inputs, can self-assemble to form structures that are functionally useful. This review focuses on the principles that can be employed to design macromolecules that when presented with an appropriate two-dimensional surface, will self-assemble to form nanostructures that may be functionally useful. We discuss three specific examples: (a) biomimetic recognition between polymers and patterned surfaces. (b) control and manipulation of nanomechanical motion generated by biopolymer adsorption and binding, and (c) creation of patterned nanostructuctures by exposing molten diblock copolymers to patterned surfaces. The discussion serves to illustrate how polymer sequence can be manipulated to affect self-assembly characteristics near adsorbing surfaces. The focus of this review is on theoretical and computational work aimed toward elucidating the principles underlying the phenomena pertinent to the three topics noted above. However, synergistic experiments are also described in the appropriate context.

  18. High Efficiency Photovoltaic Devices Fabricated from Self-Assemble Block Insulating-Conducting Copolymer Containing Semiconducting Nanoparticles

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2005-12-14

    effectively increase quenching of the photoluminescence. The 3nm x 30nm TiO2 nanorods were synthesized by modified sol - gel method under low temperature...a synthetic route for preparing a novel hybrid materials of poly(3-hexylthiophene)/D-A linker/ TiO2 . The chemical structure of the D-A linker which...polymerizable thiophene ring. After the formation of self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) of linker on TiO2 surface, the terminal thiophene ring in the linker

  19. Bacterial resistance of self-assembled surfaces using PPOm-b-PSBMAn zwitterionic copolymer - concomitant effects of surface topography and surface chemistry on attachment of live bacteria.

    PubMed

    Hsiao, Sheng-Wen; Venault, Antoine; Yang, Hui-Shan; Chang, Yung

    2014-06-01

    Three well-defined diblock copolymers made of poly(sulfobetaine methacrylate) (poly(SBMA)) and poly(propylene oxide) (PPO) groups were synthesized by atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) method. They were physically adsorbed onto three types of surfaces having different topography, including smooth flat surface, convex surface, and indented surface. Chemical state of surfaces was characterized by XPS while the various topographies were examined by SEM and AFM. Hydrophilicity of surfaces was dependent on both the surface chemistry and the surface topography, suggesting that orientation of copolymer brushes can be tuned in the design of surfaces aimed at resisting bacterial attachment. Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus epidermidis, Streptococcus mutans and Escherichia coli with green fluorescent protein (E. coli GFP) were used in bacterial tests to assess the resistance to bacterial attachment of poly(SBMA)-covered surfaces. Results highlighted a drastic improvement of resistance to bacterial adhesion with the increasing of poly(SBMA) to PPO ratio, as well as an important effect of surface topography. The chemical effect was directly related to the length of the hydrophilic moieties. When longer, more water could be entrapped, leading to improved anti-bacterial properties. The physical effect impacted on the orientation of the copolymer brushes, as well as on the surface contact area available. Convex surfaces as well as indented surfaces wafer presented the best resistance to bacterial adhesion. Indeed, bacterial attachment was more importantly reduced on these surfaces compared with smooth surfaces. It was explained by the non-orthogonal orientation of copolymer brushes, resulting in a more efficient surface coverage of zwitterionic molecules. This work suggests that not only the control of surface chemistry is essential in the preparation of surfaces resisting bacterial attachment, but also the control of surface topography and orientation of antifouling

  20. Morphological control via chemical and shear forces in block copolymer self-assembly in the lab-on-chip.

    PubMed

    Wang, Chih-Wei; Sinton, David; Moffitt, Matthew G

    2013-02-26

    We investigate the effects of variation in chemical conditions (solvent composition, water content, polymer concentration, and added salt) on the morphologies formed by PS-b-PAA in DMF/dioxane/water mixtures in a two-phase gas-liquid segmented microfluidic reactor. The differences in morphologies between off-chip and on-chip self-assembly and on-chip morphological trends for different chemical conditions are explained by the interplay of top-down shear effects (coalescence and breakup) and bottom-up chemical forces. Using off-chip morphology results, we construct a water content-solvent composition phase diagram showing disordered, sphere, cylinder, and vesicle regions. On-chip morphologies are found to deviate from off-chip morphologies by three identified shear-induced paths: 1) sphere-to-cylinder, and 2) sphere-to-vesicle transitions, both via shear-induced coalescence when initial micelle sizes are small, and 3) cylinder-to-sphere transitions via shear-induced breakup when initial micelle sizes are large (high capillary number conditions). These pathways contribute to the generation of large extended bilayer aggregates uniquely on-chip, at either increased polymer or salt concentrations. Collectively these results demonstrate the broad utility of top-down directed molecular self-assembly in conjunction with chemical forces to control morphology and size of polymer colloids at the nanoscale.

  1. Non-Equilibrium Dynamics of Vesicles and Micelles by Self-Assembly of Block Copolymers with Double Thermoresponsivity

    SciTech Connect

    Tang, Yu-Hang; Li, Zhen; Li, Xuejin; Deng, Mingge; Karniadakis, George Em

    2016-04-12

    We present a mesoscopic simulation study of doubly thermoresponsive self-assemblies, revealing previously unknown dynamic behavior and proving experimental hypotheses. By explicitly modeling internal energy as a degree of freedom of coarse-grained particles, we simulated the thermally induced self assembly process triggered by the evolution of temperature over time and space. We found that both external and intrinsic factors are responsible for altering the assembly pathway of thermoresponsive micelles and hence determining the final aggregate morphology. We identified a frequency regime where thermoresponsive unilamellar vesicles can sustain repeated heating cooling cycles in a thermal loading test, and we quantified the collapse probability and half-life of the vesicles under frequencies that cause vesicle destruction. Two molecular movement modes dominate, namely flip and slip, in thermoresponsive bilayer membranes during the inversion of composition. We demonstrated that doubly thermoresponsive micelles and vesicles, as potential drug delivery vehicles, exhibit distinct hydrodynamic behavior when flowing through capillaries whose temperature spans across the inversion temperature of the carriers.

  2. Self-assembled micelles based on pH-sensitive PAE-g-MPEG-cholesterol block copolymer for anticancer drug delivery

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Can Yang; Xiong, Di; Sun, Yao; Zhao, Bin; Lin, Wen Jing; Zhang, Li Juan

    2014-01-01

    A novel amphiphilic triblock pH-sensitive poly(β-amino ester)-g-poly(ethylene glycol) methyl ether-cholesterol (PAE-g-MPEG-Chol) was designed and synthesized via the Michael-type step polymerization and esterification condensation method. The synthesized copolymer was determined with proton nuclear magnetic resonance and gel permeation chromatography. The grafting percentages of MPEG and cholesterol were determined as 10.93% and 62.02%, calculated from the area of the characteristic peaks, respectively. The amphiphilic copolymer was confirmed to self-assemble into core/shell micelles in aqueous solution at low concentrations. The critical micelle concentrations were 6.92 and 15.14 mg/L at pH of 7.4 and 6.0, respectively, obviously influenced by the changes of pH values. The solubility of pH-responsive PAE segment could be transformed depending on the different values of pH because of protonation–deprotonation of the amino groups, resulting in pH sensitivity of the copolymer. The average particle size of micelles increased from 125 nm to 165 nm with the pH decreasing, and the zeta potential was also significantly changed. Doxorubicin (DOX) was entrapped into the polymeric micelles with a high drug loading level. The in vitro DOX release from the micelles was distinctly enhanced with the pH decreasing from 7.4 to 6.0. Toxicity testing proved that the DOX-loaded micelles exhibited high cytotoxicity in HepG2 cells, whereas the copolymer showed low toxicity. The results demonstrated how pH-sensitive PAE-g-MPEG-Chol micelles were proved to be a potential vector in hydrophobic drug delivery for tumor therapy. PMID:25364250

  3. bFGF interaction and in vivo angiogenesis inhibition by self-assembling sulfonic acid-based copolymers.

    PubMed

    García-Fernández, L; Aguilar, M R; Ochoa-Callejero, L; Abradelo, C; Martínez, A; San Román, J

    2012-01-01

    The antiangiogenic activity of different families of biocompatible and non-toxic polymer drugs based on 2-acrylamido-2-methylpropane sulfonic acid (AMPS) or polymethacrylic derivatives of 5-aminonaphthalen sulfonic acid (MANSA) is analyzed using directed in vivo angiogenesis assay and correlated with in vitro results. These active compounds were copolymerized with butylacrylate (BA) and N-vinylpyrrolidone in order to obtain two families of copolymers with different properties in aqueous media. The most hydrophobic copolymers poly(BA-co-MANSA) and poly(BA-co-AMPS) formed amphiphilic copolymers and presented micellar morphology in aqueous media. This supramolecular organization of the copolymers had a clear effect on bioactivity. Poly(BA-co-MANSA) copolymers showed the best antiangiogenic activity and very low toxicity at relatively low dose, with the possibility to be injected directly in the solid tumors alone or in combination with other therapeutic agents such as anti-VEGF drugs. The obtained results demonstrate that not only the chemical structure but also the supramolecular organization of the macromolecules plays a key role in the anti-angiogenic activity of these active polymers.

  4. Asymmetric block copolymers for supramolecular templating of inorganic nanospace materials.

    PubMed

    Bastakoti, Bishnu Prasad; Li, Yunqi; Kimura, Tatsuo; Yamauchi, Yusuke

    2015-05-06

    This review focuses on polymeric micelles consisting of asymmetric block copolymers as designed templates for several inorganic nanospace materials with a wide variety of compositions. The presence of chemically distinct domains of asymmetric triblock and diblock copolymers provide self-assemblies with more diverse morphological and functional features than those constructed by EOn POm EOn type symmetric triblock copolymers, thereby affording well-designed nanospace materials. This strategy can produce unprecedented nanospace materials, which are very difficult to prepare through other conventional organic templating approaches. Here, the recent development on the synthesis of inorganic nanospace materials are mainly focused on, such as hollow spheres, tubes, and porous oxides, using asymmetric triblock copolymers.

  5. Photo-responsive and thermoreversible networks from the self-assembly of azobenzene-containing liquid crystal triblock copolymers (Conference Presentation)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kurji, Zuleikha; Kornfield, Julia A.; Kuzyk, Mark G.

    2016-09-01

    We report the synthesis of azobenzene-containing coil-liquid crystal-coil triblock copolymers that can serve as mechano-optic actuators for applications that include non-invasively steering fiber optics. The coil (polystyrene) end-blocks phase segregate from the liquid crystal midblock forming of uniform and uniformly-spaced physical crosslinks, resulting in highly reproducible and thermoreversible networks by self-assembly. These polymers are elastic in the melt (at room temperature) and can be easily spun, coated or molded. Mechanical stretching results in a temporary monodomain alignment. Starting from identical triblock prepolymers (with polystyerene end blocks and 1,2-polybutadiene midblocks), a matched pair (azobenzene-containing, and non-azobenzene-containing) of liquid crystal triblock copolymers was synthesized. These triblocks were then be blended to prepare a series of elastomers with 0 to 5% azobenzene groups, while matching in nearly all other physical properties (cross-link density, modulus, birefringence, etc.), allowing the effect of concentration of photo-responsive groups to be unambiguously determined. Results will be presented that demonstrate this approach to independent control of optical density and photo-mechanical sensitivity.

  6. Nanoimprint-assisted directed self-assembly of low-molecular weight block copolymers: a route for 3D and multilevel nanostructures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simão, C.; Khunsin, W.; Kehagias, N.; Francone, A.; Zelsmann, M.; Morris, M. A.; Sotomayor Torres, C. M.

    2014-06-01

    Multilevel controllable nanoimprint driven molecular orientation has been obtained in thin films of block copolymer polystyrene-b-polyethylene oxide( PS-b-PEO) by means of solvent vapours assisted nanoimprint lithography (SAIL). The NIL setup using solvent vapours was capable of imprinting nanoscale features over a large area and simultaneously annealing PS-b-PEO thin films. A line pattern stamp was replicated in the BCP film in over a large area with a high resolution registry, and was also observed that the PS-b-PEO film exhibited microphase segregation in the residual layer exhibits a nanodot array from showing hexagonally packed PEO dots in the PS matrix, with a diameter of 20 nm with 40 nm pitch. The order of the hexagonally arranged nanodot lattice seen in the nanodots array was quantified from SEM images using by the opposite partner method from SEM images analysis and compared with to conventionally solvent annealed BCP films, demonstrating an improvement of the ordering of up to 50%. Grazing-incidence small-angle X-ray scattering (GISAXS) study demonstrates the excellent fidelity of the pattern transfer and confirms the periodicity of the BCP in the mesas. In addition, applying the SAIL methodology to BCP thin films in nanopatterned silsequioxane substrates, it was possible to obtain multilevel structures decorated with the BCP microphase segregation. The SAIL technique is a versatile and robust platform to obtain complex high density periodic nanostructures, particularly for second generation block copolymers directed self-assembly.

  7. A study on the stability and enzymatic activity of yeast alcohol dehydrogenase in presence of the self-assembling block copolymer Poloxamer 407.

    PubMed

    Pucciarelli, Stefania; Bonacucina, Giulia; Bernabucci, Franco; Cespi, Marco; Mencarelli, Giovanna; De Fronzo, Giusi Serena; Natalini, Paolo; Palmieri, Giovanni Filippo

    2012-05-01

    Yeast alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) is an enzyme widely studied for biotechnological applications due to its involvement in fermentation industry, and various attempts to improve its catalytic properties and its thermal stability have been carried out. In this paper, the influence of a block copolymer (Poloxamer 407) on ADH enzymatic activity and thermal behaviour has been studied in order to get new insights about the use of poloxamers in formulation of sustained release systems for therapeutic proteins. Poloxamer 407 has the ability to form micelles and gel due to its self-assembling and thermoresponsive properties. The effect of the copolymer towards thermal stress and pH changes, which often reduce enzymes activity it has been investigated by means of enzymatic assays and differential scanning calorimetry. Results showed that at pH 9.1 and 7.3, the Poloxamer in the form of unimeric, micellar and gel state is able to effectively preserve the enzyme from thermoinactivation. In addition by calorimetric data Poloxamer 407 has showed an effect in preserving ADH from aggregation at pH 7.3. In conclusion, Poloxamer 407 seems to be very effective in protecting ADH from stress related events, like alkaline inactivation and aggregation.

  8. Collective dynamics and self-diffusion in a diblock copolymer melt in the body-centered cubic phase.

    PubMed

    Papadakis, C M; Rittig, F; Almdal, K; Mortensen, K; Stĕpánek, P

    2004-12-01

    The structure and dynamics of a strongly asymmetric poly(ethylene propylene)-poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PEP-PDMS) diblock copolymer in the melt have been studied over a wide temperature range. Small-angle neutron scattering reveals that the sample exhibits two stable phases in this temperature range: Above the order-to-disorder transition temperature, it is disordered, whereas the domain structure is body-centered cubic (bcc) below, being stable down to the lowest temperatures measured. In the disordered state, dynamic light scattering (DLS) in the polarized geometry reveals the heterogeneity mode and the cluster mode. In the bcc phase, the PEP and the PDMS blocks form the micellar cores and the matrix, respectively. Here, two modes are observed in DLS, and the diffusion coefficients measured using pulsed field gradient (PFG) NMR are broadly distributed with the most probable diffusion coefficient coinciding with the slow DLS mode. We attribute the fast process in the bcc state to concentration fluctuations of the micellar cores (PEP), relaxing by mutual diffusion of the micelles with copolymers dissolved in the PDMS matrix. The slower process in the bcc state is ascribed to activated long-range self-diffusion of single copolymers from micelle to micelle through the PDMS matrix. This assignment is corroborated by the good coincidence of the reduced diffusivities with the ones from the literature. However, this mode may also be assigned to the rearrangement of entire micelles.

  9. 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.

  10. Effects of Bile Salt Sodium Glycodeoxycholate on the Self-Assembly of PEO-PPO-PEO Triblock Copolymer P123 in Aqueous Solution.

    PubMed

    Bayati, Solmaz; Galantini, Luciano; Knudsen, Kenneth D; Schillén, Karin

    2015-12-22

    A comprehensive experimental study on the interaction between the PEO-PPO-PEO block copolymer P123 (EO20PO68EO20) and the anionic bile salt sodium glycodeoxycholate (NaGDC) in water has been performed. The work was aimed at investigating the suitability of using P123 as bile salt sequestrant beside the fundamental aspects of PEO-PPO-PEO block copolymer-bile salt interactions. Various experimental techniques including dynamic and static light scattering, small-angle X-ray scattering, and differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) were employed in combination with electrophoretic mobility measurements. The system was investigated at a constant P123 concentration of 1.74 mM and with varying bile salt concentrations up to approximately 250 mM NaGDC (or a molar ratio n(NaGDC)/n(P123) = 144). In the mixed P123-NaGDC solutions, the endothermic process related to the self-assembly of P123 was observed to gradually decrease in enthalpy and shift to higher temperatures upon progressive addition of NaGDC. To explain this effect, the formation of NaGDC micelles carrying partly dehydrated P123 unimers was proposed and translated into a stoichiometric model, which was able to fit the experimental DSC data. In the mixtures at low molar ratios, NaGDC monomers associated with the P123 micelle forming a charged "P123 micelle-NaGDC" complex with a dehydrated PPO core. These complexes disintegrated upon increasing NaGDC concentration to form small "NaGDC-P123" complexes visualized as bile salt micelles including one or a few P123 copolymer chains.

  11. Self-assembled PEG-b-PDPA-b-PGEM copolymer nanoparticles as protein antigen delivery vehicles to dendritic cells: preparation, characterization and cellular uptake

    PubMed Central

    Li, Pan; Zhou, Junhui; Huang, Pingsheng; Zhang, Chuangnian; Wang, Weiwei; Li, Chen; Kong, Deling

    2017-01-01

    Antigen uptake by dendritic cells (DCs) is a key step for initiating antigen-specific T cell immunity. In the present study, novel synthetic polymeric nanoparticles were prepared as antigen delivery vehicles to improve the antigen uptake by DCs. Well-defined cationic and acid-responsive copolymers, monomethoxy poly(ethylene glycol)-block-poly(2-(diisopropyl amino) ethyl methacrylate)-block-poly(2-(guanidyl) ethyl methacrylate) (mPEG-b-PDPA-b-PGEM, PEDG) were synthesized by reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer polymerization of 2-(diisopropylamino)ethyl methacrylate) and N-(tert-butoxycarbonyl) amino ethyl methacrylate monomers, followed by deprotection of tert-butyl protective groups and guanidinylation of obtained primary amines. 1H NMR, 13C NMR and GPC results indicated the successful synthesis of well-defined PEDG copolymers. PEDG copolymers could self-assemble into nanoparticles in aqueous solution, which were of cationic surface charges and showed acid-triggered disassembly contributed by PGEM and PDPA moieties, respectively. Significantly, PEDG nanoparticles could effectively condense with negatively charged model antigen ovalbumin (OVA) to form OVA/PEDG nanoparticle formulations with no influence on its secondary and tertiary structures demonstrating by far-UV circular dichroism and UV–vis spectra. In vitro antigen cellular uptake by bone marrow DCs (BMDCs) indicated using PEDG nanoparticles as antigen delivery vehicles could significantly improve the antigen uptake efficiency of OVA compared with free OVA or the commercialized Alum adjuvant. Moreover, as the surface cationic charges of OVA/PEDG nanoparticle formulations reduced, the uptake efficiency decreased correspondingly. Collectively, our work suggests that guanidinylated, cationic and acid-responsive PEDG nanoparticles represent a new kind of promising antigen delivery vehicle to DCs and hold great potential to serve as immunoadjuvants in the development of vaccines. PMID:28149525

  12. 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.

  13. Effect of χN and underlayer composition on self-assembly of thin films of block copolymers with energy asymmetric block

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lawson, Richard A.; Peters, Andrew J.; Nation, Benjamin D.; Ludovice, Peter J.; Henderson, Clifford L.

    2015-03-01

    Many high χ block copolymer (BCP) systems often have one block which shows a strong preference to wet the free interface at the top of the film. This property makes it difficult to form vertically aligned lamellae which are desired for many directed self-assembly (DSA) applications. To better understand this behavior, simulations of thin films of BCPs were carried out using a coarse-grained molecular dynamics (MD) model. The property that leads one block to preferentially wet the free interface over the other is a difference in cohesive energy density (CED) between the two blocks. Our simulation allows for the systematic variation in the CED of each block to investigate how the magnitude of these differences affects self-assembly behavior. BCPs with no CED differences between the blocks show large ranges of underlayer compositions where vertical lamellae will form that are minimally affected by changing χ of the BCP. The range where vertical lamellae will form can be thought of as a process window. Increasing the CED asymmetry of the BCP (i.e. the difference in CED between blocks) causes a reduction in the process window and also causes a shift in the underlayer composition that is the center of the window. Increasing χ increases the process window for vertical lamellae in CED asymmetric systems. This behavior is determined by the trade-off in energy due to three interfacial interactions: A-B interface, film-free surface interface, and film-underlayer interface. At the limits of very high CED asymmetry and low χ, there may be no underlayer compositions where vertical lamellae will form. A simplified model was also developed that can accurately predict these process windows for different CED asymmetry and χ values on the order of seconds and minutes compared to hours and days for the full simulation.

  14. Surface-enhanced Raman imaging of red blood cell membrane with highly uniform active substrates obtained using block copolymers self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zito, Gianluigi; Malafronte, Anna; Dochshanov, Alden; Rusciano, Giulia; Auriemma, Finizia; Pesce, Giuseppe; De Rosa, Claudio; Sasso, Antonio

    2013-05-01

    In this communication, we discuss the application of ordered, ultrahigh-density templates of nano-textured Ag-particles obtained by self-assembling of inorganic-containing polystyrene-block-poly(4-vinylpyridine) copolymer (PS-b-P4VP) micelles, for the spectroscopic surface-enhanced Raman imaging in-vitro of red blood cells (RBCs) and its capability to identify the vibrational fingerprint of the plasma membrane of the cell physisorbed to the SERS substrate. Hexagonal arrays of PS-b-P4VP micelles, with selective inclusion of Ag nanoparticles (NPs) in the polar core, prepared by in situ reduction of a suitable precursor, are obtained by polymer self-assembly upon fast solvent evaporation during spin coating on the supporting substrate. UV irradiation and/or plasma oxygen treatment remove the polymer matrix leaving immobilized nano-islands of Ag-NPs. Such a kind of SERS-active substrate consists of a reproducible and uniform twodimensional hexagonal array of silver clusters with a diameter ranging from 25 to 30 nm (single particles having typically diameters of 5 nm) and nano-island gap distances of the order of 5-8 nm on silicon and 15 nm on glass , while giving rise to high enhancement factors and addressing the issue of SERS reproducibility. The basic substrate supporting the plasmonic coating used in this work is either of silicon or glass. This last allows working in back scattering configuration permitting real time monitoring, via microscopy, of the RBCs on which Raman measurements are being carried out. The template is thus applied for surface-enhanced Raman analysis of the red blood cell (RBC) membrane in confocal micro-Raman configuration demonstrating to have SERS imaging potential thanks to the uniformity of the nano-textured substrate. The first experimental evidence of SERS imaging of a red blood cell membrane in-vitro is demonstrated.

  15. Fabrication of composite thin films with microstructures of honeycomb, foam, and nanosphere arrays through adsorption and self-assembly of block copolymers at the liquid/liquid interface.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yanan; Chen, Lifang; Geng, Yuanyuan; Lee, Yong-Ill; Li, Ying; Hao, Jingcheng; Liu, Hong-Guo

    2013-10-01

    The adsorption and self-organization behaviors of two kinds of block copolymers, polystyrene-block-poly(4-vinylpyridine) (PS-b-P4VP) and poly(4-vinylpyridine)-block-polystyrene-block-poly(4-vinylpyridine) (P4VP-b-PS-b-P4VP), at planar liquid/liquid interfaces were investigated. A gel film decorating with honeycomb-like microstructures forms at the liquid/liquid interface between PS-b-P4VP chloroform solution and chloroauric acid aqueous solution. However, foam films were developed when the chloroauric acid aqueous solution was replaced by a chloroplatinic acid solution or a silver nitrate solution. Furthermore, a free-standing film containing the ordered arrays of nanospheres appeared at the liquid/liquid interface between P4VP-b-PS-b-P4VP chloroform solution and chloroauric acid aqueous solution. The formation of these microstructures was attributed to the adsorption of polymer molecules, combining with inorganic ions and the self-assembly of the composite species at the interface. The doped metal ions and complex ions were transformed to metal nanoparticles after further treatment. This is a facile and convenient method to prepare polymer/inorganic nanoparticle composites. These results also indicate the great influences of the polymer structures and the inorganic species in the aqueous phases on the self-assembly behaviors of the polymers at the interfaces, the final morphology, and structure of the composites. In addition, the formed thin composite films doped with well-dispersed, homogeneous small noble metal nanoparticles exhibit great and durable catalytic activities for the reduction of 4-nitrophenol (4-NP) by potassium borohydride.

  16. Complex High-Aspect-Ratio Metal Nanostructures by Secondary Sputtering Combined with Block Copolymer Self-Assembly.

    PubMed

    Jeon, Hwan-Jin; Kim, Ju Young; Jung, Woo-Bin; Jeong, Hyeon-Su; Kim, Yun Ho; Shin, Dong Ok; Jeong, Seong-Jun; Shin, Jonghwa; Kim, Sang Ouk; Jung, Hee-Tae

    2016-10-01

    High-resolution (10 nm), high-areal density, high-aspect ratio (>5), and morphologically complex nanopatterns are fabricated from a single conventional block copolymer (BCP) structure with a 70 nm scale resolution and an aspect ratio of 1, through the secondary-sputtering phenomenon during the Ar-ion-bombardment process. This approach provides a foundation for the design of new routes to BCP lithography.

  17. Self-assembled structures of hydrogen-bonded poly(vinyl chloride-g-4-vinyl pyridine) graft copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koh, Joo Hwan; Seo, Jin Ah; Koh, Jong Kwan; Kim, Jong Hak

    2010-09-01

    An amphiphilic graft copolymer of poly(vinyl chloride-graft-4-vinyl pyridine), i.e., PVC-g-P4VP was synthesized via atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) and modified by introducing 1,5-dihydroxynaphthalene (DHN) as a hydrogen bonding donor to form hydrogen-bonded macromolecules. The PVC-g-P4VP graft copolymer prepared from a selective solvent for PVC, i.e., tetrahydrofuran (THF) exhibited a well-organized micellar morphology consisting of a P4VP core and a PVC corona. However, the graft copolymer prepared from a good solvent for both domains, i.e., N, N-dimethylformamide (DMF) showed a less-organized, random microphase-separated morphology. Upon the introduction of DHN, a more spherical morphology and a more-organized 'bicontinuous-like' morphology was observed in THF and DMF, respectively. This results from strong segregation between the two domains due to the enhanced interfacial energy by DHN. When DHN was removed by methanol, nanoporous films with versatile pore sizes and shapes were generated.

  18. In-situ crosslinkable and self-assembling elastin-like polypeptide block copolymers for cartilage tissue repair

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lim, Dong Woo

    This work describes the development of genetically engineered elastin-like polypeptide (ELP) block copolymers as in-situ gelling scaffolds for cartilage tissue repair. The central hypothesis underlying this work is that ELP based biopolymers can be exploited as injectable biomaterials by rapid chemical crosslinking. To prove this, gene libraries encoding ELP having different molecular weights and amino acid sequences, and ELP block copolymers composed of various ELP blocks having diverse amino acid composition, length, and phase transition behavior were synthesized by recursive directional ligation, expressed in E. Coli and purified by inverse transition cycling. Mannich-type condensation of hydroxymethylphosphines (HMPs) with primary- and secondary-amines of amino acids was developed as a new crosslinking method of polypeptides. Chemically crosslinked ELP hydrogels were formed rapidly in an aqueous solution by reaction of ELPs containing periodic lysine residues with HMPs. The crosslinking density and mechanical property of the ELP hydrogels were controlled at the sequence level by varying the Lys density in ELPs composed of mono-block as well as by segregation of the Lys residues within specific blocks of tri-block architectures. Fibroblasts embedded in ELP hydrogels survived the crosslinking process and were viable after in vitro culture for at least 3 days. The DNA content of fibroblasts within the tri-block gels was significantly higher than that in the mono-block gels at day 3. These results suggest that the HMP crosslinked ELP block copolymer hydrogels show finely tuned mechanical properties and different microenvironments for cell viability as well as potential as in-situ crosslinkable biopolymers for tissue repair applications with load-bearing environments. As an alternative, rheological behavior of the ELP block copolymers and ELP-grafted hyaluronic acids (HAs) as artificial extracellular matrices (ECMs) showed that they were thermally aggregated into

  19. Methoxypolyethylene glycol-block-polycaprolactone diblock copolymers reduce P-glycoprotein efflux in the absence of a membrane fluidization effect while stimulating P-glycoprotein ATPase activity.

    PubMed

    Zastre, Jason; Jackson, John K; Wong, Wesley; Burt, Helen M

    2007-04-01

    We have previously shown that amphiphilic diblock copolymers composed of methoxypolyethylene glycol-b-polycaprolactone (MePEG-b-PCL) increased the cellular accumulation and reduced the basolateral to apical flux of the P-glycoprotein substrate, rhodamine 123 (R-123) in caco-2 cells. The purpose of this study was to investigate membrane perturbation effects of MePEG-b-PCL diblock copolymers with erythrocyte membranes and caco-2 cells and the effect on P-gp ATPase activity. The diblock copolymer MePEG(17)-b-PCL(5) induced increasing erythrocyte hemolysis at concentrations which correlated with increasing accumulation of R-123 into caco-2 cells. However, no increase in cellular accumulation of R-123 by non-P-gp expressing cells was observed, suggesting that diblock did not enhance the transmembrane passive diffusion of R-123, but that the accumulation enhancement effect of the diblock in caco-2 cells was likely mediated primarily via P-gp inhibition. Fluorescence anisotropy measurements of membrane fluidity and P-gp ATPase activity demonstrated that MePEG(17)-b-PCL(5) decreased caco-2 membrane fluidity while stimulating ATPase activity approximately threefold at concentrations that maximally enhanced R-123 caco-2 accumulation. These results suggest that inhibition of P-gp efflux by MePEG(17)-b-PCL(5) does not appear to be related to increases in membrane fluidity or through inhibition in P-gp ATPase activities, which are two commonly reported cellular effects for P-gp inhibition mediated by surfactants.

  20. A Robust Cross-Linking Strategy for Block Copolymer Worms Prepared via Polymerization-Induced Self-Assembly

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    A poly(glycerol monomethacrylate) (PGMA) chain transfer agent is chain-extended by reversible addition–fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) statistical copolymerization of 2-hydroxypropyl methacrylate (HPMA) with glycidyl methacrylate (GlyMA) in concentrated aqueous solution via polymerization-induced self-assembly (PISA). A series of five free-standing worm gels is prepared by fixing the overall degree of polymerization of the core-forming block at 144 while varying its GlyMA content from 0 to 20 mol %. 1H NMR kinetics indicated that GlyMA is consumed much faster than HPMA, producing a GlyMA-rich sequence close to the PGMA stabilizer block. Temperature-dependent oscillatory rheological studies indicate that increasing the GlyMA content leads to progressively less thermoresponsive worm gels, with no degelation on cooling being observed for worms containing 20 mol % GlyMA. The epoxy groups in the GlyMA residues can be ring-opened using 3-aminopropyltriethoxysilane (APTES) in order to prepare core cross-linked worms via hydrolysis-condensation with the siloxane groups and/or hydroxyl groups on the HPMA residues. Perhaps surprisingly, 1H NMR analysis indicates that the epoxy–amine reaction and the intermolecular cross-linking occur on similar time scales. Cross-linking leads to stiffer worm gels that do not undergo degelation upon cooling. Dynamic light scattering studies and TEM analyses conducted on linear worms exposed to either methanol (a good solvent for both blocks) or anionic surfactant result in immediate worm dissociation. In contrast, cross-linked worms remain intact under such conditions, provided that the worm cores comprise at least 10 mol % GlyMA. PMID:27134311

  1. 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.

  2. Transparent nanostructured cellulose acetate films based on the self assembly of PEO-b-PPO-b-PEO block copolymer.

    PubMed

    Gutierrez, Junkal; Carrasco-Hernandez, Sheyla; Barud, Hernane S; Oliveira, Rafael L; Carvalho, Renata A; Amaral, André C; Tercjak, Agnieszka

    2017-06-01

    In this study fabrication and characterization of transparent nanostructured composite films based on cellulose triacetate (CTA) and poly(ethylene oxide)-b-poly(propylene oxide)-b-poly(ethylene oxide) (EPE) triblock copolymer were presented. The effect of the addition of EPE triblock copolymer on the thermal stability, morphology, and mechanical properties of cellulose triacetate films was investigated. The triblock EPE was chosen since PEO blocks interact favorably with CTA, whereas, PPO blocks remain immiscible which provokes a microphase separation. This allows to obtain EPE/CTA composite films with ordered microphase-separated structures where PPO spherical microdomains are well-dispersed in PEO/CTA matrix by simple solvent-evaporation process. During this process, PEO block chains selectively interact with CTA by strong interpolymer hydrogen-bonding while PPO block microseparated. The addition even 40wt% of EPE leads to nanostructured EPE/CTA composite. The cytotoxicity assay of CTA and EPE/CTA composite films confirm non-toxic character of designed transparent nanostructured composites based on sustainable matrices.

  3. Structural color-tunable mesoporous bragg stack layers based on graft copolymer self-assembly for high-efficiency solid-state dye-sensitized solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Chang Soo; Park, Jung Tae; Kim, Jong Hak

    2016-08-01

    We present a facile fabrication route for structural color-tunable mesoporous Bragg stack (BS) layers based on the self-assembly of a cost-effective graft copolymer. The mesoporous BS layers are prepared through the alternating deposition of organized mesoporous-TiO2 (OM-TiO2) and -SiO2 (OM-SiO2) films on the non-conducting side of the counter electrode in dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs). The OM layers with controlled porosity, pore size, and refractive index are templated with amphiphilic graft copolymers consisting of poly(vinyl chloride) backbones and poly(oxyethylene methacrylate) side chains, i.e., PVC-g-POEM. The morphology and properties of the structural color-tunable mesoporous BS-functionalized electrodes are characterized using energy filtered transmission electron microscopy (EF-TEM), field emission-scanning electron microscopy (FE-SEM), spectroscopic ellipsometry, and reflectance spectroscopy. The solid-state DSSCs (ssDSSCs) based on a structural color-tunable mesoporous BS counter electrode with a single-component solid electrolyte show an energy conversion efficiency (η) of 7.1%, which is much greater than that of conventional nanocrystalline TiO2-based cells and one of the highest values for N719 dye-based ssDSSCs. The enhancement of η is due to the enhancement of current density (Jsc), attributed to the improved light harvesting properties without considerable decrease in fill factor (FF) or open-circuit voltage (Voc), as confirmed by incident photon-to-electron conversion efficiency (IPCE) and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS).

  4. Adsorption of polymers, polymer blends and a diblock copolymer onto conducting polypyrrole. A study by surface analytical techniques

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chehimi, M. M.; Abel, M.-L.; Fricker, F.; Delamar, M.; Jada, A.; Brown, A. M.; Watts, J. F.

    1998-06-01

    Adsorption of PMMA and PVC, PMMA and PVC blends, and a diblock copolymer P(S/EO), onto polypyrrole (PPy) was monitored by XPS, ToF-SSIMS and inverse gas chromatography (IGC). It is shown that the solvent nature influences adsorption rate and the morphology of the coating. There is also evidence for PVC and PEO block-enrichment at the PPy-blend and PPy-P(S/EO) interfaces, respectively. L'adsorption de PMMA et PVC, de leurs mélanges (PMMA+PVC) et d'un copolymère à blocs (poly(styrène-b-oxyde d'éthylène), P(S/EO)) sur le polypyrrole (PPy) a été suivie par XPS, ToF-SSIMS et chromatographie inverse en phase gazeuse. Il est démontré que la nature du solvant influence la quantité de polymère adsorbé et la morphologie des revêtements. En outre, les interfaces PPy-(PMMA+PVC) et PPy-P(S/EO) sont riches respectivement en PVC et en blocs PEO.

  5. Preparation and solution behavior of a thermoresponsive diblock copolymer of poly(ethyl glycidyl ether) and poly(ethylene oxide).

    PubMed

    Ogura, Michihiro; Tokuda, Hiroyuki; Imabayashi, Shin-ichiro; Watanabe, Masayoshi

    2007-08-28

    A thermoresponsive diblock copolymer, poly(ethyl glycidyl ether)-block-poly(ethylene oxide) (PEGE-b-PEO), is synthesized by successive anionic ring-opening polymerization of ethyl glycidyl ether and ethylene oxide using 2-phenoxyethanol as a starting material, and its solution behavior is elucidated in water. In a dilute 1 wt % solution, the temperature-dependent alteration in the polymer hydrodynamic radius (RH) is measured in the temperature range between 5 and 45 degrees C by pulse-gradient spin-echo NMR and dynamic light scattering. The RH value increased with temperature in two steps, where the first step at 15 degrees C corresponds to the core-shell micelle formation and the second step at 40 degrees C corresponds to the aggregation of the core-shell micelles. The formation of the core-shell micelles is supported by the solubilization of a dye (1,6-diphenyl-1,3,5-hexatriene) in the hydrophobic core, which is recognized for a copolymer solution in the temperature range between 20 and 40 degrees C. In this temperature range, the core-shell micelles and the unimers coexist and the fraction of the former gradually increases with increasing temperature, suggesting equilibrium between the micelles and the unimers. In the concentrated regime (40 wt % solution), the solution forms a gel and the small-angle X-ray scattering measurements reveal the successive formation of hexagonal and lamellar liquid crystal phases with increasing temperature.

  6. Self-assembled poly(ε-caprolactone)-g-chondroitin sulfate copolymers as an intracellular doxorubicin delivery carrier against lung cancer cells

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Yue-Jin; Liu, Yu-Sheng; Yeh, Hsin-Hwa; Cheng, Tian-Lu; Wang, Li-Fang

    2012-01-01

    The aim of this study was to utilize self-assembled polycaprolactone (PCL)-grafted chondroitin sulfate (CS) as an anticancer drug carrier. We separately introduced double bonds to the hydrophobic PCL and the hydrophilic CS. The modified PCL was reacted with the modified CS through a radical reaction (CSMA-g-PCL). The copolymer without doxorubicin (DOX) was noncytotoxic in CRL-5802 and NCI-H358 cells at a concentration ranging from 5–1000 μg/mL and DOX-loaded CSMA-g-PCL (Micelle DOX) had the lowest inhibitory concentration of 50% cell growth values against the NCI-H358 cells among test samples. The cellular uptake of Micelle DOX into the cells was confirmed by flow cytometric data and confocal laser scanning microscopic images. The in vivo tumor-targeting efficacy of Micelle DOX was realized using an NCI-H358 xenograft nude mouse model. The mice administered with Micelle DOX showed suppressed growth of the NCI-H358 lung tumor compared with those administered with phosphate-buffered saline and free DOX. PMID:22904627

  7. A route for industry compatible directed self-assembly of high-chi PS-PDMS block copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Böhme, S.; Girardot, C.; Garnier, J.; Arias-Zapata, J.; Arnaud, S.; Tiron, R.; Marconot, O.; Buttard, D.; Zelsmann, M.

    2016-04-01

    In this work, we present completely industry adapted processes for high-chi PS-PDMS block copolymers. DSA was performed on trenches fabricated within standard photolithography stacks and pattern transfer was made by using etching processes similar to those used for gate etching in industry. We propose the alignment of two different PS-PDMS (45.5kg/mol, 16kg/mol) solely by thermal annealing. By adding plasticizer molecules in the high molecular weight BCP (45.5k), we have not only avoided solvent vapor annealing but also reduced significantly the processing time. The properties of the guiding lines and the quality of the final BCP hard mask (CD uniformity, LWR, LER) were investigated.

  8. Self-assembled biomimetic nanoreactors I: Polymeric template

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McTaggart, Matt; Malardier-Jugroot, Cecile; Jugroot, Manish

    2015-09-01

    The variety of nanoarchitectures made feasible by the self-assembly of alternating copolymers opens new avenues for biomimicry. Indeed, self-assembled structures allow the development of nanoreactors which combine the efficiency of high surface area metal active centres to the effect of confinement due to the very small cavities generated by the self-assembly process. A novel self-assembly of high molecular weight alternating copolymers is characterized in the present study. The self-assembly is shown to organize into nanosheets, providing a 2 nm hydrophobic cavity with a 1D confinement.

  9. Effect of temperature on the interfacial behavior of a polystyrene-b-poly(methyl methacrylate) diblock copolymer at the air/water interface.

    PubMed

    Seo, Yongsok; Cho, Chung Yeon; Hwangbo, Minyoung; Choi, Hyoung Jin; Hong, Soon Man

    2008-03-18

    Monolayers of a polystyrene-poly(methyl methacrylate) (PS-PMMA) diblock copolymer at the air-water interface were studied by measuring the surface pressure-area isotherms at several temperatures. Langmuir film balance experiments and atomic force microscopy showed that the diblock copolymer molecules formed surface micelles. In the plot of the surface pressure versus surface area per repeating unit, the monolayer changed from the gas phase to the liquid expanded phase at lower surface pressure for systems at low temperature compared to those at high temperature. In addition, a plateau, corresponding to the transition from the liquid expanded to liquid condensed phase, appeared in that plot at lower surface pressure for systems with a higher subphase (water) temperature. Hysteresis was observed in the compression-expansion cycle process. Increasing the subphase temperature alleviated this hyteresis gap, especially at low surface pressures. The minimum in the plot of the surface pressure versus surface area per repeating unit in the expansion process (which arises from the transition) and the transition plateau appeared more vividly at higher water temperature. These dynamic experimental results show that PS-PMMA diblock copolymers, in which both blocks are insoluble in water, do not form complicated entanglements in two-dimensional space. Although higher water temperature provided more entropy to the chains, and thus more conformational freedom, it did not change the surface morphology of the condensed film because both blocks of PS-PMMA are insoluble in water.

  10. Neutron reflectivity studies of the surface-induced ordering of diblock copolymer films

    SciTech Connect

    Anastasiadis, S.H.; Russell, T.P.; Satija, S.K.; Majkrzak, C.F.

    1989-04-17

    Neutron reflectivity from annealed thin films of the poly(styrene-b-deuterated methylmethacrylate), P(S-b-D-MMA), reveals the formation of a multilayered morphology parallel to the film surface. This multilayer forms so that PS locates, preferentially, at the air/copolymer and D-PMMA at the substrate/copolymer interfaces with layer thicknesses at these interfaces one-half that found in the bulk. P(D-S-b-MMA) of lower molecular weight shows the first evidence of surface-induced ordering of copolymers in the phase mixed state characterized by an exponentially damped cosine function.

  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

    2016-03-02

    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.

  12. Mesoscale simulation of polymer reaction equilibrium: Combining dissipative particle dynamics with reaction ensemble Monte Carlo. II. Supramolecular diblock copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lísal, Martin; Brennan, John K.; Smith, William R.

    2009-03-01

    We present an alternative formulation of the reaction ensemble dissipative particle dynamics (RxDPD) method [M. Lísal, J. K. Brennan, and W. R. Smith, J. Chem. Phys. 125, 16490 (2006)], a mesoscale simulation technique for studying polymer systems in reaction equilibrium. The RxDPD method combines elements of dissipative particle dynamics (DPD) and reaction ensemble Monte Carlo (RxMC), and is primarily targeted for the prediction of the system composition, thermodynamic properties, and phase behavior of reaction equilibrium polymer systems. The alternative formulation of the RxDPD method is demonstrated by considering a supramolecular diblock copolymer (SDC) melt in which two homopolymers, An and Bm, can reversibly bond at terminal binding sites to form a diblock copolymer, AnBm. We consider the effect of the terminal binding sites and the chemical incompatibility between A- and B-segments on the phase behavior. Both effects are found to strongly influence the resulting phase behavior. Due to the reversible nature of the binding, the SDC melt can be treated as the reaction equilibrium system An+Bm⇌AnBm. To simulate the An+Bm⇌AnBm melt, the system contains, in addition to full An, Bm, and AnBm polymers, two fractional polymers: one fractional polymer either fAn or fBm, and one fractional polymer fAnBm, which have fractional particles at the ends of the polymer chains. These fractional particles are coupled to the system via a coupling parameter. The time evolution of the system is governed by the DPD equations of motion, accompanied by random changes in the coupling parameter. Random changes in the coupling parameter mimic forward and reverse reaction steps as in the RxMC approach, and they are accepted with a probability derived from the expanded ensemble grand canonical partition function. Unlike the original RxDPD method that considers coupling of entire fractional polymers to the system, the expanded ensemble framework allows a stepwise coupling, thus

  13. Precision synthesis of poly(ionic liquid)-based block copolymers by cobalt-mediated radical polymerization and preliminary study of their self-assembling properties.

    PubMed

    Coupillaud, Paul; Fèvre, Maréva; Wirotius, Anne-Laure; Aissou, Karim; Fleury, Guillaume; Debuigne, Antoine; Detrembleur, Christophe; Mecerreyes, David; Vignolle, Joan; Taton, Daniel

    2014-02-01

    A poly(ionic liquid)-based block copolymer (PIL BCP), namely, poly(vinyl acetate)-b-poly(N-vinyl-3-butylimidazolium bromide), PVAc-b-PVBuImBr, is synthesized by sequential cobalt-mediated radical polymerization (CMRP). A PVAc precursor is first prepared at 30 °C in bulk by CMRP of VAc, using bis(acetylacetonato)cobalt(II), Co(acac)2, and a radical source (V-70). Growth of PVBuImBr from PVAc-Co(acac)2 is accomplished by CMRP in DMF/MeOH (2:1, v/v). This PIL BCP self-assembles in the sub-micron size range into aggregated core-shell micelles in THF, whereas polymeric vesicles are observed in water, as evidenced by dynamic light scattering (DLS) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). Thin-solid sample cut from raw materials analyzed by TEM shows an ordered lamellar organization by temperature-dependent synchrotron small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS). Anion exchange can be accomplished to achieve the corresponding PIL BCP with bis(trifluorosulfonyl)imide (Tf2 N(-)) anions, which also gives rise to an ordered lamellar phase in bulk samples. A complete suppression of SAXS second-order reflection suggests that this compound has a symmetric volume fraction (f ≈ 0.5). SAXS characterization of both di- and triblock PIL BCP analogues previously reported also shows a lamellar phase of very similar behavior, with only an increase of the period by about 8% at 60 °C.

  14. 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

  15. Block copolymer morphologies confined by square-shaped particle: Hard and soft confinement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Qiyi; Yang, Wenyan; Hu, Kaiyan

    2016-11-01

    The self-assembly of diblock copolymers confined around one square-shaped particle is studied systematically within two-dimensional self-consistent field theory (SCFT). In this model, we assume that the thin block copolymer film is confined in the vicinity of a square-shaped particle by a homopolymer melt, which is equivalent to the poor solvents. Multiple sequences of square-shaped particle-induced copolymer aggregates with different shapes and self-assembled internal morphologies are predicted as functions of the particle size, the structural portion of the copolymer, and the volume fraction of the copolymer. A rich variety of aggregates are found with complex internal self-assembled morphologies including complex structures of the vesicle, with one or several inverted micelle surrounded by the outer monolayer with the particle confined in the core. These results demonstrate that the assemblies of diblock copolymers formed around the square-shaped particle in poor solvents are of immediate interest to the assembly of copolymer and the morphology of biomembrane in the confined environment, as well as to the transitions of vesicles to micelles. Project supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 20804060) and the Research Foundation of Chongqing University of Science and Technology, China (Grant No. CK2013B16).

  16. 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.

  17. Nucleation of the BCC phase from disorder in a diblock copolymer melt: Testing approximate theories through simulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spencer, Russell K. W.; Curry, Paul F.; Wickham, Robert A.

    2016-10-01

    We examine nucleation of the stable body-centred-cubic (BCC) phase from the metastable uniform disordered phase in an asymmetric diblock copolymer melt. Our comprehensive, large-scale simulations of the time-dependent, mean-field Landau-Brazovskii model find that spherical droplets of the BCC phase nucleate directly from disorder. Near the order-disorder transition, the critical nucleus is large and has a classical profile, attaining the bulk BCC phase in an interior that is separated from disorder by a sharp interface. At greater undercooling, the amplitude of BCC order in the interior decreases and the nucleus interface broadens, leading to a diffuse critical nucleus. This diffuse nucleus becomes large as the simulation approaches the disordered phase spinodal. We show that our simulation follows the same nucleation pathway that Cahn and Hilliard found for an incompressible two-component fluid, across the entire metastable region. In contrast, a classical nucleation theory calculation based on the free energy of a planar interface between coexisting BCC and disordered phases agrees with simulation only in the limit of very small undercooling; we can expand this region of validity somewhat by accounting for the curvature of the droplet interface. A nucleation pathway involving a classical droplet persists, however, to deep undercooling in our simulation, but this pathway is energetically unfavourable. As a droplet grows in the simulation, its interface moves with a constant speed, and this speed is approximately proportional to the undercooling.

  18. Nucleation of the BCC phase from disorder in a diblock copolymer melt: Testing approximate theories through simulation.

    PubMed

    Spencer, Russell K W; Curry, Paul F; Wickham, Robert A

    2016-10-14

    We examine nucleation of the stable body-centred-cubic (BCC) phase from the metastable uniform disordered phase in an asymmetric diblock copolymer melt. Our comprehensive, large-scale simulations of the time-dependent, mean-field Landau-Brazovskii model find that spherical droplets of the BCC phase nucleate directly from disorder. Near the order-disorder transition, the critical nucleus is large and has a classical profile, attaining the bulk BCC phase in an interior that is separated from disorder by a sharp interface. At greater undercooling, the amplitude of BCC order in the interior decreases and the nucleus interface broadens, leading to a diffuse critical nucleus. This diffuse nucleus becomes large as the simulation approaches the disordered phase spinodal. We show that our simulation follows the same nucleation pathway that Cahn and Hilliard found for an incompressible two-component fluid, across the entire metastable region. In contrast, a classical nucleation theory calculation based on the free energy of a planar interface between coexisting BCC and disordered phases agrees with simulation only in the limit of very small undercooling; we can expand this region of validity somewhat by accounting for the curvature of the droplet interface. A nucleation pathway involving a classical droplet persists, however, to deep undercooling in our simulation, but this pathway is energetically unfavourable. As a droplet grows in the simulation, its interface moves with a constant speed, and this speed is approximately proportional to the undercooling.

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

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jianqi; Posselt, Dorthe; Smilgies, Detlef-M; Perlich, Jan; Kyriakos, Konstantinos; Jaksch, Sebastian; Papadakis, Christine M

    2014-08-26

    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.

  20. Oxygen K edge scattering from bulk comb diblock copolymer reveals extended, ordered backbones above lamellar order-disorder transition

    DOE PAGES

    Kortright, Jeffrey Barrett; Sun, Jing; Spencer, Ryan K.; ...

    2016-12-14

    The evolution of molecular morphology in bulk samples of comb diblock copolymer pNdc12-b-pNte21 across the lamellar order-disorder transition (ODT) is studied using resonant x-ray scattering at the oxygen K edge, with the goal of determining whether the molecules remain extended or collapse above the ODT. The distinct spectral resonances of carbonyl oxygen on the backbone and ether oxygen in the pNte side chains combine with their different site symmetry within the molecule to yield strong differences in bulk structural sensitivity at all temperatures. Comparison with simple models for the disordered phase clearly reveals that disordering at the ODT corresponds tomore » loss of positional order of molecules with extended backbones that retain orientational order, rather than backbone collapse into a locally isotropic disordered phase. This conclusion is facilitated directly by the distinct structural sensitivity at the two resonances. Lastly, we discuss the roles of depolarized scattering in enhancing this sensitivity, and background fluorescence in limiting dynamic range, in oxygen resonant scattering.« less

  1. Oxygen K edge scattering from bulk comb diblock copolymer reveals extended, ordered backbones above lamellar order-disorder transition

    SciTech Connect

    Kortright, Jeffrey Barrett; Sun, Jing; Spencer, Ryan K.; Jiang, Xi; Zuckermann, Ronald N.

    2016-12-14

    The evolution of molecular morphology in bulk samples of comb diblock copolymer pNdc12-b-pNte21 across the lamellar order-disorder transition (ODT) is studied using resonant x-ray scattering at the oxygen K edge, with the goal of determining whether the molecules remain extended or collapse above the ODT. The distinct spectral resonances of carbonyl oxygen on the backbone and ether oxygen in the pNte side chains combine with their different site symmetry within the molecule to yield strong differences in bulk structural sensitivity at all temperatures. Comparison with simple models for the disordered phase clearly reveals that disordering at the ODT corresponds to loss of positional order of molecules with extended backbones that retain orientational order, rather than backbone collapse into a locally isotropic disordered phase. This conclusion is facilitated directly by the distinct structural sensitivity at the two resonances. Lastly, we discuss the roles of depolarized scattering in enhancing this sensitivity, and background fluorescence in limiting dynamic range, in oxygen resonant scattering.

  2. Conformation and structural changes of diblock copolymers with octopus-like micelle formation in the presence of external stimuli

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dammertz, K.; Saier, A. M.; Marti, O.; Amirkhani, M.

    2014-04-01

    External stimuli such as vapours and electric fields can be used to manipulate the formation of AB-diblock copolymers on surfaces. We study the conformational variation of PS-b-PMMA (polystyrene-block-poly(methyl methacrylate)), PS and PMMA adsorbed on mica and their response to saturated water or chloroform atmospheres. Using specimens with only partial polymer coverage, new unanticipated effects were observed. Water vapour, a non-solvent for all three polymers, was found to cause high surface mobility. In contrast, chloroform vapour (a solvent for all three polymers) proved to be less efficient. Furthermore, the influence of an additional applied electric field was investigated. A dc field oriented parallel to the sample surface induces the formation of polymer islands which assemble into wormlike chains. Moreover, PS-b-PMMA forms octopus-like micelles (OLMs) on mica. Under the external stimuli mentioned above, the wormlike formations of OLMs are able to align in the direction of the external electric field. In the absence of an electric field, the OLMs disaggregate and exhibit phase separated structures under chloroform vapour.

  3. Hierarchical multiple bit clusters and patterned media enabled by novel nanofabrication techniques -- High resolution electron beam lithography and block polymer self assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xiao, Qijun

    This thesis discusses the full scope of a project exploring the physics of hierarchical clusters of interacting nanomagnets. These clusters may be relevant for novel applications such as multilevel data storage devices. The work can be grouped into three main activities: micromagnetic simulation, fabrication and characterization of proof-of-concept prototype devices, and efforts to scale down the structures by creating the hierarchical structures with the aid of diblock copolymer self assembly. Theoretical micromagnetic studies and simulations based on Landau-Lifshitz-Gilbert (LLG) equation were conducted on nanoscale single domain magnetic entities. For the simulated nanomagnet clusters with perpendicular uniaxial anisotropy, the simulation showed the switching field distributions, the stability of the magnetostatic states with distinctive total cluster perpendicular moments, and the stepwise magnetic switching curves. For simulated nanomagnet clusters with in-plane shape anisotropy, the simulation showed the stepwise switching behaviors governed by thermal agitation and cluster configurations. Proof-of-concept cluster devices with three interacting Co nanomagnets were fabricated by e-beam lithography (EBL) and pulse-reverse electrochemical deposition (PRECD). EBL patterning on a suspended 100 nm SiN membrane showed improved lateral lithography resolution to 30 nm. The Co nanomagnets deposited using the PRECD method showed perpendicular anisotropy. The switching experiments with external applied fields were able to switch the Co nanomagnets through the four magnetostatic states with distinctive total perpendicular cluster magnetization, and proved the feasibility of multilevel data storage devices based on the cluster concept. Shrinking the structures size was experimented by the aid of diblock copolymer. Thick poly(styrene)-b-poly(methyl methacrylate) (PS-b-PMMA) diblock copolymer templates aligned with external electrical field were used to fabricate long Ni

  4. Water-stable diblock polystyrene-block-poly(2-vinyl pyridine) and diblock polystyrene-block-poly(methyl methacrylate) cylindrical patterned surfaces inhibit settlement of zoospores of the green alga Ulva.

    PubMed

    Grozea, Claudia M; Gunari, Nikhil; Finlay, John A; Grozea, Daniel; Callow, Maureen E; Callow, James A; Lu, Zheng-Hong; Walker, Gilbert C

    2009-04-13

    Nanopatterned surfaces with hydrophobic and hydrophilic domains were produced using the diblock copolymer polystyrene-block-poly(2-vinyl pyridine) (PS-b-P2VP) and polystyrene-block-poly(methyl methacrylate) (PS-b-PMMA). The PS-b-P2VP diblock copolymer, mixed with the cross-linker benzophenone and spin-coated onto silicon wafers, showed self-assembled cylindrical structures, which were retained after UV treatment for cross-linking. The thin films displayed cylindrical domains after immersion in water. This study shows that pattern retention in water is possible for a long period of time, at least for two weeks in pure water and three weeks in artificial seawater. The PS-b-PMMA diblock showed self-assembled cylindrical structures. PS-b-P2VP and PS-b-PMMA cylindrical patterned surfaces showed reduced settlement of zoospores of the green alga Ulva compared to unpatterned surfaces. The copolymers were investigated using atomic force microscopy and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy.

  5. Cononsolvency-induced micellization of pyrene end-labeled diblock copolymers of N-isopropylacrylamide and oligo(ethylene glycol) methyl ether methacrylate.

    PubMed

    Rao, Jingyi; Xu, Jian; Luo, Shizhong; Liu, Shiyong

    2007-11-06

    Pyrene end-labeled double hydrophilic diblock copolymers, poly(N-isopropylacrylamide)-b-poly(oligo(ethylene glycol) methyl ether methacrylate) (Py-PNIPAM-b-POEGMA), were synthesized via consecutive reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer polymerization using a pyrene-containing dithioester as the chain transfer agent. These diblock copolymers molecularly dissolve in pure methanol and water, but form well-defined and nearly monodisperse PNIPAM-core micelles in an appropriate mixture of them due to the cononsolvency of PNIPAM block. 1H NMR, laser light scattering, fluorescence spectroscopy, and transmission electron microscopy were employed to characterize the cononsolvency-induced PNIPAM-core micelles. When the volume fraction of water, phi water, in the methanol/water mixture is in the range of 0.5-0.8, the sizes of micelles are in the range of 20-30 nm in radius for Py-PNIPAM50-b- POEGMA18. At phi water = 0.5, the formed micelles possess the highest overall micelle density and the largest molar mass. The effects of varying the block lengths of Py-PNIPAM-b-POEGMA diblock copolymers on the structural parameters of PNIPAM-core micelles have also been explored. Although we can observe the immediate appearance of bluish tinge upon mixing the diblock copolymer solution in methanol with equal volume of water (phi water = 0.5), which is characteristic of the formation of micellar aggregates, the whole micellization process apparently takes a relatively long time to complete, as revealed by monitoring the time dependence of fluorescence emission spectra. The excimer/monomer fluorescence intensity ratios, IE/IM, continuously decrease with time and then reach a plateau value after approximately 20 min. The decrease of IE/IM after the initial formation of pseudo-equilibrium micelles should be ascribed to the structural rearrangement and further packing of PNIPAM segments within the micelle core, restricting the mobility of pyrene end groups and decreasing the

  6. 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

  7. Process-Accessible States of Block Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, De-Wen; Müller, Marcus

    2017-02-01

    Process-directed self-assembly of block copolymers refers to thermodynamic processes that reproducibly direct the kinetics of structure formation from a starting, unstable state into a selected, metastable mesostructure. We investigate the kinetics of self-assembly of linear A C B triblock copolymers after a rapid transformation of the middle C block from B to A . This prototypical process (e.g., photochemical transformation) converts the initial, equilibrium mesophase of the A B B copolymer into a well-defined but unstable, starting state of the A A B copolymer. The spontaneous structure formation that ensues from this unstable state becomes trapped in a metastable mesostructure, and we systematically explore which metastable mesostructures can be fabricated by varying the block copolymer composition of the initial and final states. In addition to the equilibrium mesophases of linear A B diblock copolymers, this diagram of process-accessible states includes 7 metastable periodic mesostructures, inter alia, Schoen's F-RD periodic minimal surface. Generally, we observe that the final, metastable mesostructure of the A A B copolymer possesses the same symmetry as the initial, equilibrium mesophase of the A B B copolymer.

  8. Process-Accessible States of Block Copolymers.

    PubMed

    Sun, De-Wen; Müller, Marcus

    2017-02-10

    Process-directed self-assembly of block copolymers refers to thermodynamic processes that reproducibly direct the kinetics of structure formation from a starting, unstable state into a selected, metastable mesostructure. We investigate the kinetics of self-assembly of linear ACB triblock copolymers after a rapid transformation of the middle C block from B to A. This prototypical process (e.g., photochemical transformation) converts the initial, equilibrium mesophase of the ABB copolymer into a well-defined but unstable, starting state of the AAB copolymer. The spontaneous structure formation that ensues from this unstable state becomes trapped in a metastable mesostructure, and we systematically explore which metastable mesostructures can be fabricated by varying the block copolymer composition of the initial and final states. In addition to the equilibrium mesophases of linear AB diblock copolymers, this diagram of process-accessible states includes 7 metastable periodic mesostructures, inter alia, Schoen's F-RD periodic minimal surface. Generally, we observe that the final, metastable mesostructure of the AAB copolymer possesses the same symmetry as the initial, equilibrium mesophase of the ABB copolymer.

  9. Chemoepitaxial guiding underlayers for density asymmetric and energetically asymmetric diblock copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nation, Benjamin D.; Ludovice, Peter J.; Henderson, Clifford L.

    2016-04-01

    Block copolymers, polymers composed of two or more homopolymers covalently bonded together, are currently being investigated as a method to extend optical lithography due to their ability to microphase separate on small size scales. In order to drive down the size that these BCPs phase separate, the BCPs with larger Flory-Huggin's χparameter needs to be found. Typically these BCPs are composed of more dissimilar homopolymers. However, changing these interactions also changes how BCPs interact with their guiding underlayers. In this paper, several block copolymers are simulated annealing on chemoepitaxial guiding underlayers using a coarse-grained molecular dynamics model in order to explore the effect that either energetic asymmetry or density asymmetry in the BCP have on the pattern registration. It is found that energetic asymmetry in BCPs causes one of the blocks to desire to skin, which shifts the composition of the background region that leads to well aligned vertical lamellae formation. It is hypothesized that moderate footing and undercutting at the underlayer or slight skinning at the free surface can increase the kinetics of defect annihilation by decreasing the distance that bridges must form. The density asymmetric BCPs simulated in this paper have different mechanical properties which lead to straighter sidewalls in the BCP film and potentially lead to better pattern registration. It is hypothesized that altering the compressibility of the blocks can alter equilibrium defectivity.

  10. Complex Transformations between Bicontinuous Cubic and Cylinder Phases in a Polystyrene-block-Poly(ethylene oxide) Diblock Copolymer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Lei; Sun, Lu; Ge, Qing; Quirk, Roderic P.; Cheng, Stephen Z. D.; Hsiao, Benjamin S.; Sics, Igors; Avila-Orta, Carlos

    2004-03-01

    Complex phase transformations between bicontinuous cubic and hexagonal cylinder (Hex) phases in a polystyrene-block-poly(ethylene oxide) (PS-b-PEO) diblock copolymer were investigated using small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS), transmission electron microscope (TEM), rheology, and polarized light microscope (PLM). The sample exhibited a typical double gyroid (G) phase, together with a minority plumbers nightmare (P) phase which was only ˜6 vol.% as calculated from the SAXS scattering intensities for each phase. These two bicontinuous cubic phases had the same unit cell dimensions. Under a large-amplitude reciprocating shear, the bicontinuous cubic sample transformed into a single-crystal Hex phase. Annealing this sample at 150 ^oC for 40 min, the Hex phase partially transformed into well-oriented G and P twin structures, as evidenced by two-dimensional synchrotron SAXS experiments. Epitaxial phase transformation relationships between the Hex/G and Hex/P phases were identified. The phase transformations were further confirmed by rheology study and PLM observations. The P phase was metastable with respect to the G phase, and it disappeared when the sample was heated above the order-disorder transition temperature and annealed at 150 ^oC. The mechanism of the Hex arrow G transformation was investigated by TEM. Generally, in a hexagonal cell, three cylinders evolved into left-handed helices, while the other three formed right-handed helices. An intermediate five-fold junction was speculated to facilitate the phase transformation. The Hex -> G phase transformation was observed to follow a nucleation and growth mechanism, and the phase transition zone was less than one unit cell.

  11. Self-assembling semiconducting polymers--rods and gels from electronic materials.

    PubMed

    Clark, Andrew P-Z; Shi, Chenjun; Ng, Benny C; Wilking, James N; Ayzner, Alexander L; Stieg, Adam Z; Schwartz, Benjamin J; Mason, Thomas G; Rubin, Yves; Tolbert, Sarah H

    2013-02-26

    In an effort to favor the formation of straight polymer chains without crystalline grain boundaries, we have synthesized an amphiphilic conjugated polyelectrolyte, poly(fluorene-alt-thiophene) (PFT), which self-assembles in aqueous solutions to form cylindrical micelles. In contrast to many diblock copolymer assemblies, the semiconducting backbone runs parallel, not perpendicular, to the long axis of the cylindrical micelle. Solution-phase micelle formation is observed by X-ray and visible light scattering. The micelles can be cast as thin films, and the cylindrical morphology is preserved in the solid state. The effects of self-assembly are also observed through spectral shifts in optical absorption and photoluminescence. Solutions of higher-molecular-weight PFT micelles form gel networks at sufficiently high aqueous concentrations. Rheological characterization of the PFT gels reveals solid-like behavior and strain hardening below the yield point, properties similar to those found in entangled gels formed from surfactant-based micelles. Finally, electrical measurements on diode test structures indicate that, despite a complete lack of crystallinity in these self-assembled polymers, they effectively conduct electricity.

  12. 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

  13. Surface characterization of poly(L-lactic acid)-methoxy poly(ethylene glycol) diblock copolymers by static and dynamic contact angle measurements, FTIR, and ATR-FTIR.

    PubMed

    Mert, O; Doganci, E; Erbil, H Y; Demir, A S

    2008-02-05

    The surface composition and surface free energy properties of two types of amphiphilic and semicrystalline diblock copolymers consisting of poly(L-lactic acid) coupled to (methoxy poly(ethylene glycol) (PLLA-MePEG) having differing block lengths of PEG were investigated by using static and dynamic contact angle measurements, transmission Fourier infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), and attenuated total reflection spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR) and compared with results obtained from PLLA and MePEG homopolymers. The contact angle results were evaluated by using the van Oss-Good method (acid-base method), and it was determined that the Lewis base surface tension coefficient (gamma-) of the copolymers increased with an increase of the PEG molar content at the copolymer surface. This result is in good agreement with the transmission FTIR and ATR-FTIR results but not proportional to them, indicating that the surfaces of the copolymers are highly mobile and that the molecular rearrangement takes place upon contact with a polar liquid drop. The dynamic contact angle measurements showed that the strong acid-base interaction between the oxygen atoms in the copolymer backbone of the relatively more hydrophilic PEG segments with the Lewis acidic groups of the polar and hydrogen-bonding water molecules enabled the surface molecules to restructure (conformational change) at the contact area, so that the PEG segments moved upward, whereas the apolar methyl pendant groups of PLLA segments buried downward.

  14. Giant surfactants of poly(ethylene oxide)- b-polystyrene-(molecular nanoparticle): nanoparticle-driven self-assembly with sub-10-nm nanostructures in thin films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hsu, Chih-Hao; Lin, Zhiwei; Dong, Xue-Hui; Hsieh, I.-Fan; Cheng, Stephen Z. D.

    2014-03-01

    Giant surfactants are built upon precisely attaching shape- and volume-persistent molecular nanoparticles (MNP) to polymeric flexible tails. The unique class of self-assembling materials, giant surfactants, has been demonstrated to form self-assembled ordered nanostructures, and their self-assembly behaviors are remarkably sensitive to primary chemical structures. In this work, two sets of giant surfactants with functionalized MNP attached to diblock copolymer tails were studied in thin films. Carboxylic acid-functionalized [60]fullerene (AC60) tethered with PEO- b-PS (PEO-PS-AC60) represents an ABA' (hydrophilic-hydrophobic-hydrophilic) giant surfactant, and fluoro-functionalized polyhedral oligomeric silsesquioxane (FPOSS) tethered with PEO- b-PS (PEO-PS-FPOSS) represents an ABC (hydrophilic-hydrophobic-omniphobic) one. The dissimilar chemical natures of the MNPs result in different arrangement of MNPs in self-assembled structures, the dispersion of AC60 in PEO domain and the single domain of FPOSS. Moreover, the chemically bonded MNPs could induce the originally disordered small molecular PEO- b-PS to form ordered cylindrical and lamellar structure, as evidenced by TEM and GISAXS, leading to sub-10-nm nanostructures of copolymer in the thin film state.

  15. Dissipative particle dynamics simulations of polymer-protected nanoparticle self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Spaeth, Justin R; Kevrekidis, Ioannis G; Panagiotopoulos, Athanassios Z

    2011-11-14

    Dissipative particle dynamics simulations were used to study the effects of mixing time, solute solubility, solute and diblock copolymer concentrations, and copolymer block length on the rapid coprecipitation of polymer-protected nanoparticles. The simulations were aimed at modeling Flash NanoPrecipitation, a process in which hydrophobic solutes and amphiphilic block copolymers are dissolved in a water-miscible organic solvent and then rapidly mixed with water to produce composite nanoparticles. A previously developed model by Spaeth et al. [J. Chem. Phys. 134, 164902 (2011)] was used. The model was parameterized to reproduce equilibrium and transport properties of the solvent, hydrophobic solute, and diblock copolymer. Anti-solvent mixing was modeled using time-dependent solvent-solute and solvent-copolymer interactions. We find that particle size increases with mixing time, due to the difference in solute and polymer solubilities. Increasing the solubility of the solute leads to larger nanoparticles for unfavorable solute-polymer interactions and to smaller nanoparticles for favorable solute-polymer interactions. A decrease in overall solute and polymer concentration produces smaller nanoparticles, because the difference in the diffusion coefficients of a single polymer and of larger clusters becomes more important to their relative rates of collisions under more dilute conditions. An increase in the solute-polymer ratio produces larger nanoparticles, since a collection of large particles has less surface area than a collection of small particles with the same total volume. An increase in the hydrophilic block length of the polymer leads to smaller nanoparticles, due to an enhanced ability of each polymer to shield the nanoparticle core. For unfavorable solute-polymer interactions, the nanoparticle size increases with hydrophobic block length. However, for favorable solute-polymer interactions, nanoparticle size exhibits a local minimum with respect to the

  16. Effect of TiO2 nanoparticles on self-assembly behaviors and optical and photovoltaic properties of the P3HT-b-P2VP block copolymer.

    PubMed

    Yen, Wei-Che; Lee, Yi-Huan; Lin, Jhih-Fong; Dai, Chi-An; Jeng, U-Ser; Su, Wei-Fang

    2011-01-04

    An ordered nanostructure can be created from the hybrid materials of self-assembly poly(3-hexyl thiophene-b-2-vinyl pyridine) and nicotinic acid-modified titanium dioxide nanoparticles (P3HT-b-P2VP/TiO(2)). TEM and XRD analyses reveal that the TiO(2) nanoparticles (NPs) are preferentially confined in the P2VP domain of P3HT-b-P2VP whereas TiO(2) NPs interact with either pure P3HT or a blend of P3HT and P2VP to produce microsized phase segregation. The morphologies of lamellar and cylindrical structures are disturbed when the loading of TiO(2) NPs is 40 wt % or higher. Cylindrical P3HT-b-P2VP/TiO(2) exhibits a small blue shift in absorption and photoluminescence spectra with increasing TiO(2) loading as compared to P3HT/TiO(2). The NPs cause a slightly misaligned P3HT domain in the copolymer. Furthermore, the PL quenching of P3HT-b-P2VP/TiO(2) becomes very large as a result of efficient charge separation in the ordered nanodomain at 16 nm. Solar cells fabricated from self-assembly P3HT-b-P2VP/TiO(2) hybrid materials exhibit a >30 fold improvement in power conversion efficiency as compared to the corresponding 0.3P3HT-0.7P2VP/TiO(2) polymer blend hybrid. This study paves the way for the further development of high-efficiency polymer-inorganic nanoparticle hybrid solar cells using a self-assembled block copolymer.

  17. Spin-on Di-block Copolymer Films for Covalent DNA Attachment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rengifo, Hernan; Grigoras, Cristian; Ju, Jingyue; Koberstein, Jeffrey

    2007-03-01

    We demonstrate that alkyne end-functional block copolymers can be used to immobilize fluorescently labeled dyes, RNA or DNA onto glass substrates by 1,3-dipolar cycloaddition reactions or so-called ``click chemistry''. Spin cast films of φ-alkyne-terminated poly(methylmethacrylate-b-tert butyl acrylate) spontaneous form bilayer structures with thicknesses ranging from 5 to 30nm on silicon wafers or glass. The areal density of functional groups is controlled by adjusting the thickness of the monolayer through spin coating speed or solution concentration. The charge at the surface can be also controlled by de-protection of the tert-butyl ester groups by exposure to UV radiation in the presence of photoacid generator to form carboxylic acid groups. The surface is characterized by contact angle, ellipsometry, fluorescent imaging and angle-dependent X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (ADXPS). The technique is used to create DNA microarrays and the performance of these arrays is evaluated for DNA hybridization and DNA Sequencing by Synthesis.

  18. 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.

  19. 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).

  20. Durability and Performance of Polystyrene-b-Poly(vinylbenzyl trimethylammonium) Diblock Copolymer and Equivalent Blend Anion Exchange Membranes

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-01-01

    properties; however dropcast films of the pure diblock were not robust enough to study.24 Through controlled film casting , pure PS diblock films were...mL21 in a round bot- tom flask. The solution was heated at 80!C with magnetic stir - ring until the polymer was completely dissolved as a homogeneous...solution. Water Uptake Water uptake (WU) was characterized using a dynamic vapor sorption apparatus (SMS DVS Advantage 1, Allentown, PA). A membrane

  1. Phase structures and morphologies determined by competitions among self-organization, crystallization, and vitrification in a disordered poly(ethylene oxide)-b-polystyrene diblock copolymer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Lei; Chen, Yan; Zhang, Anqiu; Calhoun, Bret H.; Chun, Moonseok; Quirk, Roderic P.; Cheng, Stephen Z. D.; Hsiao, Benjamin S.; Yeh, Fengji; Hashimoto, Takeji

    1999-10-01

    A poly(ethylene oxide)-b-polystyrene (PEO-b-PS) diblock copolymer having a number-average molecular weight (M¯n) of 11 000 g/mol in the PEO blocks and an M¯n of 5200 g/mol in the PS blocks has been synthesized (with a volume fraction of the PEO blocks of 0.66 in the molten state). Differential scanning calorimetry results show that this copolymer possesses a single endotherm, which is attributed to the melting of the PEO-block crystals. Based on real-time resolved synchrotron small-angle x-ray scattering (SAXS) observations, the diblock copolymer is in a disordered state above the glass transition temperature of the PS-rich phase (TPSg), which has been determined to be 44.0 °C during cooling using dilatometer mode in thermomechanical measurements. The order-disorder transition temperature (TODT) for this diblock copolymer is thus experimentally inaccessible. Depending upon different isothermal crystallization temperatures quenched from the disordered state (Tqs), four cases can be investigated in order to understand the phase relationships among self-organization, crystallization of the PEO blocks, and vitrification of the PS-rich phase: the region where the Tq is above the TPSg, the regions where the Tq is near but slightly higher or lower than the TPSg; and the region where the Tq is below the TPSg. Utilizing simultaneous SAXS and wide angle x-ray-diffraction experiments, it can be seen that lamellar crystals of the PEO blocks in the first case grow with little morphological constraint due to initial disordered phase morphology. As the Tq approaches but is still slightly higher than the TPSg, as in the second case, the PEO-block crystals with a greater long period (L) than that of the disordered state start to grow. The initial disordered phase morphology is gradually destroyed, at least to a major extent. When the Tq is near but slightly lower than the TPSg, the crystallization takes place largely within the existing phase morphology. Only a gradual shift of

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. In situ formation and gelation mechanism of thermoresponsive stereocomplexed hydrogels upon mixing diblock and triblock poly(lactic acid)/poly(ethylene glycol) copolymers.

    PubMed

    Mao, Hailiang; Pan, Pengju; Shan, Guorong; Bao, Yongzhong

    2015-05-28

    A novel in situ formed gel system with potential biodegradability and biocompatibility is developed by mixing the diblock and triblock poly(lactic acid)/poly(ethylene glycol) (PLA/PEG) copolymers with opposite configurations of PLA blocks. In situ gelation of such system is extremely fast, which happens within 10 s after mixing. In situ gelation, gel-to-sol transition, crystalline structure, microstructures, and mechanical properties of PLA-PEG/PLA-PEG-PLA enantiomerically mixed gels are significantly influenced by the mixing ratio, degree of polymerization for PEG block in triblock (DPPEG,tri) and diblock copolymers (DPPEG,di). It is found that in situ gelation of PLA-PEG/PLA-PEG-PLA enantiomeric mixture just happen at relatively smaller PLA-PEG/PLA-PEG-PLA mass ratio and larger DPPEG,tri. Hydrodynamic diameters of PLA-PEG and PLA-PEG-PLA copolymers in dilute solution increase remarkably upon mixing, indicating the formation of bridging networks. Stereocomplexed crystallites are formed for the PLA hydrophobic domains in PLA-PEG/PLA-PEG-PLA enantiomeric mixtures. As indicated by synchrotron-radiation SAXS analysis, the enantiomeric mixture changes from a compactly to loosely aggregated structure and the intermicellar distance enhances with increasing DPPEG,tri, DPPEG,di, or PLA-PEG-PLA fraction. Gelation mechanism of PLA-PEG/PLA-PEG-PLA enantiomeric mixture is proposed, in which part of PLA-PEG-PLA chains act as the connecting bridges between star and flower-like micelles and the stereocomplexed crystallites in micelle cores act as physically cross-linked points.

  5. Block Copolymer Metastability: Scientific Nightmare or Engineering Dream?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bates, Frank S.

    1997-03-01

    Most experimental studies and almost all theories that deal with block copolymers, or mixtures of block copolymers and homopolymers, have been designed from an equilibrium perspective. Yet a myriad of factors conspire to retard approach to equilibrium in these systems, including: subtle features in the free energy surface that are controlled by ordered state symmetry; a coupling between microphase separation and entanglement dynamics; complex molecular architectures such as multiblock, starblock, and miktoarm. Even unentangled low molecular weight diblock copolymers, the simplest and dynamically least encumbered materials, exhibit long-lived metastable states that confound attempts to validate equilibrium theories. However, this apparent dilemma can be exploited through clever processing strategies. This lecture will address two opposing consequences of block copolymer metastability. The first is a potential nightmare: Can we ever establish universal block copolymer phase diagrams? The second is the stuff of dreams: Self-assembled thermoset nanocomposites.

  6. Self-assembly concepts for multicompartment nanostructures.

    PubMed

    Gröschel, André H; Müller, Axel H E

    2015-07-28

    Compartmentalization is ubiquitous to many biological and artificial systems, be it for the separate storage of incompatible matter or to isolate transport processes. Advancements in the synthesis of sequential block copolymers offer a variety of tools to replicate natural design principles with tailor-made soft matter for the precise spatial separation of functionalities on multiple length scales. Here, we review recent trends in the self-assembly of amphiphilic block copolymers to multicompartment nanostructures (MCNs) under (semi-)dilute conditions, with special emphasis on ABC triblock terpolymers. The intrinsic immiscibility of connected blocks induces short-range repulsion into discrete nano-domains stabilized by a third, soluble block or molecular additive. Polymer blocks can be synthesized from an arsenal of functional monomers directing self-assembly through packing frustration or response to various fields. The mobility in solution further allows the manipulation of self-assembly processes into specific directions by clever choice of environmental conditions. This review focuses on practical concepts that direct self-assembly into predictable nanostructures, while narrowing particle dispersity with respect to size, shape and internal morphology. The growing understanding of underlying self-assembly mechanisms expands the number of experimental concepts providing the means to target and manipulate progressively complex superstructures.

  7. Self-assembly concepts for multicompartment nanostructures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gröschel, André H.; Müller, Axel H. E.

    2015-07-01

    Compartmentalization is ubiquitous to many biological and artificial systems, be it for the separate storage of incompatible matter or to isolate transport processes. Advancements in the synthesis of sequential block copolymers offer a variety of tools to replicate natural design principles with tailor-made soft matter for the precise spatial separation of functionalities on multiple length scales. Here, we review recent trends in the self-assembly of amphiphilic block copolymers to multicompartment nanostructures (MCNs) under (semi-)dilute conditions, with special emphasis on ABC triblock terpolymers. The intrinsic immiscibility of connected blocks induces short-range repulsion into discrete nano-domains stabilized by a third, soluble block or molecular additive. Polymer blocks can be synthesized from an arsenal of functional monomers directing self-assembly through packing frustration or response to various fields. The mobility in solution further allows the manipulation of self-assembly processes into specific directions by clever choice of environmental conditions. This review focuses on practical concepts that direct self-assembly into predictable nanostructures, while narrowing particle dispersity with respect to size, shape and internal morphology. The growing understanding of underlying self-assembly mechanisms expands the number of experimental concepts providing the means to target and manipulate progressively complex superstructures.

  8. Single-molecule tracking studies of flow-induced microdomain alignment in cylinder-forming polystyrene-poly(ethylene oxide) diblock copolymer films.

    PubMed

    Tran-Ba, Khanh-Hoa; Higgins, Daniel A; Ito, Takashi

    2014-09-25

    Flow-based approaches are promising routes to preparation of aligned block copolymer microdomains within confined spaces. An in-depth characterization of such nanoscale morphologies within macroscopically nonuniform materials under ambient conditions is, however, often challenging. In this study, single-molecule tracking (SMT) methods were employed to probe the flow-induced alignment of cylindrical microdomains (ca. 22 nm in diameter) in polystyrene-poly(ethylene oxide) diblock copolymer (PS-b-PEO) films. Films of micrometer-scale thicknesses were prepared by overlaying a benzene solution droplet on a glass coverslip with a rectangular glass plate, followed by solvent evaporation under a nitrogen atmosphere. The microdomain alignment was quantitatively assessed from SMT data exhibiting the diffusional motions of individual sulforhodamine B fluorescent probes that preferentially partitioned into cylindrical PEO microdomains. Better overall microdomain orientation along the flow direction was observed near the substrate interface in films prepared at a higher flow rate, suggesting that the microdomain alignment was primarily induced by shear flow. The SMT data also revealed the presence of micrometer-scale grains consisting of highly ordered microdomains with coherent orientation. The results of this study provide insights into shear-based preparation of aligned cylindrical microdomains in block copolymer films from solutions within confined spaces.

  9. Effect of cosolvents on the self-assembly of a non-ionic polyethylene oxide-polypropylene oxide-polyethylene oxide block copolymer in the protic ionic liquid ethylammonium nitrate.

    PubMed

    Chen, Zhengfei; Greaves, Tamar L; Caruso, Rachel A; Drummond, Calum J

    2015-03-01

    The effect of water and methanol on the self-assembled structures formed by the polyethylene oxide-polypropylene oxide-polyethylene oxide block copolymer Pluronic P123 in ethylammonium nitrate was investigated by small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS). Two ternary phase diagrams were established. The addition of water had only a minor effect on the liquid crystal structures, however methanol had a significant effect, which was attributed to methanol being a good solvent for both the PEO and PPO blocks of the polymer. No lyotropic liquid crystal phases were retained when methanol reached 25 wt%. The phase behaviour did not change significantly over the temperature range from 25 to 45°C.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. FhuA deletion variant Δ1-159 overexpression in inclusion bodies and refolding with Polyethylene-Poly(ethylene glycol) diblock copolymer.

    PubMed

    Dworeck, Tamara; Petri, Anne-Kathrin; Muhammad, Noor; Fioroni, Marco; Schwaneberg, Ulrich

    2011-05-01

    Membrane protein isolation is a challenging problem. In fact especially their extraction from the respective membrane is difficult and often goes along with losses in yield. Usually expensive detergents are needed to extract the target protein from the membrane. Therefore finding an efficient overexpression and extraction method and an alternative to detergents is desirable. In this study we describe a new and fast method to express, extract and purify an engineered variant of the FhuA protein (FhuA Δ1-159) that acts as passive diffusion channel, using a diblock copolymer as an alternative to detergents like octyl-POE (n-octylpolyoxyethylene). The N-terminal leader sequence, facilitating the protein's transport to the outer membrane was deleted (FhuA Δ1-159 Δsignal), resulting in protein accumulation in easy to isolate inclusion bodies. Urea was used to solubilise the unfolded protein and dialysis against phosphate-buffer containing the commercially available diblock copolymer PE-PEG[Polyethylene-Poly(ethyleneglycol)] lead to protein refolding. Circular dichroism spectroscopy revealed a high β-sheet percentage within the refolded protein secondary structure indicating the successful reconstitution of FhuA Δ1-159 Δsignal native state. Furthermore the channel functionality of FhuA Δ1-159 Δsignal was verified by measuring the in and out-flux through the protein when inserted into liposome membrane, using the HRP/TMB (HRP=Horse Radish Peroxidase, TMB=3,3',5,5'-tetramethylbenzidine) assay system.

  13. Self-assembling linear and star shaped poly(ϵ-caprolactone)/poly[(meth)acrylic acid] block copolymers as carriers of indomethacin and quercetin.

    PubMed

    Bury, Katarzyna; Du Prez, Filip; Neugebauer, Dorota

    2013-11-01

    A amphiphilic linear AB, BAB, and star shaped (AB)3 block copolymers of poly(ϵ-caprolactone) (PCL)/poly(meth)acrylic acid (P(M)AA) are used for the preparation of nanoparticles and drug entrapment, where indomethacin and quercetin are employed as model drugs. Drug loading experiments with the nanoparticles based on PAA block copolymers demonstrate a higher efficiency for the star structure, whereas the PMAA star copolymer presents the lowest entrapment ability. The release properties are studied at room temperature and 37 °C in phosphate buffer solutions with pH equal to 5 and 7.4. The kinetic profiles show a strong relation to the copolymer's topology, indicating the lowest release rates from the star based superstructures, while the PMAA particles are less stable than those containing PAA segment(s).

  14. Self-assembled micelles composed of doxorubicin conjugated Y-shaped PEG-poly(glutamic acid)2 copolymers via hydrazone linkers.

    PubMed

    Sui, Bowen; Xu, Hui; Jin, Jian; Gou, Jingxin; Liu, Jingshuo; Tang, Xing; Zhang, Yu; Xu, Jinghua; Zhang, Hongfeng; Jin, Xiangqun

    2014-08-11

    In this work, micelles composed of doxorubicin-conjugated Y-shaped copolymers (YMs) linked via an acid-labile linker were constructed. Y-shaped copolymers of mPEG-b-poly(glutamate-hydrazone-doxorubicin)2 and linear copolymers of mPEG-b-poly(glutamate-hydrazone-doxorubicin) were synthesized and characterized. Particle size, size distribution, morphology, drug loading content (DLC) and drug release of the micelles were determined. Alterations in size and DLC of the micelles could be achieved by varying the hydrophobic block lengths. Moreover, at fixed DLCs, YMs showed a smaller diameter than micelles composed of linear copolymers (LMs). Also, all prepared micelles showed sustained release behaviors under physiological conditions over 72 h. DOX loaded in YMs was released more completely, with 30% more drug released in acid. The anti-tumor efficacy of the micelles against HeLa cells was evaluated by MTT assays, and YMs exhibited stronger cytotoxic effects than LMs in a dose- and time-dependent manner. Cellular uptake studied by CLSM indicated that YMs and LMs were readily taken up by HeLa cells. According to the results of this study, doxorubicin-conjugated Y-shaped PEG-(polypeptide)2 copolymers showed advantages over linear copolymers, like assembling into smaller nanoparticles, faster drug release in acid, which may correspond to higher cellular uptake and enhanced extracellular/intracellular drug release, indicating their potential in constructing nano-sized drug delivery systems.

  15. 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.

  16. Stereocomplex Crystallization of Linear Two-Armed Stereo Diblock Copolymers: Effects of Chain Directional Change, Coinitiator Moiety, and Terminal Groups.

    PubMed

    Tsuji, Hideto; Ogawa, Michiaki; Arakawa, Yuki

    2017-03-30

    Two-armed poly(l-lactide) (PLLA)-b-poly(d-lactide) (PDLA) (2-LD) copolymers with a wide-range of molecular weight were synthesized and the effect of coinitiator moiety, which functions as impurity and causes chain directional change in the middle of molecules (Effect A), and/or the additional effect of types of terminal groups (Effect B) on crystallization behavior of 2-LD copolymers were studied, in comparison with that reported for one-armed PLLA-b-PDLA (1-LD) copolymers. Formation of only stereocomplex (SC) crystallites in 2-LD and 1-LD copolymers indicates that neighboring PLLA and PDLA blocks facilitated SC crystallization and neither Effect A nor B affected the crystalline species. Effect A and/or B (both hydroxyl terminal groups) disturbed cold SC crystallization of 2-LD copolymers compared to that of 1-LD copolymers. Crystalline growth morphologies of 2-LD and 1-LD copolymers during cold SC crystallization were spherical and solid sheaf, respectively, exhibiting that crystalline growth morphology was influenced by Effects A and/or B. The melting temperature or crystalline thickness of SC crystallites were determined by number-average molecular weight per one block and not affected by Effect A or B. Maximum radial growth rates of spherulites of 2-LD copolymers compared to those of 1-LD copolymers were largely decreased by Effect A and/or B (both hydroxyl terminal groups).

  17. Directed self-assembly of performance materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nealey, Paul

    Directed self-assembly (DSA) is a promising strategy for high-volume cost-effective manufacturing at the nanoscale. Over the past decades, manufacturing techniques have been developed with such remarkable efficiency that it is now possible to engineer complex systems of heterogeneous materials at the scale of a few tens of nanometers. Further evolution of these techniques, however, is faced with difficult challenges not only in feasibility of implementation at scales of 10 nm and below, but also in prohibitively high capital equipment costs. Materials that self-assemble, on the other hand, spontaneously form structures at the mesoscale, but the micrometer areas or volumes over which the materials self-assemble with adequate perfection in structure is incommensurate with the macroscopic dimensions of working devices and systems of devices of industrial relevance. Directed Self-Assembly (DSA) refers to the integration of self-assembling materials with traditional manufacturing processes. Here we will discuss DSA of block copolymers to revolutionize sub 10 nm lithography and the manufacture of integrated circuits and storage media, DSA of ex-situ synthesized nanoparticles for applications in nanophotonics, and DSA of liquid crystals for advanced optics.

  18. Porous Gold Nanoparticle-Decorated Nanoreactors Prepared from Smartly Designed Functional Polystyrene-block-Poly(d,l-Lactide) Diblock Copolymers: Toward Efficient Systems for Catalytic Cascade Reaction Processes.

    PubMed

    Poupart, Romain; Benlahoues, Antoine; Le Droumaguet, Benjamin; Grande, Daniel

    2017-03-15

    Original porous catalytic supports can be engineered via an effective and straightforward synthetic route to polystyrene-block-poly(d,l-lactide) diblock copolymer precursors displaying an acid-cleavable acetal junction between both blocks. To this purpose, we synthesized an acetal-containing heterodifunctional initiator, thus enabling to combine two different polymerization methods, i.e., first atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) of styrene, and then ring-opening polymerization (ROP) of d,l-lactide. Thanks to the labile nature of the acetal junction, oriented porous frameworks could be obtained upon trifluoroacetic acid-mediated cleavage of the latter, after orientation of the block copolymer nanodomains by solvent vapor annealing. The resulting porous materials bearing a reactive aldehyde function at the pore surface allowed for further chemical modification via reductive amination with amino-containing compounds, such as tetraethylenepentamine, thus leading to amine-functionalized porous polystyrene. In situ generated gold nanoparticles could then be immobilized within such functionalized porous nanoreactors, and these hybrid materials could find interesting applications in heterogeneous supported catalysis. In this regard, model catalytic reactions, including C-C homocoupling of benzeneboronic acid derivatives, hydride-mediated reduction of nitroaromatic compounds, and especially unprecedented "one-pot" cascade reactions consisting of the latter consecutive reactions from 3-nitrobenzeneboronic acid, were successfully monitored by different chromatographic and spectroscopic techniques.

  19. Structure and Dynamics of Asymmetric Poly(styrene-b-1,4-isoprene) Diblock Copolymer under 1D and 2D Nanoconfinement.

    PubMed

    Kipnusu, Wycliffe K; Elmahdy, Mahdy M; Mapesa, Emmanuel U; Zhang, Jianqi; Böhlmann, Winfried; Smilgies, Detlef-M; Papadakis, Christine M; Kremer, Friedrich

    2015-06-17

    The impact of 1- and 2-dimensional (2D) confinement on the structure and dynamics of poly(styrene-b-1,4-isoprene) P(S-b-I) diblock copolymer is investigated by a combination of Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM), Grazing-Incidence Small-Angle X-ray Scattering (GISAXS), and Broadband Dielectric Spectroscopy (BDS). 1D confinement is achieved by spin coating the P(S-b-I) to form nanometric thin films on silicon substrates, while in the 2D confinement, the copolymer is infiltrated into cylindrical anodized aluminum oxide (AAO) nanopores. After dissolving the AAO matrix having mean pore diameter of 150 nm, the SEM images of the exposed P(S-b-I) show straight nanorods. For the thin films, GISAXS and AFM reveal hexagonally packed cylinders of PS in a PI matrix. Three dielectrically active relaxation modes assigned to the two segmental modes of the styrene and isoprene blocks and the normal mode of the latter are studied selectively by BDS. The dynamic glass transition, related to the segmental modes of the styrene and isoprene blocks, is independent of the dimensionality and the finite sizes (down to 18 nm) of confinement, but the normal mode is influenced by both factors with 2D geometrical constraints exerting greater impact. This reflects the considerable difference in the length scales on which the two kinds of fluctuations take place.

  20. 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).

  1. Virtual fabrication using directed self-assembly for process optimization in a 14-nm dynamic random access memory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kamon, Mattan; Akbulut, Mustafa; Yan, Yiguang; Faken, Daniel; Pap, Andras; Allampalli, Vasanth; Greiner, Ken; Fried, David

    2016-07-01

    For directed self-assembly (DSA) to be deployed in advanced semiconductor technologies, it must reliably integrate into a full process flow. We present a methodology for using virtual fabrication software, including predictive DSA process models, to develop and analyze the replacement of self-aligned quadruple patterning with Liu-Nealey chemoepitaxy on a 14-nm dynamic random access memory (DRAM) process. To quantify the impact of this module replacement, we investigated a key process yield metric for DRAM, interface area between the capacitor contacts and transistor source/drain. Additionally, we demonstrate virtual fabrication of the DRAM cell's hexagonally packed capacitors patterned with an array of diblock copolymer cylinders in place of fourfold litho-etch (LE4) patterning.

  2. Size Distribution and Magnetic Property of Co-Pt Dots Fabricated by Self-Assembled Polymer Mask

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kimura, Kaori; Kamata, Yoshiyuki; Isowaki, Yousuke; Kikitsu, Akira

    Co-Pt dot arrays were prepared by ion milling etching using a self-assembled diblock copolymer mask. Two samples with different diameter of 24 nm and 38 nm, and similar size dispersion of 13-14 % were fabricated. The Co-Pt dots were indicated to have damaged portion, which has reversible magnetic propertiy, from the difference between the dc-demagnetization (DCD) curve and the hysteresis curve. It is estimated that the depth of the damaged portion is about 3 nm from the sidewall surface of the dot. The Switching Field Distribution (SFD) was roughly estimated by fitting the DCD curve. The