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Using block copolymer architecture to achieve sub-10 nm periods

Sun, Zhiwei; Zhang, Wenxu; Hong, Song; Chen, Zhenbin; Liu, Xiaohui; Xiao, Shuaigang; Coughlin, E. Bryan; Russell, Thomas P.

By 12 March 2019No Comments

Polymer, 2017, vol 121pp. 297-303

DOI:10.1016/j.polymer.2017.06.007

Abstract

Using salt-doped polystyrene-b-poly(2-vinylpyridine) star shaped block copolymer as a model, we show that the architecture of (A-b-B)n type multi-arm star block copolymers enhances the ordering of the block copolymers, enabling the generation of nanostructures with microdomain periods less than 10 nm. The influence of the arm number on the order-to-disorder transition temperature and molecular weight was systematically studied using small angle X-ray scattering. The configurational constraints placed on the chains by anchoring each block copolymer to a central junction point have a significant effect on the disorder-to-order transition behavior. In addition to an increase in the Flory-Huggins parameter (χ), block copolymers with multi-arm star shape chain architecture have a critical segregation strength (χN)C that decreases with arm number, opening a simple route to generate ordered nanostructures with periods below 10 nm.

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