The influence of arm composition on the self-assembly of low-functionality telechelic star polymers in dilute solutions

Esmaeel Moghimi, Iurii Chubak, Dimitra Founta, Konstantinos Ntetsikas, Georgios Polymeropoulos, Nikos Hadjichristidis, Christos N. Likos, Dimitris Vlassopoulos

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1 Scopus citations

Abstract

We combine synthesis, physical experiments, and computer simulations to investigate self-assembly patterns of low-functionality telechelic star polymers (TSPs) in dilute solutions. In particular, in this work, we focus on the effect of the arm composition and length on the static and dynamic properties of TSPs, whose terminal blocks are subject to worsening solvent quality upon reducing the temperature. We find two populations, single stars and clusters, that emerge upon worsening the solvent quality of the outer block. For both types of populations, their spatial extent decreases with temperature, with the specific details (such as temperature at which the minimal size is reached) depending on the coupling between inter- and intra-molecular associations as well as their strength. The experimental results are in very good qualitative agreement with coarse-grained simulations, which offer insights into the mechanism of thermoresponsive behavior of this class of materials.
Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalColloid and Polymer Science
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 25 2020

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