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Hydrogen bonded block copolymer systems : from microphase separation in solid state to self-assembly in aqueous solutions
conference contributionposted on 2011-01-01, 00:00 authored by Qipeng Guo, Nishar Hameed, N Salim
Block copolymer systems with hydrogen bonding interactions have received relatively little attention. Recently, we have investigated the self-assembly and phase separation in such block copolymer systems with an attempt to elucidate the role of hydrogen bonding interactions both theoretically and experimentally [1-4]. In A-b-B/C diblock copolymer/homopolymer systems, the phase behavior was theoretically analyzed according to the random phase approximation and correlated with hydrogen bonding interactions in terms of the difference in inter-association constants (K). To examine how the hydrogen bonding determines the self-assembly and morphological transitions in these systems, we have introduced the K values as a new variable into the phase diagram which we established for the first time (Fig. 1). Multiple vesicular morphologies were formed in aqueous solution of A-b-B/A-b-C diblock copolymer complexes of PS-b-PAA and PS-b-PEO. Interconnected compound vesicles (ICCVs) were observed for the first time as a new morphology (Fig. 2), along with other aggregated nanostructures including vesicles, multilamellar vesicles, thick-walled vesicles and irregular aggregates. Complexation of two amphiphilic diblock copolymers provides a viable approach to vesicles in aqueous media.