The Melt Morphology of Polystyrene Polyethylene Oxide Metallo-Supramolecular Diblock Copolymer

Al-Hussein, Mahmoud; Lohmeijer, Bas G. G.; Schubert, Ulrich S.; de Jeu, Wim H.
The capability of block copolymers to self-assemble into nanoscale structures makes them of great importance in the field of nanotechnology. Conventional block copolymers are composed of two or more chemically distinct macromolecules which are linked together through covalent bonds. Recently, some of us have developed a new strategy to synthesize block copolymers that combines both supramolecular and polymer chemistry. In this scheme, a metal-ligand complex is used as a supramolecular linker between the different macromolecules of the copolymer. This gives rise to metallo-supramolecular block copolymers that offer several advantages compared with their conventional counterparts. The reversibility of the supramolecular bond potentially allows an improved control of the material properties. Moreover, the presence of a metal complex in the copolymer structure introduces additional electrochemical, photochemical, and redox properties. Generally, the incorporation of inorganic nanoparticles in block copolymers holds the potential of creating new materials such as high-density nanomagnetic materials or photonic crystals. Most of the attempts in this direction rely on chemical or physical interactions between one of the blocks and the inorganic particle. This, usually, requires the synthesis of a special block copolymer. In the case of metallo-supramolecular block copolymers, however, the metal ion is an integral part of the polymer chain itself.
Type of Publication:
9281 – 9284