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Issue 11, 2011
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Self-consistent field theory for diblock copolymers grafted to a sphere

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Abstract

An efficient numerical self-consistent field theory (SCFT) algorithm is developed for treating structured polymers on spherical surfaces. The method solves the diffusion equations of SCFT with a pseudo-spectral approach that combines a spherical-harmonics expansion for the angular coordinates with a modified real-space Crank–Nicolson method for the radial direction. The self-consistent field equations are solved with Anderson-mixing iterations using dynamical parameters and an alignment procedure to prevent angular drift of the solution. A demonstration of the algorithm is provided for thin films of diblock copolymer grafted to the surface of a spherical core, in which the sequence of equilibrium morphologies is predicted as a function of diblock composition. The study reveals an array of interesting behaviors as the block copolymer pattern is forced to adapt to the finite surface area of the sphere.

Graphical abstract: Self-consistent field theory for diblock copolymers grafted to a sphere

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Publication details

The article was received on 02 Nov 2010, accepted on 12 Jan 2011 and first published on 17 Feb 2011


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C0SM01242D
Citation: Soft Matter, 2011,7, 5128-5137
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    Self-consistent field theory for diblock copolymers grafted to a sphere

    B. Vorselaars, J. U. Kim, T. L. Chantawansri, G. H. Fredrickson and M. W. Matsen, Soft Matter, 2011, 7, 5128
    DOI: 10.1039/C0SM01242D

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