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Nano-porous structures via self-assembly of amphiphilic triblock copolymers: influence of solvent and molecular weight

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Abstract

Control of film structures made from a polystyrene-polystyrene sodium sulfonate-polystyrene (PS-PNaSS-PS) copolymer micellar solution is investigated in a THF/water mixture. Four different copolymers (varying molecular weights) are synthesised via RAFT (Reversible Addition Fragmentation chain Transfer) polymerisation. Depending on parameters such as copolymer molecular weight, solvent composition and copolymer concentration, the PS-PNaSS-PS triblock self-assembles into different morphologies in solution and dry state. The effect of each parameter is investigated using characterization techniques such as AFM, TEM, Cryo-TEM, SEM and SAXS. The morphologies obtained for PS-PNaSS-PS are found to be extremely sensitive when the water content of the micellar solution is low. Among the structures observed, a highly ordered nano-porous film is obtained using a PS10k-PNaSS6k-PS10k triblock copolymer solution containing 3.0 wt% of water. This micellar solution is used to prepare a porous membrane for filtration applications. Pure water filtration data suggest a pore size in the range of ultrafiltration, making these membranes attractive for applications in the food industry, for bacteria, virus and protein removal.

Graphical abstract: Nano-porous structures via self-assembly of amphiphilic triblock copolymers: influence of solvent and molecular weight

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Publication details

The article was received on 03 Nov 2017, accepted on 29 Nov 2017 and first published on 01 Dec 2017


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C7PY01853C
Citation: Polym. Chem., 2018, Advance Article
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    Nano-porous structures via self-assembly of amphiphilic triblock copolymers: influence of solvent and molecular weight

    S. Nehache, M. Semsarilar, A. Deratani, M. In, P. Dieudonné-George, J. Lai Kee Him, P. Bron and D. Quémener, Polym. Chem., 2018, Advance Article , DOI: 10.1039/C7PY01853C

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