PEDOT nanostructures synthesized in hexagonal mesophases†
We describe a single step preparation of nanostructures of poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene), PEDOT, in the hydrophobic domains of cationic surfactant-based hexagonal mesophases via chemical oxidative polymerization of EDOT monomers using FeCl3 as an oxidizing agent. After polymerization, the hexagonal structure of the mesophases is preserved as demonstrated by polarized light microscopy and X-ray scattering measurements. After extraction from mesophases, the chemical structure of PEDOT is confirmed by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy. Moreover, PEDOT morphology is checked by transmission and scanning electron microscopies. PEDOT nanostructures with spindle-like or vesicle-like shapes are obtained depending on the experimental conditions. In the original method, high resolution atomic force microscopy, coupled with infrared nanospectroscopy, is used to probe the local chemical composition of PEDOT nanostructures. Finally, the as-prepared PEDOT polymers are characterized by both good thermal stability up to 200 °C and a relatively high conductivity value up to 0.4 S cm−1 as determined by thermogravimetric analysis and four probe measurements respectively.