Structural characterization of aqueous solution poly(oligo(ethylene oxide) monomethyl methacrylate)-grafted silica nanoparticles†
The structure of aqueous dispersions of poly(oligo(ethylene oxide) monomethyl methacrylate)-grafted silica nanoparticles was characterized using contrast variation small-angle neutron scattering studies. Modeling the low hybrid concentration dispersion scattering data using a fuzzy sphere and a polydisperse core–shell model, demonstrated that the polymer chains are highly swollen in the dispersions as compared to the dimensions of the free polymer chains in dilute solution. At higher hybrid concentrations, the dispersions were well described using a Percus–Yevick approximation to describe the structure factor. These structural characterization tools are excellent starting points for effective molecular level descriptors of dewetting and macroscopic phase transitions for polymer tethered hybrid nanoparticle systems.
- This article is part of the themed collection: Nanoparticle Assembly: From Fundamentals to Applications