Fabrication and nanoscale properties of PEDOT:PSS conducting polymer nanospheres†
Electrically conducting nanospheres of poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):poly(styrene sulfonate) (PEDOT:PSS) with tailored size were prepared using a solvent displacement technique. To fabricate these nanostructures, dried PEDOT:PSS was dissolved in ethylene glycol (EG) and the solution was precipitated in deionized water. The proposed fabrication route allowed obtaining a water-based dispersion of PEDOT:PSS nanospheres with good optical properties. To determine the physical properties of the nanospheres, we followed a nanoscale approach, using atomic force microscopy. Our nanoscale mechanical and electrical investigations showed that the nanospheres retained good physical and conductivity properties, compared to the commercial product. Moreover, the local studies indicated that the reprecipitation process and the spherical shape lead to a different arrangement of the PSS and PEDOT phases.