Conformational Asymmetry and Quasicrystal Approximants in Linear Diblock Copolymers

Morgan W. Schulze, Ronald M. Lewis, James H. Lettow, Robert J. Hickey, Timothy M. Gillard, Marc A. Hillmyer, Frank S. Bates

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Small angle x-ray scattering experiments on three model low molar mass diblock copolymer systems containing minority polylactide and majority hydrocarbon blocks demonstrate that conformational asymmetry stabilizes the Frank-Kasper σ phase. Differences in block flexibility compete with space filling at constant density inducing the formation of polyhedral shaped particles that assemble into this low symmetry ordered state with local tetrahedral coordination. These results confirm predictions from self-consistent field theory that establish the origins of symmetry breaking in the ordering of block polymer melts subjected to compositional and conformational asymmetry.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number207801
JournalPhysical review letters
Issue number20
StatePublished - May 16 2017

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The Dow Chemical Company and Northwestern University. Use of the APS, an Office of Science User Facility operated for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science by Argonne National Laboratory, was supported by the U.S. DOE under Contract No.DE-AC02-06CH11357. Data were collected using an instrument funded by the National Science Foundation under Grant No.0960140.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 American Physical Society.

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