Ordered poly(ethylene)-poly(vinylcyclohexane) (PE-PVCH) block copolymers are employed to study the crystallization of tethered PE in confined geometries. The high Tg of the PVCH component of these materials forces PE chains to crystallize in well-defined geometries dictated by the mesophase structure of the block copolymer. Effects of chain tethering on crystallization are examined through comparison of singly-tethered PE chains in PE-PVCH (EV) diblocks and doubly-tethered PE in PVCH-PE-PVCH (VEV) triblocks. Crystallinity is independent of the block copolymer mesophase structure in both the EV and VEV systems, although crystallinity in VEV depends on the molecular weight of the PE block of the copolymer. Melting temperature data indicate that spatial confinement reduces crystallite size in EV and VEV, and that the double tethering of PE chains in VEV reduces crystallite size further through topological constraints. Crystal nucleation and growth depend strongly on the type of microstructure in both EV and VEV block copolymers. Differences in the overall rate of crystallization are correlated with the dimensional continuity of the PE microdomains.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||16|
|Journal||Journal of Polymer Science, Part B: Polymer Physics|
|State||Published - Aug 15 1999|