Interactions between planar stiff polyelectrolyte brushes

Aaron Wynveen, Christos N. Likos

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

26 Scopus citations


Molecular-dynamics simulations were performed for two opposing flat surfaces sparsely grafted with rigid polyelectrolyte chains whose lengths are smaller than their persistence lengths. The resulting force-distance dependence was analyzed theoretically in terms of two separate physical mechanisms: the pressure arising from osmotically active counterions trapped within the brush and the work required to bend the brush chains under confinement, which can be accurately characterized by a ground-state theory of rigid polymer buckling. These contributions are of the same magnitude and should be distinguishable in experiments of double-stranded DNA brushes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number010801
JournalPhysical Review E - Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics
Issue number1
StatePublished - Aug 6 2009

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