Nanoporous Thermosets with Percolating Pores from Block Polymers Chemically Fixed above the Order-Disorder Transition

Thomas Vidil, Nicholas Hampu, Marc A. Hillmyer

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Abstract

A lamellar diblock polymer combining a cross-linkable segment with a chemically etchable segment was cross-linked above its order-disorder temperature (TODT) to kinetically trap the morphology associated with the fluctuating disordered state. After removal of the etchable block, evaluation of the resulting porous thermoset allows for an unprecedented experimental characterization of the trapped disordered phase. Through a combination of small-angle X-ray scattering, nitrogen sorption, scanning electron microscopy, and electron tomography experiments we demonstrate that the nanoporous structure exhibits a narrow pore size distribution and a high surface to volume ratio and is bicontinuous over a large sample area. Together with the processability of the polymeric starting material, the proposed system combines attractive attributes for many advanced applications. In particular, it was used to design new composite membranes for the ultrafiltration of water.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1114-1120
Number of pages7
JournalACS Central Science
Volume3
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 25 2017

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