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Surface adsorption of polar end-functionalised polystyrenes

Narrainen, A.P.; Clarke, N.; Eggleston, S.M.; Hutchings, L.R.; Thompson, R.L.


A.P. Narrainen

N. Clarke

S.M. Eggleston


Due to their inherently high surface energy, polar end-functionalised polymers do not normally adsorb to the external surfaces of blends. However, adsorption of polar functionalities can be induced rapidly by annealing in a polar environment such as glycerol prior to quenching to a glassy state. Blended films of carboxy end-functionalised deuteriopolystyrene (dPS-COOH) with hydrogenous polystyrene (hPS) were annealed at 150 °C under glycerol. Nuclear reaction analysis was used to quantify the surface excess of dPS-COOH retained at the surface after quenching the films to below the glass transition temperature. Incorporation of multiple COOH groups onto a single chain end greatly increases the affinity of these chains to the interface with glycerol. Here we have shown that even a difunctional material, dPS-2COOH, is much more surface active than either the singly functionalised dPS-COOH or the difunctional ester from which it was prepared. Self-consistent mean field theory yielded thermodynamic sticking energy values per functionality at the polystyrene–glycerol surface of 1.3–1.7 kBT for carboxy groups and 0.3 kBT for ester groups.


Narrainen, A., Clarke, N., Eggleston, S., Hutchings, L., & Thompson, R. (2006). Surface adsorption of polar end-functionalised polystyrenes. Soft Matter, 2(11), 981-985.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Aug 1, 2006
Deposit Date Sep 25, 2008
Journal Soft Matter
Print ISSN 1744-683X
Electronic ISSN 1744-6848
Publisher Royal Society of Chemistry
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 2
Issue 11
Pages 981-985