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Structural Changes of Diblock Copolymer Melts Due to an External Electric Field: A Self-Consistent-Field Theory Study
 

Summary: Structural Changes of Diblock Copolymer Melts Due to an External
Electric Field: A Self-Consistent-Field Theory Study
Chin-Yet Lin* and M. Schick
Department of Physics, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington 98195-1560
David Andelman
School of Physics and Astronomy, Raymond and Beverly Faculty of Exact Sciences,
Tel Aviv University, Ramat Aviv 69978, Tel Aviv, Israel
Received February 25, 2005; Revised Manuscript Received April 29, 2005
ABSTRACT: We study the phase behavior of diblock copolymers in the presence of an external electric
field. We employ self-consistent-field theory and treat the relevant Maxwell equation as an additional
self-consistent equation. Because we do not treat the electric field perturbatively, we can examine its
effects even when its magnitude is large. The electric field couples to the system's morphology only through
the difference between the dielectric constants of the two blocks. We find that an external field aligns a
body-centered-cubic phase along the (111) direction, reducing its symmetry group to R3hm. Transitions
between this phase and the disordered or hexagonal phases can occur for external electric fields ranging
from a minimum to a maximum value beyond which the R3hm phase disappears completely. This electric
field range depends on diblock architecture and temperature. We present several cuts through the phase
diagram in the space of temperature, architecture, and applied field, including one applicable to a system
recently studied.
I. Introduction

  

Source: Andelman, David - School of Physics and Astronomy, Tel Aviv University

 

Collections: Materials Science; Physics