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Title: Molecular and morphological characterization of midblock-sulfonated styrenic triblock copolymers

Midblock-sulfonated triblock copolymers afford a desirable opportunity to generate network-forming amphiphilic materials that are suitable for use in a wide range of emerging technologies as fuel-cell, water-desalination, ion-exchange, photovoltaic, or electroactive membranes. Employing a previously reported synthetic strategy wherein poly( p- tert-butylstyrene) remains unreactive, we have selectively sulfonated the styrenic midblock of a poly( p- tert-butylstyrene- b-styrene- b- p- tert- butylstyrene) (TST) triblock copolymer to different extents. Comparison of the resulting sulfonated copolymers with results from our prior study provides favorable quantitative agreement and suggests that a shortened reaction time is advantageous. An ongoing challenge regarding the morphological development of charged block copolymers is the competition between microphase separation of the incompatible blocks and physical cross-linking of ionic clusters, with the latter often hindering the former. Here, we expose the sulfonated TST copolymers to solvent-vapor annealing to promote nanostructural refinement. Furthermore, the effect of such annealing on morphological characteristics, as well as on molecular free volume, is explored.
 [1] ;  [1] ;  [2] ;  [3] ;  [1]
  1. North Carolina State Univ., Raleigh, NC (United States)
  2. Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States)
  3. The Procter & Gamble Co., Cincinnati, OH (United States)
Publication Date:
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Journal of Polymer Science. Part B, Polymer Physics
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 55; Journal Issue: 6; Journal ID: ISSN 0887-6266
Research Org:
Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
North Carolina State University; National Science Foundation (NSF); USDOE Office of Science (SC)
Country of Publication:
United States
36 MATERIALS SCIENCE; block copolymers; ionomers; morphology; TEM; SAXS; self-assembly
OSTI Identifier: