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Title: High-throughput morphology mapping of self-assembling ternary polymer blends

Abstract

Multicomponent blending is a convenient yet powerful approach to rationally control the material structure, morphology, and functional properties in solution-deposited films of block copolymers and other self-assembling nanomaterials. However, progress in understanding the structural and morphological dependencies on blend composition is hampered by the time and labor required to synthesize and characterize a large number of discrete samples. Here, we report a new method to systematically explore a wide composition space in ternary blends. Specifically, the blend composition space is divided into gradient segments deposited sequentially on a single wafer by a new gradient electrospray deposition tool, and characterized using high-throughput grazing-incidence small-angle X-ray scattering. This method is applied to the creation of a ternary morphology diagram for a cylinder-forming polystyrene-block-poly(methyl methacrylate) (PS-b-PMMA) block copolymer blended with PS and PMMA homopolymers. Using “wet brush” homopolymers of very low molecular weight (~1 kg mol–1), we identify well-demarcated composition regions comprising highly ordered cylinder, lamellae, and sphere morphologies, as well as a disordered phase at high homopolymer mass fractions. The exquisite granularity afforded by this approach also helps to uncover systematic dependencies among self-assembled morphology, topological grain size, and domain period as functions of homopolymer mass fraction and PS : PMMA ratio.more » These results highlight the significant advantages afforded by blending low molecular weight homopolymers for block copolymer self-assembly. Meanwhile, the high-throughput, combinatorial approach to investigating nanomaterial blends introduced here dramatically reduces the time required to explore complex process parameter spaces and is a natural complement to recent advances in autonomous X-ray characterization.« less

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [2]; ORCiD logo [3]; ORCiD logo [3]
  1. Yale Univ., New Haven, CT (United States)
  2. Univ. of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA (United States)
  3. Brookhaven National Lab. (BNL), Upton, NY (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Brookhaven National Lab. (BNL), Upton, NY (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Basic Energy Sciences (BES); National Science Foundation (NSF)
OSTI Identifier:
1749898
Report Number(s):
BNL-220736-2020-JAAM
Journal ID: ISSN 2046-2069
Grant/Contract Number:  
SC0012704; DGE-1122492; CBET-1703494; DMR-1410568
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
RSC Advances
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 10; Journal Issue: 69; Journal ID: ISSN 2046-2069
Publisher:
Royal Society of Chemistry
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
77 NANOSCIENCE AND NANOTECHNOLOGY

Citation Formats

Toth, Kristof, Osuji, Chinedum O., Yager, Kevin G., and Doerk, Gregory S.. High-throughput morphology mapping of self-assembling ternary polymer blends. United States: N. p., 2020. Web. https://doi.org/10.1039/d0ra08491c.
Toth, Kristof, Osuji, Chinedum O., Yager, Kevin G., & Doerk, Gregory S.. High-throughput morphology mapping of self-assembling ternary polymer blends. United States. https://doi.org/10.1039/d0ra08491c
Toth, Kristof, Osuji, Chinedum O., Yager, Kevin G., and Doerk, Gregory S.. Tue . "High-throughput morphology mapping of self-assembling ternary polymer blends". United States. https://doi.org/10.1039/d0ra08491c. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1749898.
@article{osti_1749898,
title = {High-throughput morphology mapping of self-assembling ternary polymer blends},
author = {Toth, Kristof and Osuji, Chinedum O. and Yager, Kevin G. and Doerk, Gregory S.},
abstractNote = {Multicomponent blending is a convenient yet powerful approach to rationally control the material structure, morphology, and functional properties in solution-deposited films of block copolymers and other self-assembling nanomaterials. However, progress in understanding the structural and morphological dependencies on blend composition is hampered by the time and labor required to synthesize and characterize a large number of discrete samples. Here, we report a new method to systematically explore a wide composition space in ternary blends. Specifically, the blend composition space is divided into gradient segments deposited sequentially on a single wafer by a new gradient electrospray deposition tool, and characterized using high-throughput grazing-incidence small-angle X-ray scattering. This method is applied to the creation of a ternary morphology diagram for a cylinder-forming polystyrene-block-poly(methyl methacrylate) (PS-b-PMMA) block copolymer blended with PS and PMMA homopolymers. Using “wet brush” homopolymers of very low molecular weight (~1 kg mol–1), we identify well-demarcated composition regions comprising highly ordered cylinder, lamellae, and sphere morphologies, as well as a disordered phase at high homopolymer mass fractions. The exquisite granularity afforded by this approach also helps to uncover systematic dependencies among self-assembled morphology, topological grain size, and domain period as functions of homopolymer mass fraction and PS : PMMA ratio. These results highlight the significant advantages afforded by blending low molecular weight homopolymers for block copolymer self-assembly. Meanwhile, the high-throughput, combinatorial approach to investigating nanomaterial blends introduced here dramatically reduces the time required to explore complex process parameter spaces and is a natural complement to recent advances in autonomous X-ray characterization.},
doi = {10.1039/d0ra08491c},
journal = {RSC Advances},
number = 69,
volume = 10,
place = {United States},
year = {2020},
month = {11}
}

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