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Polymeric Cross-Linked Surface Treatments for Controlling Block Copolymer Orientation in Thin Films

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journal contribution
posted on 01.03.2011, 00:00 by Christopher M. Bates, Jeffrey R. Strahan, Logan J. Santos, Brennen K. Mueller, Benjamin O. Bamgbade, Jonathan A. Lee, Joshua M. Katzenstein, Christopher J. Ellison, C. Grant Willson
The orientation of cylinder-forming poly(styrene-block-methyl methacrylate) [P(S-b-MMA)] was investigated on two sets of polymeric surface treatments: 10 para-substituted polystyrene derivatives with <10 mol % poly(4-vinylbenzyl azide) and a series of poly(styrene-random-4-vinylbenzyl azide) [P(S-r-VBzAz)] copolymers with 5−100 mol % poly(4-vinylbenzyl azide). The copolymers were spin-coated to form thin films and then cross-linked by heating. The resulting films exhibited a range of surface tensions from 21 to 45 dyn/cm. Perpendicular orientation of P(S-b-MMA) cylinders was achieved with poly(p-bromostyrene) and all the [P(S-r-VBzAz)] copolymer surface treatments, most notably the homopolymer of poly(4-vinylbenzyl azide). Films made from these simple copolymers are as effective as random terpolymer alignment layers commonly made from both block monomers and a cross-linkable monomer.