American Chemical Society
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Single Chain Asymmetric Block Copolymers in Poor Solvents. Candidates for Patchy Colloids

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journal contribution
posted on 2011-08-09, 00:00 authored by Ryan M. Holmes, David R. M. Williams
Single chain block copolymers in poor solvents with asymmetric A and B species block lengths form an interesting and potentially useful set of conformations not yet fully investigated by the literature. Self-consistent field theory simulations performed in this work predict that the chains collapse to form a sphere of the species with longer blocks surrounded by various surface domains of the species with shorter blocks. A simple free energy scaling model describes this formation and provides an alternative prediction of the number of such surface domains formed for a large range of polymer parameters. The model and simulation predictions of the number of surface domains agree well for the majority of cases, and best for highly asymmetric polymer chains. The authors believe that these highly asymmetric polymer chains are candidates for building patchy colloid like particles, as they form balls with a controllable number of surface patches.