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Title: Thermodynamics and morphology of linear multiblock copolymers at homopolymer interfaces
Block copolymers at homopolymer interfaces are poised to play a critical role in the compatibilization of mixed plastic waste, an area of growing importance as the rate of plastic accumulation rapidly increases. Using molecular dynamics simulations of Kremer–Grest polymer chains, we have investigated how the number of blocks and block degree of polymerization in a linear multiblock copolymer impacts the interface thermodynamics of strongly segregated homopolymer blends, which is key to effective compatibilization. The second virial coefficient reveals that interface thermodynamics are more sensitive to block degree of polymerization than to the number of blocks. Moreover, we identify a strong correlation between surface pressure (reduction of interfacial tension) and the spatial uniformity of block junctions on the interface, yielding a morphological framework for interpreting the role of compatibilizer architecture (number of blocks) and block degree of polymerization. These results imply that, especially at high interfacial loading, the choice of architecture of a linear multiblock copolymer compatibilizing surfactant does not greatly affect the modification of interfacial tension.  more » « less
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Publisher / Repository:
AIP Publishing
Date Published:
Journal Name:
The Journal of Chemical Physics
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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