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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2009, 10(3), 805-816; doi:10.3390/ijms10030805
Article

Ordering and Reverse Ordering Mechanisms of Triblock Copolymers in the Presence of Solvent

1, 1,* , 2 and 1
1 Theoretical Division and Center for Nonlinear Studies, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, New Mexico, 87545, USA 2 Department of Physics & Astronomy, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario, N2L 3G1, Canada
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 21 January 2009 / Revised: 24 February 2009 / Accepted: 24 February 2009 / Published: 27 February 2009
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Molecular Self-Assembly)
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Abstract

Self-consistent field theory is used to study the self-assembly of a triblock copolymer melt. Two different external factors (temperature and solvent) are shown to affect the self-assembly. Either one or two-step self-assembly can be found as a function of temperature in the case of a neat triblock melt, or as a function of increasing solvent content (for non-selective solvents) in the case of a triblock-solvent mixture. For selective solvents, it is shown that increasing the solvent content leads to more complicated self-assembly mechanisms, including a reversed transition where order is found to increase instead of decreasing as expected, and re-entrant behavior where order is found to increase at first, and then decrease to a previous state of disorder.
Keywords: Triblock copolymers; self-assembly; self-consistent field theory Triblock copolymers; self-assembly; self-consistent field theory
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).
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Maniadis, P.; Rasmussen, K.O.; Thompson, R.B.; Kober, E.M. Ordering and Reverse Ordering Mechanisms of Triblock Copolymers in the Presence of Solvent. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2009, 10, 805-816.

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