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Polymers 2016, 8(12), 409; doi:10.3390/polym8120409

What Happens When Threading is Suppressed in Blends of Ring and Linear Polymers?

Department of Scientific Computing, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL 32306, USA
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Academic Editor: Martin Kröger
Received: 27 October 2016 / Revised: 15 November 2016 / Accepted: 18 November 2016 / Published: 25 November 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Semiflexible Polymers)
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Abstract

Self-diffusivity of a large tracer ring polymer, D r , immersed in a matrix of linear polymers with N l monomers each shows unusual length dependence. D r initially increases, and then decreases with increasing N l . To understand the relationship between the nonmonotonic variation in D r and threading by matrix chains, we perform equilibrium Monte Carlo simulations of ring-linear blends in which the uncrossability of ring and linear polymer contours is switched on (non-crossing), or artificially turned off (crossing). The D r 6 . 2 × 10 7 N l 2 / 3 obtained from the crossing simulations, provides an upper bound for the D r obtained for the regular, non-crossing simulations. The center-of-mass mean-squared displacement ( g 3 ( t ) ) curves for the crossing simulations are consistent with the Rouse model; we find g 3 ( t ) = 6 D r t . Analysis of the polymer structure indicates that the smaller matrix chains are able to infiltrate the space occupied by the ring probe more effectively, which is dynamically manifested as a larger frictional drag per ring monomer. View Full-Text
Keywords: ring polymer; cyclic polymer; diffusion; probe diffusion; polymer blend; Monte Carlo simulation ring polymer; cyclic polymer; diffusion; probe diffusion; polymer blend; Monte Carlo simulation
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Crysup, B.; Shanbhag, S. What Happens When Threading is Suppressed in Blends of Ring and Linear Polymers? Polymers 2016, 8, 409.

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