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Polymers 2016, 8(9), 328; doi:10.3390/polym8090328

Stretching a Semiflexible Polymer in a Tube

Key Laboratory of Mechanics on Disaster and Environment in Western China, Ministry of Education, College of Civil Engineering and Mechanics, Lanzhou University, Lanzhou 730000, Gansu, China
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Academic Editor: Martin Kröger
Received: 31 May 2016 / Revised: 9 August 2016 / Accepted: 26 August 2016 / Published: 9 September 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Semiflexible Polymers)
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Abstract

How the statistical behavior of semiflexible polymer chains may be affected by force stretching and tube confinement is a classical unsolved problem in polymer physics. Based on the Odijk deflection theory and normal mode decomposition in terms of Fourier expansion, we have derived a new compact formula for the extension of a wormlike chain of finite length strongly confined in a tube and simultaneously stretched by an external force. We have also suggested a new deflection length, which together with the force-extension relation is valid for a very extended range of the tube-diameter/persistence-length ratio comparing to the classic Odijk theory. The newly derived formula has no adjustable fitting parameters for the whole deflection regime; in contrast, the classic Odijk length needs different prefactors to fit the free energy and average extension, respectively. Brownian dynamics simulations based on the Generalized Bead-Rod (GBR) model were extensively performed, which justified the theoretical predictions. View Full-Text
Keywords: wormlike chain model; tube confinement; Odijk length; stretch; GBR model; Brownian dynamics simulation wormlike chain model; tube confinement; Odijk length; stretch; GBR model; Brownian dynamics simulation
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Li, R.; Wang, J. Stretching a Semiflexible Polymer in a Tube. Polymers 2016, 8, 328.

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