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Open AccessArticle

Design of a pH-Responsive Conductive Nanocomposite Based on MWCNTs Stabilized in Water by Amphiphilic Block Copolymers

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Department of Chemical Engineering—Product Technology, University of Groningen, Nijenborgh 4, 9747 AG Groningen, The Netherlands
2
Department of Chemistry and Industrial Chemistry, University of Pisa, Via Giuseppe Moruzzi 13, 56124 Pisa (PI), Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nanomaterials 2019, 9(10), 1410; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9101410
Received: 9 August 2019 / Revised: 30 August 2019 / Accepted: 30 September 2019 / Published: 3 October 2019
Homogeneous water dispersions of multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) were prepared by ultrasonication in the presence of an amphiphilic polystyrene-block-poly(acrylic acid) (PS-b-PAA) copolymer. The ability of PS-b-PAA to disperse and stabilize MWCTNs was investigated by UV-vis, SEM and zeta potential. The results show that the addition of a styrene block to PAA enhances the dispersion efficiency of the graphitic filler compared to pure PAA, possibly due to the nanotube affinity with the polystyrene moiety. Notably, the dispersions show an evident pH-responsive behavior, being MWCNTs reaggregation promoted in basic environment. It is worth noting that the responsive character is maintained in solid composites obtained by drop casting, thus indicating potential applications in sensing.
Keywords: amphiphilic block copolymers; carbon nanotubes; stimuli responsive; conductive composite amphiphilic block copolymers; carbon nanotubes; stimuli responsive; conductive composite
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MDPI and ACS Style

den Hoed, F.; Pucci, A.; Picchioni, F.; Raffa, P. Design of a pH-Responsive Conductive Nanocomposite Based on MWCNTs Stabilized in Water by Amphiphilic Block Copolymers. Nanomaterials 2019, 9, 1410.

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