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Hypothesis: Solid-state polymer adsorption offers a distinct approach for surface modification. These ultrathin, so-called Guiselin layers can easily be obtained by placing a polymer melt in contact with an interface, followed by a removal of the non-adsorbed layer with a good solvent. While the mechanism of formation has been well established for Guiselin layers, their stability, crucial from the perspective of materials applications, is not. The stability is a trade-off in the entropic penalty between cooperative detachment of the number of segments directly adsorbed on the substrate and consecutively pinned monomers.
Experiments: Experimental model systems of Guiselin layers of polystyrene (PS) on silicon wafers with native oxide layer on top were employed. The stability of the adsorbed layers was studied as a function of PS molecular weight and polydispersibility by various microscopic and spectroscopic tools as well as quasi-static contact angle measurements.
Findings: Adsorbed layers from low molecular weight PS were disrupted with typical spinodal decomposition patterns whereas high molecular weight (>500 kDa) PS resulted in stable, continuous layers. Moreover, we show that Guiselin layers offer an enticing way to modify a surface, as demonstrated by adsorbed PS that imparts a hydrophobic character to initially hydrophilic silicon wafers.
- Contact angle
- Polymer adsorption
- Silicon wafers
- Surface modification
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- 2 Finished
STRONGAD: Strongly adsorbed polymer layers for modification of cellulose surfaces towards new functional materials
01/01/2019 → 31/12/2020
Project: Other external funding: Other foreign funding
01/05/2018 → 31/12/2022
Project: Academy of Finland: Other research funding