TUNABLE SURFACES USING SURFACE ENERGY GRADIENTS IN MICROPATTERNED SELF-ASSEMBLED MONOLAYER LIBRARIES

 

Kirsten L. Genson, Kirk Page, Michael J. Fasolka, Matthew Becker

Polymers Division, National Institute of Standards and Technology, Gaithersburg, MD 20899 USA

 

The morphology and behavior of nanostructured polymeric materials, e.g. for biotechnology and organic electronics applications, are governed by a multitude of factors, including composition, processing and physical parameters.  By accelerating experimentation, combinatorial and high-throughput methods can help researchers assess these large parameter spaces and meet the fast pace of nanotechnology development.  We have been working to design combinatorial surface libraries that will help advance nanostructured materials development.  In particular, we combine a gradient in surface chemistry and micropatterning techniques for self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) to create combinatorial libraries to screen for properties such as inversion points in block copolymer systems or cell adhesion in biological systems.  The surface energy gradient is tailored for specific materials chemistry in addition to modifying micropatterns for different geometry, thus broadening the scope of gradient and patterned substrates for high-throughput measurements existing today.  Our calibrated libraries are analyzed using surface probe microscopy (SPM), X-ray photoelectron spectrometry (XPS), and water contact angle measurements.