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Effect of temperature on the structure and dynamics of triblock copolymer coacervate hydrogels



Vivek M. Prabhu, Ryan C. Nieuwendaal, Anand Rahalkar, Juan J. DePablo, Samanvaya Srivastava, Matthew Tirrell


Triblock copolymer coacervate gels were characterized by small-angle neutron scattering (SANS) and dynamic light scattering. The oppositely charged polyelectrolyte complex core size does not change with temperature. However, the neutral middle block that comprises the micelle corona as well as inter-micelle bridges displays a temperature-dependent conformation. The liquid- like order of these micelles leads to stretched bridging chains that approach their unperturbed dimensions with increasing concentration. A further reduction in this stretch ratio occurs with increasing temperature due to solvent quality. Dynamic light scattering observes multiple modes consistent with collective diffusion and slow diffusion of clusters. The dynamics of these clusters are at length scales associated with the SANS excess scattering, but with relaxation time near the cross-over frequency observed by mechanical spectroscopy.
Journal of Chemical Physics


Prabhu, V. , Nieuwendaal, R. , Rahalkar, A. , DePablo, J. , Srivastava, S. and Tirrell, M. (2018), Effect of temperature on the structure and dynamics of triblock copolymer coacervate hydrogels, Journal of Chemical Physics, [online], (Accessed July 18, 2024)


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Created July 16, 2018, Updated February 12, 2020