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Supramolecular Hydrophobic Aggregates in Hydrogels Partially Inhibit Ice Formation

Published

Author(s)

Clinton G. Wiener, Madhu Sudan Tyagi, Yun Liu, R. A. Weiss, Bryan D. Vogt

Abstract

Prevention of ice crystallization is a challenging problem with implications in diverse applications, including the ability to examine the fundamental low temperature physics of water. Here, we demonstrate a simple route, inspired by water confinement in antifreeze proteins, to inhibit crystallization and provide high water mobility of highly supercooled water using a soft matter based on supramolecular hydrogels of copolymers of dimethylacrylamide (DMA) and 2-(N-ethylperfluorooctane sulfonamide)ethyl acrylate (FOSA). These hydrogels can suppress or inhibit freezing of their water, depending on the copolymer composition. Dynamic and static neutron scattering indicate that hydrogels with > 15 mol% FOSA can effectively inhibit ice formation. The hydrophobic nanodomains of FOSA confine water to nanoscale hydrophilic regions (<2 nm) and enable unfrozen water to persist to the lowest temperatures examined (205K). More intriguingly, very fast dynamics of the unfrozen water are observed at 295 K within the same hydrogel. The spacing between the hydrophobic nanodomains, tuned through the copolymer composition, appears to modulate the freezing of water and provides a facile route to highly supercooled water.
Citation
Journal of Physical Chemistry B
Volume
120
Issue
24

Keywords

Neutron scattering, hydrogel, water dynamics

Citation

Wiener, C. , Tyagi, M. , Liu, Y. , Weiss, R. and Vogt, B. (2016), Supramolecular Hydrophobic Aggregates in Hydrogels Partially Inhibit Ice Formation, Journal of Physical Chemistry B, [online], https://tsapps.nist.gov/publication/get_pdf.cfm?pub_id=921008 (Accessed June 24, 2024)

Issues

If you have any questions about this publication or are having problems accessing it, please contact reflib@nist.gov.

Created June 22, 2016, Updated October 12, 2021