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Polymer-grafted Nanoparticles (PGN) and PGN Arrays with Tailored Canopy Interactions

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The research reported here focused on developing a new synthesis strategy to enable scaleup of polymer-grafted nanoparticles PGNs using an environmentally friendly grafting from polymerization approach. This work described in this report was built on studies earlier in this program that developed new methods of emulation polymerization using living radical polymerization. Ludox is a family of commercially available silica SiO2 nanoparticles with a narrow size distribution, making it an excellent model choice to develop a highly scalable synthesis process. The Ludox-TM 40 nanoparticles 26 nmused in this work were first modified with an atom transfer radical polymerization initiator ATRP. Subsequently, SiO2-polystyrene and SiO2-polymethyl methacrylate PGNs were synthesized in an aqueous mini-emulsion without the use of an organic solvent. Through the simultaneous addition of monomer and reducing agent, both the graft density and the molecular weight of the grafted polymer chains could be readily controlled. Furthermore, it was found that the directed localization of the polymerization in micelles can prevent the formation of unwanted side products, such as ungrafted polymer chains. The approach developed allows for the first time the efficient synthesis of PGNs of a broad variety of polymer compositions with a homogeneous polymer corona on a multigram scale.

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Technical Report,01 Feb 2017,31 Jan 2020



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