Molecular weight distribution effect on the morphological behavior of polystyrene-block-polyisoprene (PS-b-PI) diblock copolymers was investigated. PS-b-PI samples were prepared by anionic polymerization and further fractionated by HPLC to obtain the fractions of similar average molecular weight and composition but of narrower distributions in both molecular weight and composition. The strategy is to use reversed-phase LC to fractionate the PI block and normal phase LC to fractionate the PS block with a minimal effect on the other blocks. The interfacial thickness, grain size and the phase transition behavior of the unfractionated and fractionated PS-b-PI were compared by X-ray reflectivity, small angle X-ray scattering, transmission electron microscopy and rheological measurements. The fractionated PS-b-PI with more homogeneous molecular weight and composition exhibits a narrower interface, larger grain size and a sharper morphological transition compared to the unfractionated PS-b-PI.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Organic Chemistry
- Polymers and Plastics
- Materials Chemistry