Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 431289
Title Collapse of polyelectrolyte star. Theory and modelling
Author(s) Rud, O.V.; Mercurieva, A.A.; Leermakers, F.A.M.; Birshtein, T.M.
Source Macromolecules 45 (2012)4. - ISSN 0024-9297 - p. 2145 - 2160.
Department(s) Physical Chemistry and Colloid Science
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2012
Keyword(s) branched polyelectrolytes - homopolymer globule - copolymer micelles - block-copolymers - polymer brushes - conformations - layer - macromolecules - surfaces - solvent
Abstract The collapse of hydrophobic polyelectrolyte stars in aqueous solutions is studied using the Scheutjens–Fleer self-consistent field (SF-SCF) approach. The hydrophobic property of the segments tends to compact the stars, whereas the presence of charges has the opposite effect. As a result, star conformations can be switched from an extended, strongly hydrated, and swollen state to a collapsed state via semicollapsed, quasi-micellar state using control parameters such as the solvent quality, specified by the Flory–Huggins parameter, the pH value or the ionic strength. More specifically, there exists a range of parameters wherein the stars have an inhomogeneous radial structure with a collapsed region, referred to as the core, and a swollen region forming the corona. In such microphase segregated state the fraction of arms of the star that form the core, or alternatively escape into the swollen corona, can be controlled. The SF-SCF analysis is complemented with analytical models to rationalize the complex phase behavior.
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