Defining Morphological Transformations of “Soft Nature” Diblock Viscoelastic Structured Polymers

Ioannis Moutsios, Konstantinos Ntetsikas, Gkreti Maria Manesi, George Liontos, Evgeniia A. Nikitina, Cheng-Yen Chang, Loic Vidal, Nikos Hadjichristidis, Rong-Ming Ho, Dimitri A. Ivanov, Apostolos Avgeropoulos

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Structured diblock copolymer liquids consisting exclusively of “soft” segments with glass-transition temperatures well below room temperature have not been studied extensively in the literature in terms of self-assembly properties to date. Despite their “soft nature”, these types of diblock copolymers are capable of forming well-ordered topologies at low temperatures. This ability is attributed to their low dispersity indices (Đ) and relatively high Flory–Huggins interaction parameter, χ, between the chemically different involved blocks. Herein, we report a comprehensive study of the synthesized copolymers on molecular and thermal characterization, along with the structure–property relationship of two types of polydiene-b-polysiloxane copolymers by manipulating the monomer’s ratio during synthesis. Emphasis was given to the self-assembly behavior when the molecular characteristics (volume fraction and degree of polymerization) of the involved blocks varied to assess the limits of the phase stability. Specially, poly(butadiene) (PB1,2) or poly(isoprene) (PI1,4) was utilized as the first segment, while poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS) was used as the second block in all cases. The molecular characteristics’ diversity combined with the ability to design/synthesize block copolymers with well-ordered phases ranging from spheres, cylinders, lamellar, and finally network structures is quite promising for nanotechnology applications in soft electronics. Also, the inherent properties of the copolymers, such as thermal stability, hydrophobicity, and flexibility, render them potential candidates for stretchable and/or wearable applications.
Original languageEnglish (US)
StatePublished - Aug 11 2023

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2023-09-01
Acknowledgements: This research was funded by the Ministry of Science and Higher Education of the Russian Federation within State Contract 075-15-2022-1105. The research work was partially supported by the Hellenic Foundation for Research and Innovation (HFRI), under the HFRI PhD Fellowship grant (fellowship no. 1650). I.M., K.N., G.-M.M., and A.A. would like to acknowledge the Network of Research Supporting Laboratories at the University of Ioannina for using the Electron Microscopy Facility and the Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy Center.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Inorganic Chemistry


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