Original Contribution

Colloid and Polymer Science

, Volume 291, Issue 9, pp 2173-2180

First online:

PI-b-PMMA diblock copolymers: nanostructure development in thin films and nanostructuring of thermosetting epoxy systems

  • I. BarandiaranAffiliated with‘Materials + Technologies’ Group, Escuela Politécnica, Dept of Chemical & Environmental Engineering, Universidad País Vasco/Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea
  • , D. KatsigiannopoulosAffiliated withDepartment of Materials Science and Engineering, University Campus-Dourouti, University of Ioannina
  • , E. GranaAffiliated withDepartment of Materials Science and Engineering, University Campus-Dourouti, University of Ioannina
  • , A. AvgeropoulosAffiliated withDepartment of Materials Science and Engineering, University Campus-Dourouti, University of Ioannina
  • , A. EceizaAffiliated with‘Materials + Technologies’ Group, Escuela Politécnica, Dept of Chemical & Environmental Engineering, Universidad País Vasco/Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea
  • , G. KortaberriaAffiliated with‘Materials + Technologies’ Group, Escuela Politécnica, Dept of Chemical & Environmental Engineering, Universidad País Vasco/Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea Email author 

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Abstract

Poly(isoprene-block-methyl methacrylate) (PI-b-PMMA) block copolymers with different block ratios have been used to generate nanostructures both in thin films and by nanostructuring a thermosetting epoxy system. Obtained morphologies have been analyzed in terms of atomic force microscopy. The nanostructuring of thin films was carried out by thermal and solvent vapor annealing, in which the copolymer films were exposed to acetone vapors, selective solvent for methyl methacrylate (PMMA) block. By solvent vapor annealing thin films of both copolymers self-assembled into a hexagonally packed cylindrical morphology. Thermal annealing was carried out above the glass transition temperature of both blocks, obtaining worm-like and lamellar morphologies, depending on the block ratio. One of the copolymers has also been used for nanostructuring an epoxy thermosetting system. Morphologies consisting of spherical-shaped PI domains dispersed in a continuous epoxy matrix in which PMMA remained miscible were obtained, independently of the copolymer amount.

Keywords

PI-b-PMMA Diblock copolymer Nanostructuring Thermal annealing Solvent vapor annealing