Dynamical behavior of a single polymer chain under nanometric confinement
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We address the dynamical behavior of a single polymer chain under nanometric confinement. We consider a polymer melt made of a mixture of hydrogenated and deuterated high molecular mass Poly(Ethylene Oxide) (PEO). The confining material is a membrane of Anodic Aluminum Oxide (AAO), a macroscopically highly ordered confining system made of parallel cylindrical channels. We use Neutron Spin-Echo (NSE) under the Zero Average Contrast (ZAC) condition to, all at once, i) match the intense porous AAO detrimental elastic SANS (Small Angle Neutron Scattering) contribution to the total intermediate scattering function I(Q,t) and ii) measure the Q dependence of the dynamical modes of a single chain under confinement. The polymer dynamics is probed on an extremely broad spacial ([2.2 10−2 Å−1, 0.2 Å−1]) and temporal ([0.1 ns, 600 ns]) ranges. We do not detect any influence of confinement on the polymer dynamics. This result is discussed in the framework of the debate on the existence of a “corset effect” recently suggested by NMR relaxometry data.
KeywordsEuropean Physical Journal Special Topic Anodic Aluminum Oxide Small Angle Neutron Scattering Anodic Aluminum Oxide Membrane Polymer Dynamic
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