Enhancement of Surface Wettability by Incorporating Polar Initiator Fragments at Chain Ends of Low-Molecular-Weight Polymers

Lanhe Zhang, John M. Torkelson*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Scopus citations

Abstract

Simple methods for enhancing hydrophilicity of hydrocarbon polymers are of broad scientific and technological interest. Polystyrene was synthesized via free radical polymerization with initiator fragments incorporated at chain ends. Compared with high molecular weight polystyrene or chains with nonpolar ends, the dynamic receding water contact angle is reduced by as much as ∼30° in ∼4 kg/mol polystyrene with −COOH and nitrile chain ends. This remarkable enhancement results in surface hydrophilicity that is higher than that of poly(methyl methacrylate). This effective methodology incorporating polar moieties at chain ends of nonpolar polymers can be adapted to existing formulations for enhanced surface properties.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)12176-12181
Number of pages6
JournalACS Applied Materials and Interfaces
Volume9
Issue number14
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 12 2017

Keywords

  • chain end
  • free radical polymerization
  • hydrogen bonding
  • hydrophilicity
  • low-molecular-weight polymers
  • polystyrene
  • receding contact angle
  • surface wettability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)

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