Aggregation Behavior of Polyisoprene−Pluronic Graft Copolymers in Selective Solvents

Shirin Alexander, Terence Cosgrove, Wiebe Matthijs de Vos, Thomas C. Castle, Stuart W. Prescott

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


Novel amphiphilic graft copolymers composed of a polyisoprene (PIP) backbone with Pluronic side chains, polyisoprene-g-Pluronic, have been synthesized using a “graft onto” technique. Small-angle neutron scattering (SANS) has been used to characterize the conformation of the P123 and P103 Pluronic graft copolymers in selective solvents such as ethanol and hexane and in a nonselective solvent, tetrahydrofuran (THF). The results indicated that, in a selective solvent for the side chain Pluronics (e.g., ethanol), “crew-cut” micelles were formed with a large core of radius ∼ 120 Å; data were fitted with a core–shell model. In a good solvent for the backbone (e.g., hexane), “flowerlike” micelles were formed with a small inner radius of ∼64 Å. In the nonselective solvent, a swollen polymer coil was found, which was described using the Guinier–Debye model. As THF/ethanol and THF/hexane can be prepared in any ratio, it was possible to vary the solvent composition gradually in order to study the transition from swollen coil to micelle. When going from 100% THF to 100% ethanol, the transition to micellar behavior was observed at a ratio of 20:80 (v/v %) THF/ethanol for both grafted copolymers and 40:60 (v/v %) THF/hexane for grafted P123 copolymers
Original languageUndefined
Pages (from-to)5747-5754
Issue number20
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • METIS-307370
  • IR-95021

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