A facile route to bespoke macro- and mesoporous block copolymer microparticles

He, Guping, Bennett, Thomas M., Alauhdin, Mohammad, Fay, Michael W., Liu, Xin, Schwab, Simon T., Sun, Cheng-gong and Howdle, Steven M. (2018) A facile route to bespoke macro- and mesoporous block copolymer microparticles. Polymer Chemistry, 9 (27). p. 3808. ISSN 1759-9954

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We report a facile and versatile strategy for the bespoke fabrication of macro- and mesoporous block copolymer microparticles. A clean synthetic route, RAFT dispersion polymerisation in supercritical carbon dioxide (scCO2), is used to generate block copolymer microparticles. Selective swelling/deswelling is then applied to induce controlled morphology transitions and to trap the resulting porous state. The pore sizes are controllable over a large size range (~20 – 200 nm) by varying the length of the swellable block. Through a systematic approach we then demonstrate that the shape of the pores can also be tailored from isolated spheres through to interconnected/bicontinuous channels by varying the ratio of the two blocks. This process is shown to be applicable to a range of poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA)based block copolymer systems, including PMMA-b-poly(4-vinyl pyridine), PMMAb-poly(dimethyl acrylamide) (DMA) and PMMA-bpoly(dimethylaminoethylmethacrylate) (DMAEMA). In each case, the second minority block (e.g. P4VP, etc.) was selectively swollen with an alcohol to induce an order-toorder morphology transition and then quenched rapidly by the non-solvent hexane. This not only takes place on the order of hours, but is also freely scalable for the production of grams of material and beyond in a single step following polymerisation.

Item Type: Article
RIS ID: https://nottingham-repository.worktribe.com/output/938523
Schools/Departments: University of Nottingham, UK > Faculty of Science > School of Chemistry
Identification Number: https://doi.org/10.1039/c8py00707a
Depositing User: Smith, Ruth
Date Deposited: 12 Jul 2018 11:13
Last Modified: 04 May 2020 19:40
URI: https://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/id/eprint/52916

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