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Mapping Chemically Heterogeneous Polymer System Using Chemical Modification and Atomic Force Microscopy.


pdf icon Mapping Chemically Heterogeneous Polymer System Using Chemical Modification and Atomic Force Microscopy. (619 K)
Raghavan, D.; Gu, X.; VanLandingham, M. R.; Nguyen, T.

ACS Polymer Preprints, Vol. 41, No. 2, 1423-1424, 2000.

Keywords:

mapping; microscopy; coatings; degradation; heterogeneity; nanoindentation; phase imaging; polymers

Abstract:

The objective of this study was to demonstrate an approach to map a chemically heterogeneous system using chemical modification and Tapping Mode Atomic Force Microscopy (TMAFM). This approach is based on selective degradation of one of the phases in a two-phase polymer blend system and the ability of TMAFM to provide nanoscale lateral information about the different phases in heterogeneous polymer system. A 70:30 PEA/PS blend was exposed to a hydrolysis environment and analyzed using TMAFM. Based on the TMAFM results, which show similar degradation patterns between the pure PEA film and the matrix of the PEA/PS blend, the domains in the blend were identified as the PS-rich regions and the matrix as the PEA-rich region. These results are substantiated by AFM force curve measurements and FTIR-ATR analysis of the hydrolyzed PEA and PEA/PS samples. The usefulness of this approach in understanding the degradation process of a coating film will be discussed.