Ion-Beam and Surface-Analytical Studies of Macromolecular Surfaces
Joseph Gardella Principal Investigator
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The study of the surfaces and interfaces of polymeric materials is extremely important in determining structure-property relationships relevent to technological applications in adhesion, coatings, biocompatibility, degradation, and reactivity. In this proposal, surface-sensitive measurements of organic and polymeric surfaces are described, based on sputtering induced by and scattering of a primary low-energy noble-gas ion beam. Specifically, Langmuir-Blodgett (LB) thin-film preparation techniques will be used to control structure, orientation, and degree of polymerization of films. These will be utilized to study the ion-formation processes which give rise to information about the chain length and bonding of a polymeric chain. Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometry (SIMS) methods will be developed using the LB film as a model system for the polymer surface, also SIMS will probe the interfacial chemistry of the films themselves. Low-energy Ion Scattering (ISS) analysis of the orientation of ordered polymer surfaces will be studied by combining results from molecular mechanics calculations of average orientation and compared to experimental results under low-damage conditions. Studies of the surface composition of block copolymers, compatible blends, and surface-modified polymers will be accomplished by combining electron microscopy, contact angle analysis, Electron Spectroscopy for Chemical Analysis (angular dependent methods), ISS and Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy to get a complete description of the surface and dynamics of the polymer interface.