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About different packing states of alkyl groups in comb-like polymers with rigid backbones

: Babur, T.; Gupta, G.; Beiner, M.


Soft matter 12 (2016), No.39, pp.8093-8097
ISSN: 1744-683X
ISSN: 1744-6848
Journal Article
Fraunhofer IMWS ()

We report a comparative X-ray diffraction study on three series of comb-like polymers with rigid backbones and layered morphologies [regio-regular poly(3-alkyl thiophenes), alkoxylated polyesters, alkoxylated polyphenylenevinylenes] highlighting the importance of the volume per methylene unit VCH2 in alkyl nanodomains for the overall packing state. We demonstrate that there is a large (â30%) variation in the VCH2 values for different polymer series and packing states but no significant change in VCH2 depending on the length of the alkyl side groups. This calls into question commonly used structural models which are based only on tilting and interdigitation of ideally stretched alkyl side groups. We argue that a linear dependence of the layer spacings with side chain length can also be explained by a constant VCH2 value and unchanged main chain packing.