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In Situ Probing the Relaxation Properties of Ultrathin Polystyrene Films by Using Electric Force Microscopy

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ABSTRACT

The rapid development of nanoscience and nanotechnology involves polymer films with thickness down to nanometer scale. However, the properties of ultrathin polymer films are extremely different from that of bulk matrix or thin films. It is challenging to distinguish the changes of physical properties in ultrathin films using conventional techniques especially when it locates near the glass transition temperature (Tg). In this work, we successfully evaluated a series of physical properties of ultrathin polystyrene (PS) films by in situ characterizing the discharging behavior of the patterned charges using electric force microscopy. By monitoring the surface potential in real time, we found that the Tg of ultrathin PS films is clearly independent of film thickness, which are greatly different from that of thin PS films (film thickness larger than 10 nm).

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Diagram of patterned charges characterized polymer chains’ mobility and film thickness dependence of the Tg in thin and ultrathin polymer films. a Initial topographic polymer film, b selectively charged polymer film, c charges release, d, e film thickness dependent on local relaxation dynamics of normal thin films, f and ultrathin films
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Fig6: Diagram of patterned charges characterized polymer chains’ mobility and film thickness dependence of the Tg in thin and ultrathin polymer films. a Initial topographic polymer film, b selectively charged polymer film, c charges release, d, e film thickness dependent on local relaxation dynamics of normal thin films, f and ultrathin films

Mentions: In order to clearly interpret the polymer chain mobility and the discharging behavior with film thickness decreasing, a schematic illustration is proposed as shown in Fig. 6. The discharging of patterned charges is closely related to the polymer chain’s mobility. The SPD tendencies are monitored in situ using EFM, as shown in Fig. 6a–c, and the relaxation dynamics and Tg could be estimated.Fig. 6


In Situ Probing the Relaxation Properties of Ultrathin Polystyrene Films by Using Electric Force Microscopy
Diagram of patterned charges characterized polymer chains’ mobility and film thickness dependence of the Tg in thin and ultrathin polymer films. a Initial topographic polymer film, b selectively charged polymer film, c charges release, d, e film thickness dependent on local relaxation dynamics of normal thin films, f and ultrathin films
© Copyright Policy - OpenAccess
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC5383798&req=5

Fig6: Diagram of patterned charges characterized polymer chains’ mobility and film thickness dependence of the Tg in thin and ultrathin polymer films. a Initial topographic polymer film, b selectively charged polymer film, c charges release, d, e film thickness dependent on local relaxation dynamics of normal thin films, f and ultrathin films
Mentions: In order to clearly interpret the polymer chain mobility and the discharging behavior with film thickness decreasing, a schematic illustration is proposed as shown in Fig. 6. The discharging of patterned charges is closely related to the polymer chain’s mobility. The SPD tendencies are monitored in situ using EFM, as shown in Fig. 6a–c, and the relaxation dynamics and Tg could be estimated.Fig. 6

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

ABSTRACT

The rapid development of nanoscience and nanotechnology involves polymer films with thickness down to nanometer scale. However, the properties of ultrathin polymer films are extremely different from that of bulk matrix or thin films. It is challenging to distinguish the changes of physical properties in ultrathin films using conventional techniques especially when it locates near the glass transition temperature (Tg). In this work, we successfully evaluated a series of physical properties of ultrathin polystyrene (PS) films by in situ characterizing the discharging behavior of the patterned charges using electric force microscopy. By monitoring the surface potential in real time, we found that the Tg of ultrathin PS films is clearly independent of film thickness, which are greatly different from that of thin PS films (film thickness larger than 10 nm).

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus