Phase stability of colloidal spheres mixed with supramolecular rod-like polymers

Vincent F.D. Peters, Mark Vis (Corresponding author), Remco Tuinier (Corresponding author)

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Abstract

Mixtures of colloids and supramolecular polymers exhibit stimuli-responsive phase behavior. In previous work (Peters and Tuinier, Physica A510, 233 [2018]) the polymers were treated as fully flexible chains, while in experimental systems supramolecular polymers may have a certain degree of stiffness. Here we predict that for stiff rod-like supramolecular polymers phase separation can occur at much lower polymer concentrations than for flexible supramolecular polymers. Additionally, it is demonstrated that colloid–polymer interactions can significantly influence the equilibrium polymer size distribution, however this does not strongly affect the phase behavior of the mixture. At the low polymer concentrations at which the system already gets unstable, the effect of excluded volume interactions between polymers chains themselves is small. Finally, for an experimental system it is predicted that a variety of re-entrant phase transitions may be observed within a realistic temperature range as illustrated by a specific example.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1175–1187
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Polymer Science
Volume59
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jun 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 The Authors. Journal of Polymer Science published by Wiley Periodicals LLC.

Copyright:
Copyright 2021 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.

Keywords

  • colloids
  • phase behavior
  • phase transitions
  • supramolecular polymers
  • thermodynamics

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