Dimitrios Moschovas, Gkreti-Maria Manesi, Andreas Karydis-Messinis, George Zapsas, Konstantinos Ntetsikas, Nikolaos E. Zafeiropoulos, Alexey A. Piryazev, Edwin L. Thomas, Nikos Hadjichristidis, Dimitri A. Ivanov, Apostolos Avgeropoulos
Miktoarm star terpolymer, Anionic polymerization, Chlorosilane chemistry, Characterization in solution, Structural characterization, DSC, TEM, SAXS, Tricontinuous network
The synthesis, molecular and morphological characterization of a 3-miktoarm star terpolymer of polystyrene (PS, M¯¯¯¯n = 61.0 kg/mol), polybutadiene (PB, M¯¯¯¯n = 38.2 kg/mol) and polyisoprene (PI, M¯¯¯¯n = 29.2 kg/mol), corresponding to volume fractions (φ) of 0.46, 0.31 and 0.23 respectively, was studied. The major difference of the present material from previous ABC miktoarm stars (which is a star architecture bearing three different segments, all connected to a single junction point) with the same block components is the high 3,4-microstructure (55%) of the PI chains. The interaction parameter and the degree of polymerization of the two polydienes is sufficiently positive to create a three-phase microdomain structure as evidenced by differential scanning calorimetry and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). These results in combination with small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) and birefringence experiments suggest a cubic tricontinuous network structure, based on the I4132 space group never reported previously for such an architecture.