Block copolymer molecular weight determination via gel permeation chromatography: Choosing a combining rule

John M. Sebastian, Richard Alan Register

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

26 Scopus citations

Abstract

We present a method for accurately determining the true molecular weights of narrow-distribution block copolymers, using only a basic gel permeation chromatograph (GPC) equipped with a refractive index detector and calibrated with polystyrene standards. Our approach is based on the well-known observation that GPC calibration curves for different homopolymers in good solvents are essentially parallel, allowing the curves for different polymers to be described by simple hydrodynamic equivalence ratios rB versus polystyrene. We present values of rB, in both toluene and tetrahydrofuran, for various polydiene and hydrogenated polydiene homopolymers commonly incorporated into commercial styrenic block copolymers. These values of rB must be combined to yield the hydrodynamic equivalence ratio of the block copolymer, from which the block copolymer's true molecular weight can be determined. Three combining rules proposed in the literature are tested against a series of symmetric polystyrene-polybutadiene diblock copolymers of varying molecular weight. A simple linear combining rule accurately represents the results.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2056-2069
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Applied Polymer Science
Volume82
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 21 2001

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Materials Chemistry

Keywords

  • Block copolymer
  • Gel permeation chromatography
  • Molecular weight
  • Size exclusion chromatography

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