Conformational transitions of weak polyacids grafted to nanoparticles

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The charge distribution on polyelectrolytes is a key factor, which controls their conformation and interactions. In weak polyelectrolytes, this distribution is determined by a number of factors, including the solvent conditions and local environment. In this work, we investigate charge distributions of chains end-grafted on a spherical nanoparticle in a salt solution, using grand canonical titration Monte Carlo simulations of a coarse-grained polymer model. In this approach, the ionization state of each polymer bead fluctuates based on the dissociation constant, pH of the solution, and interactions with other particles in the system. We determine charge and polymer conformations as functions of the pH and solvent quality. We compare the results to a fixed charge model and also investigate the role of grafting density and the effect of curvature on the film morphologies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number144704
JournalJournal of Chemical Physics
Issue number14
StatePublished - Oct 14 2012

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Physics and Astronomy
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry


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