Poly(styrene-b-4-vinylpyridine) diblock copolymers PS404-b- P4VP76 and PS317-b-P4VP76 (the subscripts indicate the degree of polymerization) self-assemble into spherical "crew-cut" micelles with a PS core and P4VP corona when prepared in a mixture of chloroform and 2-propanol. When the micelles are formed in the presence of quantum dots (QDs), the nature of the structures formed depends upon the polymer and the type of QDs. In our previous report [Macromolecules, 2010, 43, 5066-5074], PS404-b-P4VP76 + CdSe QDs formed stable spherical hybrid micelles, but prolonged vigorous stirring of the solutions led to a rearrangement into wormlike networks and loss of photoluminescence (PL) from the QDs. Here we report that PS317-b-P4VP76 + CdSe/ZnS core-shell QDs behave differently. Partial loss of PL intensity occurred upon addition of 2-propanol to the chloroform solution of the components, and the rearrangement to a network structure occurred spontaneously. We describe two strategies for recovery of the PL intensity for the QDs within the network, photo-activation and chemical activation with elemental sulfur.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Materials Chemistry