Nano-Anemones: Stimulus-Responsive Copolymer-Micelle Surfaces


  • EPSRC is thanked for joint research grants to SPA and SB (GR/60402 and GR/S60419, respectively). GBW thanks the Royal Academy of Engineering for a one-year fellowship. Dr. M. Osborne of Sussex University, UK, is thanked for his advice on the surface fluorescence measurements. Some of this work (copolymer syntheses and fluorescence spectroscopy studies) was carried out at Sussex University.


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Robust, stimulus-responsive thin films are prepared by self-assembly of diblock-copolymer micelles from aqueous solution. Atomic force microscopy and fluorescence spectroscopy show that the hydrophobic polymer cores of block copolymer micelles adsorbed at high pH become localized cationic polymer brushes reversibly at low pH without micellar desorption (see Figure).