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Keywords:

  • atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP);
  • gradient;
  • nanocomposites;
  • polymer brushes;
  • surface-initiated polymerization

Abstract

Thumbnail image of graphical abstract

Summary: We report on preparing poly(2-(dimethylamino)ethyl methacrylate) (PDMAEMA) gradient substrate, wherein molecular weight (MW) and grafting density (σ) of the surface-anchored PDMAEMA chains vary continuously in two orthogonal directions. Such a specimen is used to control the assembly of charged gold nanoparticles. Increasing MW and σ of the grafted PDMAEMA cause an enhanced binding of the nanoparticles to PDMAEMA, thus leading to an orthogonal number density gradient of surface-bound gold nanoparticles.