Molecular brushes with extreme grafted side chain densities

Jae Min Bak, Gourishanker Jha, Eungjin Ahn, Seo Hyun Jung, Han Mo Jeong, Byeong Su Kim, Hyung Il Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


A series of densely grafted poly(n-butyl acrylate) (PBA) molecular brushes with four different grafting densities were synthesized by the "grafting-from" approach using atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP). A novel monomer, isopropylidene-2,2-Bis(methoxy)propionic hydroxyethylmethacrylate (IMPHMA), was synthesized and copolymerized with methyl methacrylate (MMA) under different monomer feed ratios to yield a series of linear poly(methyl methacrylate-stat-IMAPA), [PMMA-s-(PIMPHMA)]. The resulting copolymers were deprotected and transformed to macroinitiators, [PMMA-s-(PHEMA-IMPHMA-Br)]. n-Butyl acrylate (BA) was grafted from these macroinitiators to yield a series of molecular brushes, [PMMA-s-{(PIMPHMA)-g- PBA}], with various side chain lengths. Molecular brushes were characterized by gel permeation chromatography (GPC) and 1H NMR. PBA side chains were cleaved by acid hydrolysis, and the resulting linear PBA polymers were characterized by GPC to study initiation efficiency during the synthesis of molecular brushes. The initiation efficiency increased with polymerization time and decreased with macroinitiators that had more initiation sites. Atomic force microscopy (AFM) measurements demonstrated the characteristic molecular structure by resolving individual brush molecules.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3462-3468
Number of pages7
Issue number16
Publication statusPublished - 2012 Jul 19

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the WCU research program (R31-2008-000-20012-0), Priority Research Center Program (2009-0093818), and Basic Science Research Program (2010-0008642) through the National Research Foundation of Korea funded by the Ministry of Education, Science, and Technology of Korea.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Organic Chemistry
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Materials Chemistry


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