Polymer Science Faculty Research

Title

Surface Dynamics in Rubbed Polymer Thin Films Probed with Optical Birefringence Measurements

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

6-7-2000

Abstract

Measurements of the optical birefringence were used to probe the relaxation of rubbed ultrathin polystyrene (PS) films on glass substrates. It was found that the glass transition temperature, Tg, of the films dropped by 15−20 K as the film thickness decreased from 10 μm to 5.8 nm. Experiments on thick films (10 μm) revealed that molecules closer to the polymer−air interface relax more quickly than molecules farther from the interface. These results are explained in the context of past experimental studies of thermal properties of similar ultrathin polymer films.

Publication Title

Macromolecules

Volume

33

Issue

13

First Page

4903

Last Page

4909