Polymer Science Faculty Research


Solvent Evaporation from Thin Polymer Films Studied Using Molecular Dynamics Simulations

Document Type


Publication Date

Spring 2004


Solvent casting of polymer films from solutions is usually used for preparing thin polymer films on a solid substrate. However, due to the complex nature of the casting process it is difficult to observe directly the effect of the solvent evaporation process on the structure of the film. We have used large-scale molecular dynamics simulations to study the evaporation of solvent from thin polymer films. The density profile of the solvent and polymer has been calculated from the simulations as a function of time. As the solvent evaporates a sharp increase in polymer density at the film/vapor interface is observed. The magnitude of the polymer density gradient across this interface depepnds on solvent concentration and is found to affect the rate of solvent evaporation from the film.



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