Interfacial Structure and Melting Temperature of Alkane and Alcohol Molecules in Contact with Polystyrene Films
Infrared-visible sum-frequency-generation spectroscopy (SFG) is used to investigate the interfacial structure of hexadecanol (C16H33OH) and heneicosane (C21H44) in contact with polystyrene films (PS) spin coated on a sapphire substrate. The interfacial structure of hexadecanol is very different from heneicosane in contact with PS. In the crystalline state, the hexadecanol molecules are oriented with the C-C-C axis parallel to the surface plane in contact with PS. For the crystalline heneicosane/PS interface, the SFG spectra are very similar to those observed for molecules oriented with the symmetry axis of the methyl groups parallel to the surface normal. The structure of both hexadecanol (or heneicosane) and the phenyl groups changes sharply at the melting temperature of hexadecanol (or heneicosane). Upon heating the hexadecanol/PS sample above the glass transition temperature (T(g)) of PS, the hexadecanol molecules penetrate through the PS film and adsorb on the sapphire substrate. The adsorbed hexadecanol molecules are oriented with the symmetry axis of the methyl groups parallel to the surface normal. The structure of the PS molecules at the sapphire interface is different because the PS phenyl groups are now in contact with the hydrophobic tails of the hexadecanol molecules, rather than the hydrophilic sapphire substrate. The adsorbed hexadecanol molecules do not disorder at the bulk melting temperature of hexadecanol. In comparison, no adsorption of heneicosane molecules next to sapphire interface upon annealing was observed. The differences between the adsorption of hexadecanol and heneicosane can be explained by the preferential interactions between the hydroxyl groups of the alcohol and hydrophilic sapphire substrate.
The Journal of Physical Chemistry B
Li, Guifeng; Dhinojwala, Ali; and Yeganeh, Mohsen S., "Interfacial Structure and Melting Temperature of Alkane and Alcohol Molecules in Contact with Polystyrene Films" (2009). Polymer Science Faculty Research. 40.