Volume 79, Number 6, September 2007
|Number of page(s)||6|
|Section||Condensed Matter: Structural, Mechanical and Thermal Properties|
|Published online||05 September 2007|
Correlation effects in dynamics of living polymers
Institut Charles Sadron - 6 rue Boussingault, 67083 Strasbourg Cedex, France
Accepted: 29 July 2007
Theoretically studying the dynamics of entangled living polymers which can reversibly break and recombine, we find a number of diffusion-controlled regimes of essentially non-exponential stress relaxation. This behavior is in contrast to predictions of the classical theory of Cates and its more recent generalizations. The non-exponential relaxation is due to strong correlations between chain scissions and recombinations: multiple self-recombinations are much more frequent than recombinations with other chains and are resulting in fast release of topological constraints (entanglement tube coarsening). The strong renormalization effect of correlations on the lifetime of a living chain (the time period until the chain breaks and one of its fragments recombines with another chain) is also elucidated. We show that the correlation effects defining the dynamics are controlled by the activation energy for chain recombination and by the chain rigidity.
PACS: 61.25.Hq – Macromolecular and polymer solutions; polymer melts; swelling / 83.80.Qr – Surfactant and micellar systems, associated polymers
© Europhysics Letters Association, 2007
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