Volume 85, Number 5, March 2009
|Number of page(s)||6|
|Section||Interdisciplinary Physics and Related Areas of Science and Technology|
|Published online||16 March 2009|
Phase behaviour and structure of stable complexes of oppositely charged polyelectrolytes
Laboratoire de Physique des Solides, UMR CNRS 8502, Bât. 510 Université Paris-sud - 91405 Orsay, France, EU
2 Institut de Chimie des Matériaux Paris Est UMR CNRS 7182, Equipe Matériaux Polymères aux Interfaces, Université d'Évry - 91025 Évry, France, EU
Corresponding author: email@example.com
Accepted: 5 February 2009
We study the formation and structure of stable electrostatic complexes between oppositely charged polyelectrolytes, a long polymethacrylic acid and a shorter polyethylenimine, at low pH, where the polyacid is weakly charged. We explore the phase diagram as a function of the charge and concentration ratio of the constituents. In agreement with theory, turbidity and potential measurements show two distinct regimes of weak and strong complexation, which appear successively as the pH is increased and are separated by a well-defined limit. Weak complexes observed by neutron scattering and contrast matching have an open, non-compact structure, while strong complexes are condensed.
PACS: 82.35.Rs – Polyelectrolytes / 61.25.he – Polymers solutions / 61.05.fg – Neutron scattering (including small-angle scattering)
© EPLA, 2009
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