Volume 88, Number 4, November 2009
|Number of page(s)||6|
|Section||Interdisciplinary Physics and Related Areas of Science and Technology|
|Published online||12 November 2009|
Configurations of polymers attached to probes
Raymond and Beverly Sackler School of Physics and Astronomy, Tel Aviv University - Tel Aviv 69978, Israel
2 Department of Physics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology - Cambridge, MA 02139, USA
Accepted: 29 October 2009
We study polymers attached to spherical (circular) or paraboloidal (parabolic) probes in three (two) dimensions. Both self-avoiding and random walks are examined numerically. The behavior of a polymer of size R0 attached to the tip of a probe with radius of curvature R, differs qualitatively for large and small values of the ratio s = R0/R. We demonstrate that the scaled compliance (inverse force constant) S/, and scaled mean position of the polymer end-point /R can be expressed as a function of s. Scaled compliance is anisotropic, and quite large in the direction parallel to the surface when R0 ~ R. The exponent γ, characterizing the number of polymer configurations, crosses over from a value of – characteristic of a planar boundary – at small s to one reflecting the overall shape of the probe at large s. For a spherical probe the crossover is to an unencumbered polymer, while for a parabolic probe we cannot rule out a new exponent.
PACS: 82.35.Lr – Physical properties of polymers / 64.60.F- – Equilibrium properties near critical points, critical exponents / 36.20.Ey – Conformation (statistics and dynamics)
© EPLA, 2009
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