Effect of Molecular Weight On the Morphology of a Polymer Semiconductor-Thermoplastic Elastomer Blend
Polymer Science and Engineering
Polymer semiconductors (PSCs) are essential active materials in mechanically stretchable electronic devices. However, many exhibit low fracture strain due to their rigid chain conformation and the presence of large crystalline domains. Here, a PSC/elastomer blend, poly[((2,6-bis(thiophen-2-yl)-3,7-bis(9-octylnonadecyl)thieno[3,2-b]thieno[2′,3′:4,5]thieno[2,3-d]thiophene)-5,5′-diyl)(2,5-bis(8-octyloctadecyl)-3,6-di(thiophen-2-yl)pyrrolo[3,4-c]pyrrole-1,4-dione)-5,5′-diyl]] (P2TDPP2TFT4) and polystyrene-block-poly(ethylene-ran-butylene)-block-polystyrene (SEBS) are systematically investigated. Specifically, the effects of molecular weight of both SEBS and P2TDPP2TFT4 on the resulting blend morphology, mechanical, and electrical properties are explored. In addition to commonly used techniques, atomic force microscopy-based nanomechanical images are used to provide additional insights into the blend film morphology. Opposing trends in SEBS-induced aggregation are observed for the different P2TDPP2TFT4 molecular weights upon increasing the SEBS molecular weight from 87 to 276 kDa. Furthermore, these trends are seen in device performance trends for both molecular weights of P2TDPP2TFT4. SEBS molecular weight also has a substantial influence on the mesoscale phase separation. Strain at fracture increases dramatically upon blending, reaching a maximum value of 640% ± 20% in the blended films measured with film-on-water method. These results highlight the importance of molecular weight for electronic devices. In addition, this study provides valuable insights into appropriate polymer selections for stretchable semiconducting thin films that simultaneously possess excellent mechanical and electrical properties.
Advanced Electronic Materials
Root, S. E.,
Tok, J. B.,
(2023). Effect of Molecular Weight On the Morphology of a Polymer Semiconductor-Thermoplastic Elastomer Blend. Advanced Electronic Materials.
Available at: https://aquila.usm.edu/fac_pubs/20751