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Surface-controlled spatially heterogeneous physical properties of a supramolecular gel with homogeneous chemical composition

DOI: 10.1039/D1SC04671C DOI Help

Authors: Bin Yang (University of Bath) , Marina Lledos (University of Nottingham) , Riaz Akhtar (University of Liverpool) , Giuseppe Ciccone (University of Glasgow) , Long Jiang (University of Nottingham) , Emanuele Russo (University of Nottingham) , Sunil Rajput (University of Nottingham) , Chunyu Jin (University of Cambridge) , Maria Angelerou (University of Nottingham) , Thomeas Arnold (Diamond Light Source; European Spallation Source ERIC; STFC; University of Bath) , Jonathan Rawle (Diamond Light Source) , Massimo Vassalli (University of Glasgow) , Maria Marlow (University of Nottingham) , Dave J. Adams (Diamond Light Source) , Mischa Zelzer (University of Nottingham)
Co-authored by industrial partner: No

Type: Journal Paper
Journal: Chemical Science

State: Published (Approved)
Published: October 2021
Diamond Proposal Number(s): 16246

Open Access Open Access

Abstract: Controlling supramolecular self-assembly across multiple length scales to prepare gels with localised properties is challenging. Most strategies concentrate on fabricating gels with heterogeneous components, where localised properties are generated by the stimuli-responsive component. Here, as an alternative approach, we use a spiropyran-modified surface that can be patterned with light. We show that light-induced differences in surface chemistry can direct the bulk assembly of a low molecular weight gelator, 2-NapAV, meaning that mechanical gel properties can be controlled by the surface on which the gel is grown. Using grazing incidence X-ray diffraction and grazing incidence small angle X-ray scattering, we demonstrate that the origin of the different gel properties relates to differences in the architectures of the gels. This provides a new method to prepare a single domain (i.e., chemically homogeneous) hydrogel with locally controlled (i.e., mechanically heterogeneous) properties.

Subject Areas: Chemistry, Physics

Instruments: I07-Surface & interface diffraction

Added On: 14/10/2021 10:19


Discipline Tags:

Molecular Physics Physics Soft condensed matter physics Surfaces Chemistry

Technical Tags:

Diffraction Scattering Grazing Incidence X-ray Diffraction (GIXD) Small Angle X-ray Scattering (SAXS) Grazing Incidence Small Angle Scattering (GISAXS)