Hairy nanoparticles by atom transfer radical polymerization in miniemulsion

2022 
Abstract Polymer nanoparticles with various architectures and functionalities are promising materials in numerous fields. Miniemulsion polymerization is one of the suitable pathways to prepare polymer nanoparticles since each droplet could act as a “nanoreactor”. A “smart” atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) catalytic system comprising Cu-TPMA/DS− (TPMA = tris(2-pyridylmethyl)amine, DS−= dodecyl sulfate anion) ion pair catalyst was efficiently applied in miniemulsion ATRP at low catalyst concentrations. Herein, hairy nanoparticles consisting of hydrophobic poly(n-butyl methacrylate) (P(BMA/EGDMA), EGDMA = ethylene glycol dimethacrylate) network “core” and hydrophilic oligo(ethylene oxide) methyl ether methacrylate (OEOMA) chains as “hair” were prepared by miniemulsion ATRP and a successive chain extension by aqueous ATRP from the particle surface. The addition of an inimer, 2-(α-bromoisobutyryloxy)ethyl methacrylate (HEMA-iBBr) to the P(BMA/EGDMA) network introduced more ATRP initiation sites for ATRP of OEOMA, enabling adjustment of the particle size from >400 nm to
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