Kinetics of layer hopping in a diblock copolymer lamellar phase
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In the ordered state, symmetric diblock copolymers self-assemble into an anisotropic lamellar morphology. The equilibrium thickness of the lamellae is the result of a delicate balance between enthalpic and entropic energies, which can be tuned by controlling the temperature. Here we devise a simple yet powerful method of detecting tiny changes in the lamellar thickness using optical microscopy. From such measurements we characterize the enthalpic interaction as well as the kinetics of molecules as they hop from one layer to the next in order to adjust the lamellar thickness in response to a temperature jump. The resolution of the measurements facilitate a direct comparison to predictions from self-consistent field theory.
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