Date of Award

Spring 1-1-2018

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Material Science Engineering (MSMatSE)

Department

Materials Science and Engineering

First Advisor

Garret M. Miyake

Second Advisor

Christopher Bowman

Third Advisor

Yifu Ding

Abstract

Recently, wedge polymers with high molecular weight, size, and rigidity have been designed and synthesized. To date, the complexity of wedge polymers has been limited to the diblock copolymer architecture. This work presents a two-step, one-pot process to make star polymers with wedge polymer arms. After the wedge polymer arms are synthesized, crosslinker species are added to the reaction, rapidly forming star polymers. Crosslinker species with different conformational freedom were designed and synthesized and their performance was evaluated. Mass conversion up to 92% and stars with up to 17 arms were synthesized with the most rigid crosslinker. The effects of arm molecular weight and molar ratio of crosslinker to arm on mass conversion and arms per star were explored further. Finally, the size scaling between the wedge homopolymer and star architectures were compared, verifying theoretical results regarding star polymers with arms much larger than their core.

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