Electrospinning atactic polystyrene: A neutron scattering study
Mohan, S. D., Sen, S., Mitchell, G. R., Olley, R. H. and Davis, F. J. (2009) Electrospinning atactic polystyrene: A neutron scattering study. Journal of Physics: Conference Series, 183. 012019. ISSN 1742-6588
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To link to this article DOI: 10.1088/1742-6596/183/1/012019
Electrospinning is a method used to produce nanoscale to microscale sized polymer fibres. In this study we electrospin 1:1 blends of deuterated and hydrogenated atactic-Polystyrene from N,N-Dimethylformamide for small angle neutron scattering experiments in order to analyse the chain conformation in the electrospun fibres. Small angle neutron scattering was carried out on randomly orientated fibre mats obtained using applied voltages of 10kV-15kV and needle tip to collector distances of 20cm and 30cm. Fibre diameters varied from 3mm - 20mm. Neutron scattering data from fibre samples were compared with bulk samples of the same polymer blend. The scattering data indicates that there are pores and nanovoiding present in the fibres; this was confirmed by scanning electron microscopy. A model that combines the scattering from the pores and the labelled polymer chains was used to extract values for the radius of gyration. The radius of gyration in the fibres is found to vary little with the applied voltage, but varies with the initial solution concentration and fibre diameter. The values for the radius of gyration in the fibres are broadly equivalent to that of the bulk state.