Small-angle neutron scattering of mixed ionic perfluoropolyether micellar solutions

Research Area: Uncategorized Year: 2007
Type of Publication: Article
Number: 6 Pages: 1348-1353
Month: February
ISSN: 1520-6106
Aqueous mixed micellar solutions of perfluoropolyether carboxylic salts with ammonium counterions have been studied by small-angle neutron scattering. Two surfactants differing in the tail length were mixed in proportions n2/n3 = 60/40 w/w, where n2 and n3 are the surfactants with two and three perfluoroisopropoxy units in the tail, respectively. The tails are chlorine-terminated. The mixed micellar solutions, in the concentration range 0.1-0.2 M and thermal interval 20-40 degrees C, show structural characteristics of the interfacial shell that are very similar to ammonium n2 micellar solutions previously investigated; thus, the physics of the interfacial region is dominated by the polar head and counterion. The shape and dimensions of the micelles are influenced by the presence of the n3 surfactant, whose chain length in the micelle is 2 A longer than that of the n2 surfactant. The n3 surfactant favors the ellipsoidal shape in the concentration range 0.1-0.2 M with a⅟2 ionization degree of n2 micelles. The very low surface charge of the mixed micelles is attributed to the increase in hydrophobic interactions between the surfactant tails, due to the longer n3 surfactant molecules in micelles. The closer packing of the tails decreases the micellar curvature and the repulsions between the polar heads, by surface charge neutralization of counterions migrating from the Gouy-Chapman diffuse layer, leading to micellar growth in ellipsoids with greater axial ratios.
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