Structure of poly(dialkylsiloxane) melts: Comparisons of wide-angle X-ray scattering, molecular dynamics simulations, and integral equation theory

A Habenschuss and M Tsige and JG Curro and GS Grest and SK Nath, MACROMOLECULES, 40, 7036-7043 (2007).

DOI: 10.1021/ma0702290

Wide-angle X-ray scattering, molecular dynamics (MD) simulations, and integral equation theory are used to study the structure of poly(diethylsiloxane) (PDES), poly(ethylmethylsiloxane) (PEMS), and poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS) melts. The structure functions of PDES, PEMS, and PDMS are similar, but systematic trends in the intermolecular packing are observed. The local intramolecular structure is extracted from the experimental structure functions. The bond distances and bond angles obtained, including the large Si-O-Si angle, are in good agreement with the explicit atom (EA) and united atom (UA) potentials used in the simulations and theory and from other sources. Very good agreement is found between the MD simulations using the EA potentials and the experimental scattering results. Good agreement is also found between the polymer reference interaction site model (PRISM theory) and the UA MD simulations. The intermolecular structure is examined experimentally using an appropriately weighted radial distribution function and with theory and simulation using intermolecular site/site pair correlation functions. Experiment, simulation, and theory show systematic increases in the chain/chain packing distances in the siloxanes as the number of sites in the pendant side chains is increased.

Return to Publications page