Orientational anisotropy in simulated vapor-deposited molecular glasses

I Lyubimov and L Antony and DM Walters and D Rodney and MD Ediger and JJ de Pablo, JOURNAL OF CHEMICAL PHYSICS, 143, 094502 (2015).

DOI: 10.1063/1.4928523

Enhanced kinetic stability of vapor-deposited glasses has been established for a variety of glass organic formers. Several recent reports indicate that vapor-deposited glasses can be orientationally anisotropic. In this work, we present results of extensive molecular simulations that mimic a number of features of the experimental vapor deposition process. The simulations are performed on a generic coarse- grained model and an all-atom representation of N,Ni- bis(3-methylpheny1)-N,Nidiphenylbenzidine (TPD), a small organic molecule whose vapor-deposited glasses exhibit considerable orientational anisotropy. The coarse-grained model adopted here is found to reproduce several key aspects reported in experiments. In particular, the molecular orientation of vapor-deposited glasses is observed to depend on substrate temperature during deposition. For a fixed deposition rate, the molecular orientation in the glasses changes from isotropic, at the glass transition temperature, Tg, to slightly normal to the substrate at temperatures just below Tg. Well below Tg, molecular orientation becomes predominantly parallel to the substrate. The all- atom model is used to confirm some of the equilibrium structural features of TPD interfaces that arise above the glass transition temperature. We discuss a mechanism based on distinct orientations observed at equilibrium near the surface of the film, which get trapped within the film during the non-equilibrium process of vapor deposition. (C) 2015 AIP Publishing LLC.

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