We have recently investigated the influence of anion identity on the physical properties of two different thermoresponsive polymer brushes via neutron reflectometry, atomic force spectroscopy and ellipsometry. Polymer brushes of (a) poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) (PNIPAM) and (b) poly(2-2(methoxyethoxy)ethyl methacrylate) (PMEO2MA) were exposed to potassium salts of acetate and thiocyanate. The temperature response of both polymer brushes was shifted to lower temperatures in the presence of the kosmotropic acetate anions and higher temperatures when exposed to chaotropic thiocyanate anions. The response of the PMEO2MA brush was considerably broader as a function of temperature and the shift in temperature in response to the added salt was greater compared to that displayed by the PNIPAM brush.

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Last edited: Friday September 10, 2010

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