Polyelectrolyte gels: Ionic partners split up

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A new class of polyelectrolyte gels were designed that swell in low-polarity organic solvents to sizes more than hundred times their volume and enable a wider range of solvents to be efficiently absorbed. Polymer chains and counterions having four large covalently attached hydrocarbon and fluorocarbon groups prevent the ions from getting close enough to form strong ion pairs with each other in less-polar solvents. Neutral polyelectrolytes swell in chloroform suggesting that the counterions do not dissociate in the solvents and polymer chains play an important role in the gels absorption properties. The results show that chloroform is the best solvent for the polymer chains, indicating that the neutral polymers have dielectric constant 4.8. The results also show that ethyl acetate solvent do not swell in neutral and polyelectrolyte gel, which shows that it has unfavorable interaction with polymer chain used to make these gels.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)401-402
Number of pages2
JournalNature Materials
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jan 1 2007

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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