Materials Science

Hot Templating

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Science  20 Jul 2012:
Vol. 337, Issue 6092, pp. 270
DOI: 10.1126/science.337.6092.270-d
CREDIT: SCHUSTER ET AL., J. AM. CHEM. SOC. 134, 10.1021/JA208941S (2012)

One method for creating ordered mesoporous materials is to use the phase separation of block copolymers to create a mold for patterning a second material. Typically, the structure of the template is fixed after solvent evaporation. Schuster et al. applied small-angle x-ray scattering (SAXS) to follow the pyrolytic formation of mesoporous carbon films using commercial triblock polymers as templates and oligomeric resol as a carbon precursor. They spin-coated these solutions onto silicon substrates or spread them onto the surface of porous anodic alumina membranes, then monitored the thermal evolution of their structures with grazing incidence or in situ SAXS, respectively. Analysis showed that the self-assembly of the mesoporous phase (cylindrical holes in a face-centered orthorhombic or circular hexagonal structure, respectively) does not occur after solvent evaporation but during pyrolysis, and that changes in the heating rate can lead to changes in the unit-cell parameters.

J. Am. Chem. Soc. 134, 10.1021/ja208941s (2012).

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