Thermal behavior and high- and low-temperature phase structures of gemini fluorocarbon/hydrocarbon diblocks

Caroline De Gracia Lux, Bertrand Donnio, Benoit Heinrich, Marie Pierre Krafft

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


The thermal behavior and phase structure of two series of gemini fluorocarbon/hydrocarbon diblock amphiphiles with the general formula (C nF2n+1CH2)(Cm - 2H 2m - 3)CH-CH(CnF2n+1CH2)(C m - 2H2m - 3), with n = 8, 10 and m = 6, 12, 14, 16, 18, 20 (abbreviated as di(FnHm)), have been investigated by differential scanning calorimetry, polarized optical and freeze-fracture transmission electron microscopies, dilatometry, and small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS). The various terms of the series exhibit the same thermal behavior, essentially composed of two exothermal transitions, a low-temperature event that corresponds to the melting of the hydrocarbon chains at TH and a high-temperature transition associated with the melting of the fluorocarbon chains at T F. Below TH, a disordered plastic rotator phase, M LT, and above TH, a lamellar phase, MHT, were determined by SAXS experiments. Above TF, the compounds eventually clear into the isotropic liquid. In the MHT phase, both the Fn and Hm blocks are segregated from each other, forming sublayers with sharp interfaces, as revealed by the five lamellar orders and remarkable sharpness of the SAXS peaks. In the MLT phase, the partial crystallization of the aliphatic blocks when the temperature is lowered leads to the disruption of the aliphatic sublayers into rows of ribbons arranged according to pseudohexagonal and/or rectangular arrangements with different lattice sizes (p2gg symmetry). The Fn segments form the fluorinated continuum. In support of SAXS, molecular packing models of the tetrablocks are proposed on the basis of the temperature/volume variations of di(F10H20) and di(F10H16) in both high- and low-temperature phases, as determined by dilatometry. It is notable that the arrangements found for di(FnHm) are completely different from those previously reported for FnHm diblocks, revealing the influence of the linker unit on the solid-state behavior of the tetrablocks.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5325-5336
Number of pages12
Issue number17
StatePublished - Apr 30 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Spectroscopy
  • Electrochemistry


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