291553 Control of Electrochemical Activity with Thermally Responsive Polymers

Monday, October 29, 2012
Hall B (Convention Center )
Mathew J. Boyer, Department of Chemical Engineering, Lehigh University, Bethlehem, PA; Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering, Clemson University, Clemson, SC, Jesse C. Kelly, Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Clemson University, Clemson, SC and Mark E. Roberts, Chemical Engineering, Clemson University, Clemson, SC

Electrochemical systems are commonly used, such as biosensors and batteries.  A convenient attribute for these systems would be selective activity for the prevention of fouling in biosensors or overheating in batteries.  Thermally responsive polymers that are commonly researched for drug delivery systems and filtration systems may be applied as a reversible switch to control ion transport in response to a temperature change.  The following study looks at the use of poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) (PNIPAM) to pacify electrode surfaces at one temperature while rendering them electrochemically unimpeded at another.  Three separate electrode surfaces were functionalized with self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) to form an amine or epoxy terminated layer.  An amide layer was formed on gold using aminoethanethiol hydrochloride, on indium tin oxide using aminopropyltriethoxysilane, and on polyaniline with poly(glycidyl methacrylate).  Carboxyl terminated PNIPAM was then grafted to form a responsive surface and a copolymer of PNIPAM and acrylic acid was used to form another.  Electrochemical measurements were performed using cyclic voltammetry in order to show the degree of ion transfer at low and high temperatures.  Varying characteristics of the surface impedes ion transfer to different degrees at either low or high temperatures.

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