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Functional Nanomaterials via Controlled Block Copolymer Assembly (FUNCA)
Start date: Apr 1, 2010, End date: Mar 31, 2016 PROJECT  FINISHED 

We outline an ambitious 5 year interdisplinary research programme that introduces a fundamentally new platform to the fabrication of nanoelectronic and liquid crystal devices, current areas of intense scientific and technological interest. The new approach involves the use of block copolymer micelles and block comicelles prepared by Crystallization-Driven Living Polymerization (CDLP) processes. This novel method allows unprecedented access to well-defined micelle architectures (with size control, narrow size distribution, and access to segmented structures that possess heterojunctions). Crosslinking will also be used to optimize micelle mechanical properties where necessary. The new platform offers very promising advantages over competitive methods for realising nanomaterials these include ambient temperature synthesis and solution processing, easy control of dimensions and aspect ratio, electronic properties, and semiconductor/semiconductor or semiconductor/dielectric junction fabrication. In addition, the use of hydrophilic coronas should, in principle, allow the self-assembly processes and subsequent manipulations to be performed in water.
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