Aqueous solutions of triblock copolymers of poly(ethylene oxide) and poly(propylene oxide) aggregate at elevated temperatures into micelles which for polymer concentrations greater-than-or-equal-to 20% make a hard sphere crystallization to a cubic micellar crystal. Structural studies show that pressure improves the solvent quality of water, thus resulting in decomposition of the micelles and consequent melting of the micellar crystal. The combined pressure and temperature dependence reveals that in spite of the apparent increase of order on the 100 angstrom length scale upon increasing temperature (decreasing pressure) the overall entropy increases through the inverted micellar crystallization characteristic.
|Journal||Physical Review Letters|
|Publication status||Published - 1993|