Alexander Shovsky, Doktorand
My research is devoted to polyelectrolyte complexes formed by functionalized polyelectrolytes. As one of the components I use cationic bottle-brush polyelectrolytes with grafted PEO side-chains. When mixed with an anionic polyelectrolyte, complexation occurs. The complexes can be uncharged, positively or negatively charged depending on the initial concentration of the two polyelectrolytes. The presence of grafted PEO side-chains on one of the polyelectrolytes infers steric stabilization due to the presence of a PEO rich corona, and thus the complexes remain stable also when uncharged. In the next step also hydrophobic side-chains will be introduced in the polyelectrolyte architecture, presumably leading to nano phase separation in the core of the complex. The interfacial properties of the formed complexes will also be investigated.