Adsorption behaviour of sulfur containing polymers to gold surfaces using QCM-D

Stacy Slavin, Alexander H Soeriyadi, Lenny Voorhaar, Michael Raymond Whittaker, C Remzi Becer, Cyrille Boyer, Thomas Paul Davis, David Mark Haddleton

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48 Citations (Scopus)


We investigate the influences that functional group, polymer molecular weight and polymer molecular architecture have on the adsorption behaviour of some sulfur containing oligo(ethylene glycol) polymers to gold. QCM-D and XPS was used in this investigation revealing that disulfide functional groups bind with more mass deposited than dithio, trithio or thiols. This was observed with small di(ethylene glycol) polymers and with higher mass polymers. The effect of the sulfo-groups was not as apparent with higher mass polymers. Longer PEG pendent chains resulted in lower binding overall on the gold surface in comparison to shorter DEG chains caused by shielding of sulfur by the longer pendent chains. Thiols undergo two steps during the adsorption process while all other sulfur species adsorb in one step. XPS revealed the dissociation of disulfide bonds when binding to gold. These findings are important when forming stable polymer films on gold efficiently, with uses in applications from bio-fouling to polymer-lipid bilayers.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)118 - 128
Number of pages11
JournalSoft Matter
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2012
Externally publishedYes

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