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Self-localization of polyacrylic acid molecules on polar ZnO(0001)-Zn surfaces.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  21691646     Owner:  NLM     Status:  Publisher    
The adsorption of single polyacrylic acid (PAAc) molecules was investigated on stepped hydroxide-stabilized polar ZnO(0001)-Zn surfaces using atomic force microscope (AFM) topography and force distance spectroscopy. Stepped surfaces of ZnO(0001)-Zn were prepared by a wet chemical etching procedure and PAAc molecules were adsorbed from aqueous NaClO(4) solutions. AFM single molecule topography studies could be utilized to show that polyacrylic acid molecules specifically adsorb on the non-polar (10-10) step edge faces at low ionic strengths. The radius of gyration of the dissolved PAAc in aqueous solution was measured by means of static light scattering experiments yielding a radius of gyration of R(g) = 136 nm at pH 7.4 in 50 mM NaClO(4)/NaOH solution, which is in good agreement with the size of the adsorbed PAAc molecules as measured using AFM. The obtained results could be rationalized in terms of binding-site configurations at step edges and the effect of the chemical environment on both local electric double layer charge and molecular conformation of the PAAc molecules. The point of zero charge of the ZnO(10-10) surface was measured with chemical force microscopy to be pH(PZC) = 10.2 ± 0.2. The specific adsorption of polyacrylic acid at non-polar ZnO step-edges can be explained by coordinative bonds formed between the carboxylic acid group and the Zn-surface atoms. On the hydroxide stabilized polar surface only weak hydrogen bonds can be formed in addition to van-der-Waals forces. Thus a "diffusion and trapping" mechanism keeps the adsorbed PAAc molecules mobile on the ZnO(0001)-Zn surface terraces due to small interaction forces until they are trapped at the (10-10) step faces by stronger coordinative bonds from the carboxylic groups to zinc atoms located in the first atomic layer of the crystal structure.
Christian Kunze; Markus Valtiner; Rolf Michels; Klaus Huber; Guido Grundmeier
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Publication Detail:
Type:  JOURNAL ARTICLE     Date:  2011-6-20
Journal Detail:
Title:  Physical chemistry chemical physics : PCCP     Volume:  -     ISSN:  1463-9084     ISO Abbreviation:  -     Publication Date:  2011 Jun 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2011-6-21     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  100888160     Medline TA:  Phys Chem Chem Phys     Country:  -    
Other Details:
Languages:  ENG     Pagination:  -     Citation Subset:  -    
University of Paderborn, Technical and Macromolecular Chemistry, Warburger Str. 100, 33098 Paderborn, Germany.
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