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Title: Stability of the sectored morphology of polymer crystallites
Authors: Jaya Kumar, A.
Hatwalne, Yashodhan
Muthukumar, Murugappan
Keywords: Crystallization
Polymers & Soft Matter
Poly(Vinylidene Fluoride)
Issue Date: 26-Sep-2016
Publisher: American Physical Society
Citation: Physical Review E, 2016, Vol.94, p032506
Abstract: When an entangled interpenetrating collection of long flexible polymer chains dispersed in a suitable solvent is cooled to low enough temperatures, thin lamellar crystals form. Remarkably, these lamellae are sectored, with several growth sectors that have differing melting temperatures and growth kinetics, eluding so far an understanding of their origins. We present a theoretical model to explain this six-decade-old challenge by addressing the elasticity of fold surfaces of finite-sized lamella in the presence of disclination-type topological defects arising from anisotropic line tension. Entrapment of a disclination defect in a lamella results in sectors separated by walls, which are soliton solutions of a two-dimensional elliptic sine-Gordon equation. For flat square morphologies, exact results show that sectored squares are more stable than plain squares if the dimensionless anisotropic line tension parameter α = γan/ h4Kφ (γan = anisotropic line tension, h4 = fold energy parameter, Kφ = elastic constant for two-dimensional orientational deformation) is above a critical value, which depends on the size of the square.
Description: Open Access.
ISSN: 2470-0053-(online)
2470-0045 (print)
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Copyright: 2016 The American Physical Society
Appears in Collections:Research Papers (SCM)

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