Smart polymers that can exhibit stimuli-sensitive properties are becoming important in many commercial applications. These polymers can change shape, strength and pore size based on external factors such as temperature, pH and stress. The objective of this project was to develop a technique to produce multiple layers of smart polymers such as PAA and NIPAAM to respond to pH. Crosslinked PAA and NIPAAM samples were produced by Layer by layer (LbL) assembly, using polystyrene as a non-polar barrier. The swelling behavior of the crosslinked gels were characterized at acidic pH values. The crosslinked multilayered gels show significant reversible swelling when the pH is changed and thus can act as effective sensors or drug delivery vehicles.
Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Major Qualifying Project
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