Symmetric diblock copolymer thin films confined between homogeneous and patterned surfaces: Simulations and theory
Journal of Chemical Physics
We have investigated the ability of a simple phenomenological theory to describe the behavior of symmetric diblock copolymer thin films confined between two hard surfaces. Prior knowledge of the morphology in the confined films is crucial for applying this theory to predict the phase diagram of such systems. Taking advantage of our observations in Monte Carlo simulations, we use the theory to construct phase diagrams for thin films confined between patterned-homogeneous surfaces, and obtain
... agreement with our results of simulations. Two conditions are essential for obtaining long-range ordered perpendicular lamellae: a lower stripe-patterned surface with the surface pattern period L s comparable to the bulk lamellar period L 0 , and an upper neutral or weakly preferential surface. We have also examined the undulation of perpendicular lamellae between two hard surfaces. For the cases of two homogeneous ͑preferential͒ surfaces and patterned-preferential surfaces, our calculations using the phenomenological theory indicate that the amplitudes of the undulation are on the same order of magnitude as observed in our Monte Carlo simulations, and are one order of magnitude larger than previously reported. The theory, however, is unable to capture the shape of the undulation. For the case of patterned-neutral surfaces, we find that an earlier analysis is unable to yield the undulations that would stabilize the perpendicular lamellar morphology. We have addressed this issue and obtained undulations that are consistent with our observations from Monte Carlo simulations.