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Projekt MGK: PhD Position

Patterns in curved (co)polymer films

Self-assembling block copolymers provide a powerful framework for producing nanopatterns for a diversity of applications, including nanoporous membranes for ultra-purification, solar cells, nanotemplates, organic optoelectronics, and UV polarizers, and many others. However, one frequent problem with the self-assembly approach is lack of long-range order due to pattern undulations and defects. Numerous methods to produce patterns with well-defined orientational order have been proposed, such as shear alignment, alignment through electric fields, zone and solvent annealing, or grapho- and chemo-epitaxy. Here, we explore another possible aligning factor, the geometry in which the block copolymer film system is embedded. In previous work, we have demonstrated that geometry can be an effective guiding field to induce long-range order and to prescribe the distribution and density of topological defects.

The goal of the PhD project is to study the equilibrium and kinetic properties of self-assembling block copolymer thin films deposited onto curved substrates. The central challenge is to develop a meaningful theory that allows identifying the leading parameters that control the intrinsic order in curved films carrying self-assembled patterns. Special attention shall be given to the coupling between pattern morphologies and local symmetry and geometry.

This work will be carried out in a joint effort between Mainz and an experimental partner group in Argentina.

If you are interested, please send your documents (CV and transcripts) to Friederike Schmid (schmidfr @ uni-mainz.de).

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