Small-angle neutron scattering is used to investigate the self-assembling behaviour of poly(ε-caprolactone)-b-poly(ethylene oxide) diblock copolymers with various block lengths (i) in aqueous solution, (ii) in aqueous solution with the addition of sodium dodecyl sulphate (SDS) and (iii) at the silica–water interface. Micelles are observed under our experimental conditions due to the very small critical micellar concentration of these copolymers (0.01g/l). The poly(ε-caprolactone) core is surrounded by a poly(ethylene oxide) corona. The micellar form factors have been measured at low copolymer concentrations (0.2wt%) under selected contrast matching conditions. The data have been fitted to various analytical models to extract the micellar core and corona sizes. SDS is shown to induce partial micelle disruption together with an increase of the poly(ethylene oxide) corona extension from 25% (without SDS) to 70% (with SDS) of a completely extended PEO114 chain. Our data at the silica–water interface are compatible with the adsorption of micelles.
Physica B Condensed Matter 07/2004; 350(1). DOI:10.1016/j.physb.2004.03.233 · 1.28 Impact Factor