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Comment on “Discovery of a tetracontinuous, aqueous lyotropic network phase with unusual 3D-hexagonal symmetry” by M. Mahanthappa, G. Sorenson and A. Schmitt

Fischer, M.G., Hyde, S.T. and Schröder-Turk, G.E. (2015) Comment on “Discovery of a tetracontinuous, aqueous lyotropic network phase with unusual 3D-hexagonal symmetry” by M. Mahanthappa, G. Sorenson and A. Schmitt. Soft Matter, 11 (6). pp. 1226-1227.

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Abstract

The article by Sorenson et al. (Soft Matter10, 8229, 2014) reports a novel phase formed by gemini surfactants in water, of symmetry P63/mcm and based on a triple intergrowth of three identical degree-three networks, known as 3etc(193). This phase is the first lyotropic liquid crystalline phase based on the intergrowth of a triplet of network- or labyrinth-like hydrophobic domains. We provide here results from self-consistent field theory that demonstrate that the same morphology is almost stable in standard AB diblock copolymer melts; at the phase transition between the double gyroid phase and the hexagonal columnar phase, the 3etc(193) morphology only incurs a marginal free energy penalty compared to the equilibrium phases. Interestingly, the ratio of lattice parameters c/a = 0.955 of the 3etc(193) as a diblock morphology is very close to that of the gemini surfactant phase and of the related IBN-9 mesoporous silicate phase (Han et al., Nat. Chem.1, 123, 2009). Based on the combination of these results, we hypothesise that the 3etc(193) morphology is likely a generic phase in soft materials, rather than an oddity.

Item Type: Journal Article
Publisher: Royal Society of Chemistry
Copyright: © 2015 Royal Society of Chemistry
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/30559
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