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In situ Imaging of Single Polyelectrolyte Chains with the Atomic Force Microscope

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Abstract: This article discusses the possibilities offered by modern atomic force microscopes (AFMs) with ultra-small cantilevers to perform in situ imaging of single adsorbed polyelectrolytes in aqueous solutions. We demonstrate that such AFM techniques permit high quality images of single polyelectrolyte molecules to be obtained. These images can then be used to qualitatively address differences in the adsorbed conformations for different polyelectrolyte architectures. Moreover, such images can be also analyzed quantitatively. As an example, we discuss the determination of the persistence length of adsorbed polyelectrolytes.
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Keywords: ADSORPTION; AFM; CONFORMATION; IMAGE ANALYSIS; MICA; POLYELECTROLYTE

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 February 2019

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  • International Journal for Chemistry and Official Membership Journal of the Swiss Chemical Society (SCS) and its Divisions

    CHIMIA, a scientific journal for chemistry in the broadest sense, is published 10 times a year and covers the interests of a wide and diverse readership. Contributions from all fields of chemistry and related areas are considered for publication in the form of Review Articles and Notes. A characteristic feature of CHIMIA are the thematic issues, each devoted to an area of great current significance.

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