Acid-Group-Content-Dependent Proton Conductivity Mechanisms at the Interlayer of Poly(N-dodecylacrylamide-co-acrylic acid) Copolymer Multilayer Nanosheet Films

Takuma Sato, Mayu Tsukamoto, Shunsuke Yamamoto, Masaya Mitsuishi, Tokuji Miyashita, Shusaku Nagano, Jun Matsui

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    14 Citations (Scopus)


    The effect of the content of acid groups on the proton conductivity at the interlayer of polymer-nanosheet assemblies was investigated. For that purpose, amphiphilic poly(N-dodecylacrylamide-co-acrylic acid) copolymers [p(DDA/AA)] with varying contents of AA were synthesized by free radical polymerization. Surface pressure (π)-area (A) isotherms of these copolymers indicated that stable polymer monolayers are formed at the air/water interface for AA mole fraction (n) ≤ 0.49. In all cases, a uniform dispersion of the AA groups in the polymer monolayer was observed. Subsequently, polymer monolayers were transferred onto solid substrates using the Langmuir-Blodgett (LB) technique. X-ray diffraction (XRD) analyses of the multilayer films showed strong Bragg diffraction peaks, suggesting a highly uniform lamellar structure for the multilayer films. The proton conductivity of the multilayer films parallel to the direction of the layer planes were measured by impedance spectroscopy, which revealed that the conductivity increased with increasing values of n. Activation energies for proton conduction of ∼0.3 and 0.42 eV were observed for n ≥ 0.32 and n = 0.07, respectively. Interestingly, the proton conductivity of a multilayer film with n = 0.19 did not follow the Arrhenius equation. These results were interpreted in terms of the average distance between the AA groups (lAA), and it was concluded that, for n ≥ 0.32, an advanced 2D hydrogen bonding network was formed, while for n = 0.07, lAA is too long to form such hydrogen bonding networks. The lAA for n = 0.19 is intermediate to these extremes, resulting in the formation of hydrogen bonding networks at low temperatures, and disruption of these networks at high temperatures due to thermally induced motion. These results indicate that a high proton conductivity with low activation energy can be achieved, even under weakly acidic conditions, by arranging the acid groups at an optimal distance.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)12897-12902
    Number of pages6
    Issue number45
    Publication statusPublished - 2017 Nov 14

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Materials Science(all)
    • Condensed Matter Physics
    • Surfaces and Interfaces
    • Spectroscopy
    • Electrochemistry


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