Poly(vinylidenefluoride) containing (block) copolymers - Novel ways to piezoelectric nanofoams, magnetoelectrics and polymer film dielectrics


In a rapidly developing world, the use of smart materials becomes increasingly important when executing sophisticated functions within novel and miniaturized devices. The proposed research line addresses societal-relevant and urgent problems - such as reliable energy storage, sensing and the need for high data storage capacity ? by designing novel materials via macromolecular design routes.

Precise control of geometries with nanometer-size dimensions in materials is critical to optimizing their performance, but this goal remains difficult to achieve. A very elegant way to freely tune all size parameters and aspect ratios of a material is the use of morphologies that arise from the self-assembly of block copolymers as a template for the design of novel materials. Incorporating at least one polymeric block that bears additional functionalities such as piezoelectricity or ferromagnetism opens up the possibility to tailor well-defined advanced hybrid materials with highly improved properties. Semicrystalline polymers such as poly(vinylidenefluoride) (PVDF) have strong piezo-, pyro- and ferroelectric properties and are therefore ideal candidates for the proposed research. In comparison to currently used inorganic ferroelectric ceramics PVDF has superior properties due to low permittivity, low thermal conductivity, softness and flexibility which renders it easily processable, good impedance matching to air and water and decreased toxicity.

In the proposed research line we will use the self-assembly of block copolymers containing one piezoelectric block (PVDF) to define with nanometer accuracy the complete three-dimensional structure of functional solids (e.g. organics, metals, inorganic oxides, magnetic materials) and by this approach we will subsequently be able to design

- novel hydrophone and sensing devices assembled from tailor-made piezoelectric nanofoams,

- advanced four-state memory prototype devices manufactured from polymer hybrid and fully organic magnetoelectric materials and

- high-energy density capacitors based on innovative multiblock copolymer film dielectrics.


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Prof. dr. K.U. Loos

Verbonden aan

Rijksuniversiteit Groningen, Faculty of Science and Engineering (FSE), Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials


M. Golkaram, Dr. A.H. Hofman, Prof. dr. K.U. Loos, Dr. N.L. Meereboer, Dr. I. Terzic, Dr. V.S.D. Voet


01/07/2014 tot 30/06/2019