Chapter 5: Monitoring Interfaces of Thermo- and pH-responsive Polymers Using Solvent Relaxation
Published:17 Aug 2022
I. Chakraborty and R. Bhattacharyya, in NMR Spectroscopy for Probing Functional Dynamics at Biological Interfaces, ed. A. Bhunia, H. S. Atreya, and N. Sinha, The Royal Society of Chemistry, 2022, ch. 5, pp. 122-141.
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We discuss here some of the recent developments of NMR methods which rely on solvent relaxation and yield valuable information about the interface of smart polymers in aqueous solutions. Smart polymers, such as pH-responsive or thermotropic, form structures in the form of micelles or globules in solutions. Such structures could be controlled by varying parameters which control the behavior of the smart polymer, such as the pH or temperature of the solution. These structures have interfaces where proton exchange with the solvent takes place. This proton exchange affects the relaxation of the solvent. As such, by monitoring the changes in the relaxation of the solvent with respect to the pH or temperature of the solvent, one can monitor the interface. This chapter provides simple explanations of the principles involved in the solvent relaxation method.