Cordella, D.; Debuigne, A.; Jerome, C.; Kochovski, Z.; Taton, D.; Detrembleur, C.: One-Pot Synthesis of Double Poly(Ionic Liquid) Block Copolymers by Cobalt-Mediated Radical Polymerization-Induced Self-Assembly (CMRPISA) in Water. Macromolecular Rapid Communications 37 (2016), p. 1181-1187

Amphiphilic double poly(ionic liquid) (PIL) block copolymers are directly prepared by cobalt-mediated radical polymerization induced self-assembly (CMR-PISA) in water of N-vinyl imidazolium monomers carrying distinct alkyl chains. The cobalt-mediated radical polymerization of N-vinyl-3-ethyl imidazolium bromide (VEtImBr) is first carried out until high conversion in water at 30 °C, using an alkyl bis(acetylacetonate)cobalt(III) adduct as initiator and controlling agent. The as-obtained hydrophilic poly(N-vinyl-3-ethyl imidazolium bromide) (PVEtImBr) is then used as a macroinitiator for the CMR-PISA of N-vinyl-3-octyl imidazolium bromide (VOcImBr). Self-assembly of the amphiphilic PVEtImBr-b-PVOcImBr block copolymer, i.e., of PIL-b-PIL-type, rapidly takes place in water, forming polymer nanoparticles consisting of a hydrophilic PVEtImBr corona and a hydrophobic PVOcImBr core. Preliminary investigation into the effect of the size of the hydrophobic block on the dimension of the nanoparticles is also described.