Format

Send to

Choose Destination
Nat Chem. 2019 May;11(5):470-477. doi: 10.1038/s41557-019-0235-8. Epub 2019 Apr 1.

Shear-induced assembly of a transient yet highly stretchable hydrogel based on pseudopolyrotaxanes.

Author information

1
Shenzhen Grubbs Institute and Department of Chemistry, Southern University of Science and Technology, Shenzhen, China.
2
Shenzhen Grubbs Institute and Department of Chemistry, Southern University of Science and Technology, Shenzhen, China. jiangw@sustech.edu.cn.

Abstract

Dissipative self-assembly is common in biological systems, where it serves to maintain a far-from-equilibrium functional state through fuel consumption. Synthetic dissipative systems have been prepared that can mimic some of the properties of biological systems, but they often show poor mechanical performance. Here, we report a shear-induced transient hydrogel that is highly stretchable. The system is constructed by adding Cu(II) into the aqueous solution of a pseudopolyrotaxane, which is itself formed by threading molecular tubes on polyethylene glycol chains. Vigorous shaking transforms the solution into a gel, which gradually relaxes back to the sol state over time. This cycle can be repeated at least five times. A mechanism is proposed that relies on a shear-induced transition from intrachain to interchain coordination and subsequent thermal relaxation. The far-from-equilibrium hydrogel is highly stretchable, which is probably due to 'frictional' sliding of the molecular tubes on the polyethylene glycol chains. On shaking, the hydrogel undergoes fast self-healing.

PMID:
30936522
DOI:
10.1038/s41557-019-0235-8

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Nature Publishing Group
Loading ...
Support Center