Primary Investigator

Sergei S. Sheiko
Caudill 157
  919-843-5270
  sergei@email.unc.edu

Administration

Aisha McClellan
Administrative Assistant
Kenan C244
  919-962-6096
  aishamc@email.unc.edu

Mailing Address

Department of Chemistry
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
CB 3290
Chapel Hill, NC 27599-3290

Shipping Address

The Sheiko Group
Caudill Laboratories, Room 157
Department of Chemistry
131 South Road
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Chapel Hill, NC 27599-3290

Mixtures are Everywhere

Research Image

Usually large objects, particles and macromolecules, of dissimilar chemical nature do not mix. In new research published in Nature Materials, researchers in the Sheiko Group, in collaboration with the Rubinstein Group, have shown that mixing can be enhanced by changing the molecular architecture from linear chains to branched/brush-like molecules, while maintaining the same chemical structure. Macromolecules typically phase separately unless their shapes and chemical compositions are tailored to explicitly drive mixing. This propensity may be overcome for copolymers wherein chemically dissimilar components are covalently tethered to one another. But now research has shown that physical constraints can drive spontaneous mixing of chemically different species.