University CrestConducting Polymer-Coated LatexesArmes Research Group
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  4 September 2005

Since 1995 we have synthesised several series of conducting polymer-coated latexes [S. F. Lascelles and S. P. Armes, Adv. Mater., 1995; S. F. Lascelles and S. P. Armes, J. Mater. Chem., 1997; M. A. Khan and S. P. Armes, Adv. Mater., 2000]. Here the conducting polymer is deposited as an ultrathin overlayer onto pre-formed polystyrene latex particles. Remarkably, such nanoscale coatings are achieved with good control using 'wet' chemistry at ambient temperature. These micro-particles (see typical scanning electron micrograph below) were originally designed as smart radar-absorbing smokes for military camouflage/obscuration applications.

Conducting polymer-coated poly(methyl methacrylate) latex particles

Conducting polymer-coated poly(methyl methacrylate) latex particles

More recently, our conducting polymer-coated latex particles have been used by Dr. M. J. Burchell and co-workers at the University of Kent as mimics for carbonaceous micro-meteorites in hypervelocity experiments [M. J. Burchell, S. P. Armes et al., J. Phys. D: Appl. Phys., 1999; M. J. Burchell, S. P. Armes et al., Planetary Space Sci., 2002; J. Goldsworthy et al., Astronomy Astrophysics, 2003]. These calibration measurements have implications for the cosmic dust analyser on board the CASSINI space probe, which is currently encountering micro-meteorites on its voyage to Saturn. Thus our work is eventually expected to improve our understanding of the chemical composition of dust particles in the Solar System. New synthetic mimics for silicate- and sulfur-based micrometeorites are also being developed.

Selected Publications
"Synthesis and Characterization of Polypyrrole-Coated Sulfur-Rich Latex Particles: New Synthetic Mimics for Sulfur-Based Micrometeorites"
S. Fujii, S. P. Armes, R. Jeans, R. Devonshire, S. Warren, S. L. McArthur, M. J. Burchell, F. Postberg and R. Srama
Chemistry of Materials 2006, 18, 2758
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"Time of flight mass spectra of ionic plasmas produced from hypervelocity impacts of organic and mineralogical microparticles on a cosmic dust analyser"
B. J. Goldsworthy, M. J. Burchell, M. J. Cole, S. P. Armes, M. A. Khan, S. F. Lascelles, S. F. Green, M. Muller, J. A. M. McDonnell, R. Srama and S. W. Bigger
Astronomy and Astrophysics 2003, 409, 1151
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"Impact ionization experiments with low density conducting polymer-based micro-projectiles as analogies of solar system dusts"
M. J. Burchell, M. Willis, S. P. Armes, M. A. Khan, M. J. Percy and C. Perruchot
Planetary Space Science 2002, 50, 1025
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"Synthesis of gold-decorated latex particles using conducting polymer redox templates"
M. A. Khan, C. Perruchot, S. P. Armes and D. Randall
Journal of Materials Chemistry 2001, 11, 2363
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"Conducting polymer-coated latex particles"
M. A. Khan and S. P. Armes
Advanced Materials 2000, 12, 671
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"Surface characterization of poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene)-coated latex by x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy"
M. A. Khan, S. P. Armes, C. Perruchot, H. Ouamara, M. M. Chehimi, S. J. Greaves and J. F. Watts
Langmuir 2000, 16, 4171
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"Acceleration of conducting polymer-coated latexes as protectiles in hypervelocity impact experiments"
M. J. Burchell, M. J. Cole, S. F. Lascelles, M. A. Khan, C. Barthet, S. A. Wilson, D. B. Cairns and S. P. Armes
Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics 1999, 32, 1719
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"Synthesis and characterization of micrometer-sized, poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene)-coated polystyrene latexes"
M. A. Khan and S. P. Armes
Langmuir 1999, 15, 3469
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"Synthesis and characterisation of micrometer-sized, polypyrrole-coated polystyrene latexes"
S. F. Lascelles and S. P. Armes
Journal of Materials Chemistry 1997, 7, 1339
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"Synthesis and characterisation of micrometer-sized polypyrrole-coated polystyrene latexes"
S. F. Lascelles and S. P. Armes
Advanced Materials 1995, 7, 864
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Related Presentations
> "Polymer Chemistry, Hypervelocity Physics and the CASSINI Space Mission" [PDF; 4942KB]
School Presentation
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