Hypothesis: The polymeric cations of polymeric ionic liquids (PILs) can adsorb from the bulk of a conventional ionic liquid (IL) to the Au(1 1 1) electrode interface and form a boundary layer. The interfacial properties of the PIL boundary layer may be tuned by potential. Experiments: Atomic force microscopy has been used to investigate the changes of surface morphology, normal and lateral forces of a 5 wt% PIL/IL mixture as a function of potential. Findings: Polymeric cations adsorb strongly to Au(1 1 1) and form a polymeric cation-enriched boundary layer at −1.0 V. This boundary layer binds less strongly to the surface at open circuit potential (OCP) and weakly at + 1.0 V. The polymeric cation chains are compressed at −1.0 V and OCP owing to electrical attractions with the electrode surface, but fully stretched at + 1.0 V due to electrical repulsions. The lateral forces of the 5 wt% PIL/IL mixture at −1.0 V and OCP are higher than at + 1.0 V as the polymeric cation-enriched boundary layer is rougher and has stronger interactions with the AFM probe; at + 1.0 V, the lateral force is low and comparable to pure conventional IL due to displacement of polymeric cations with conventional anions in the boundary layer.
|Number of pages||9|
|Journal||Journal of Colloid and Interface Science|
|Publication status||Published - 15 Jan 2022|