J. Phys. II France
Volume 3, Numéro 12, December 1993
Page(s) 1779 - 1786
DOI: 10.1051/jp2:1993229
J. Phys. II France 3 (1993) 1779-1786

Conformation of a polymer chain dissolved in a critical fluid

Thomas Vilgis1, Anne Sans2 and Gérard Jannink2

1  Max-Planck-Institut für Polymerforschung, Ackermannweg 10, 55021 Mainz, Germany
2  L.L.B., CEA-Saclay, 91191 Gif-sur-Yvette, france

(Received 11 June 1993, revised 29 July 1993, accepted 31 August 1993)

The problem of a polymer chain immersed in a critical fluid, e.g. a mixture of low molecular weight solvent close to its critical point, is studied and reformulated in a field theoretic framework. The starting point is a path integral formulation of the polymer chain which interacts with the solvent molecules. If the critical solvent is approximated by a Gaussian model all classical results are recovered, i.e. the polymer chain collapses close to the critical point. These results become modified at the critical point where non-classical exponents determine the precise form of the fluctuation induced interaction potential between two monomers of the chain, and so its conformation.

05.40 - 05.70J - 36.20

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