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					                         Ben Dach       Page 1 2/2/2010

       Behavioral Studies of Matrix-Free Silica Nanocomposite Networks

1) Silica nanoparticles purchased from Aldrich
       a. TEM to characterize the size distribution of the nanoparticles
       b. IR to detect functional groups on the nanoparticles

2) Azide/Alkyne functionalization of Silica
      a. TEM to characterize the size distribution of the nanoparticles
      b. IR to detect functional groups on the nanoparticles
      c. TGA to determine the extent of the reaction and surface coverage
      d. Contact Angle to see differences between the functionalized surfaces
      e. XPS to detect the N atoms in the azide functionalization

3) Azide/Alkyne heterobifunctional polymers (PS/PtBA) grafting to Silica
      a. TEM to characterize the size distribution of the nanoparticles
      b. IR to detect functional groups on the nanoparticles
      c. TGA to determine the extent of the reaction and surface coverage
      d. Contact Angle to see differences between the functionalized surfaces
      e. XPS to detect the atoms in the surface moieties

4) Formation of several types of matrix-free nanocomposites
      a. Short Linkers (Si-N3 + Alkyne-Si)
      b. Long Linkers (Si-PS-N3 + Alkyne-PtBA-Si or same polymers)
      c. Medium Linkers (A combination of short ligands with long polymer
         ligands)

5) Characterization and Behavioral Studies of Nanocomposite Networks
      a. TEM to visualize the created network of nanoparticles
      b. IR to detect functional groups in the nanocomposite network
      c. TGA to determine the extent of the reaction
      d. Rheology to investigate the point of gellation and mechanical properties of
          the nanocomposite networks

				
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