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Phase equilibrium and structural characterization of systems formed by association of complex salts containing cationic surfactants and anionic polymers


This project aims at applying a new methodology of direct isolation of complex salts containing oppositely-charged surfactants and polymers for the study of their phase diagrams and structural elucidation of the liquid crystalline phases formed in water and in mixtures with alcohols. Structural investigation will be performed by means of SAXS analyses. New copolymers will be prepared with different molecular architectures: random copolymers containing ethoxylated pendant groups along a polyacrylate chain, and block copolymers containing anionic and non-ionic blocks. These copolymers should display different solubilities and, hence, different tendencies to self-assembling represented by different phase diagrams. This project also aims at investigating the isotropic phases containing these complex salts, both aqueous and alcoholic ones, using techniques such as isothermal titration calorimetry )to study their aggregation), or dynamic light scattering and NMR diffusiometry (to investigate their sizes). Additionally, we will prepare liposomes formed by complex salts of double-chained surfactants in order to compare their properties, mainly size and kinetic stability, with those of traditional liposomes (with monomeric counterions). (AU)