Researchers from the Department of Chemistry Tin Klačić and Davor Kovačević, in collaboration with Klemen Bohinc from the University of Ljubljana, have published the scientific publication Suppressing the Hofmeister Anion Effect by Thermal Annealing of Thin-Film Multilayers Made of Weak Polyelectrolytes in the prestigious journal of the American Chemical Society Macromolecules (IF 6.057).
The published paper presents the results of a study on the influence of the type of monovalent anion on the formation and properties of nanofilms prepared from poly(allylamine hydrochloride) and poly(acrylic acid). In this study, it was found that film thickness, as well as the roughness and wettability of its surface, depend on the used background salt. Thus, for example, the thickest, roughest, and most hydrophobic films were obtained by preparation in the presence of NaClO4, and the thinnest, smoothest, and most hydrophilic by preparation in the presence of NaF. Furthermore, in the publication it is shown how this ion-specific effect can be suppressed, in the context of roughness and wettability, by mild heating of the mentioned films during their preparation. For example, by this process it is possible to prepare films with an extremely smooth surface that will differ in thickness.
This study has expanded the possibilities of designing and preparing thin-films with targeted properties, which consequently broadens the possibilities of applying such nanomaterials in the development of new technologies.
The research was performed as a part of the Croatian-Slovenian bilateral research project Modulation of fruit polyphenolic profile by sustainable postharvest physical treatments (APPLPEMs, IPS-2020-01-6126) funded by the Croatian Science Foundation.