Single Chain Conformations

  • Gert R. Strobl


Condensed matter is composed of strongly interacting molecules, and discussions of the bulk properties of simple low molar mass compounds therefore focus from the beginning on the role of the interaction forces between different molecules in establishing thermal equilibrium. In dealing with polymeric systems, one encounters a different situation. As each macromolecule possesses a huge number of internal degrees of freedom, the analysis of the properties of the individual polymer becomes an important first point of concern. It is obvious that understanding of single chain behavior is a necessary prerequisite for treatments of aggregate properties, but in fact, it implies even more and leads in many cases to a major step forward. There are, of course, effects which are dominated by the intermolecular forces, like the phase behavior of binary polymer mixtures, or the flow properties of polymer melts, but other important phenomena, in particular essential parts of the viscoelasticity, are much under the control of the dynamic properties of the individual molecules. It is therefore quite natural and also necessary, to start a lecture series on polymer physics with a discussion of the conformational states of single chains.


Partition Function Fractal Dimension Virial Coefficient Gaussian Distribution Function Persistence Length 
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Further Reading

  1. R.H. Boyd, P.J. Phillips: The Science of Polymer Molecules, Cambridge University Press, 1993Google Scholar
  2. P.J. Flory: Statistical Mechanics of Chain Molecules, John Wiley amp; Sons, 1969.Google Scholar
  3. P.-G. de Gennes: Scaling Concepts in Polymer Physics, Cornell University Press, 1979Google Scholar
  4. A.Y. Grosberg, A.R. Khokhlov: Statistical Physics of Macromolecules, AIP Press, 1994Google Scholar
  5. W.L. Mattice, U.W. Suter Conformational Theory of Large Molecules - The Rotational Isomeric State Model in Macromolecular Systems, Wiley amp; Sons, 1994Google Scholar
  6. H. Tadokoro: Structure of Crystalline Polymers,John Wiley amp; Sons, 1979 Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gert R. Strobl
    • 1
  1. 1.Fakultät für PhysikAlbert-Ludwigs-UniversitätFreiburg im BreisgauGermany

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