Ring-linear mixtures of semiflexible rubber bands

Gómez LR, García NA, Fernández Márquez JC, Pöschel T (2023)

Publication Type: Journal article

Publication year: 2023


Book Volume: 25

Article Number: 083004

Journal Issue: 8

DOI: 10.1088/1367-2630/ace844

Open Access Link: https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/1367-2630/ace844


During the synthesis of ring polymers, it is quite common to obtain mixtures containing both ring and linear molecules. Recent studies, including experiments and simulations, have shown that even small quantities of linear molecules can significantly influence the shape of ring polymers, ultimately altering their rheological response. To further explore this phenomenon, we investigated blends of semiflexible linear and ring filaments by using disordered assemblies of open and closed rubber bands. We employed x-ray tomography to analyze the structure of these mixtures, focusing on how the length and composition of linear bands influenced the overall mixture. In contrast to the behavior observed in fully-flexible polymers, our findings revealed that increasing the concentration of linear bands could actually decrease the average size of rings within a semiflexible ring-linear mixture. This outcome is attributable to a reduction in inter-ring threading, which naturally occurs as the proportion of rings diminishes. To validate our findings, we conducted molecular dynamics simulations on semiflexible ring-linear polymer mixtures in bulk. These simulations confirmed that our results stem from the semiflexibility of the bands or chains rather than confinement or athermal conditions.

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Gómez, L.R., García, N.A., Fernández Márquez, J.C., & Pöschel, T. (2023). Ring-linear mixtures of semiflexible rubber bands. New Journal of Physics, 25(8). https://dx.doi.org/10.1088/1367-2630/ace844


Gómez, Leopoldo R., et al. "Ring-linear mixtures of semiflexible rubber bands." New Journal of Physics 25.8 (2023).

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