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In‐situ Nucleation‐Growth Strategy for Controllable Heterogeneous Supramolecular Polymerization of Liquid Crystalline Block Copolymers and Their Hierarchical Assembly

The self-assembly morphologies of subunits are largely governed by thermodynamics, which plays a less important role in dimensional control. Particularly for one-dimensional assemblies from block copolymers (BCPs), the negligible energy difference between short and long ones imposes great challenges in length control. Herein, we report that by incorporating additional polymers to induce in-situ nucleation and trigger the subsequent growth, controllable supramolecular polymerization driven by mesogenic ordering effect could be realized from liquid crystalline BCPs. The length of the resultant fibrillar supramolecular polymers (SP) is controlled by tuning the ratio between nucleating and growing components. Depending on the choice of BCPs, the SPs can be homopolymer-like, heterogeneous triblock, and even pentablock copolymer-like. More interestingly, with insoluble BCP as a nucleating component, amphiphilic SPs are fabricated, which can undergo spontaneous hierarchical assembly.

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