Eur. Phys. J. E 2, 311-318
Triplet interactions in star polymer solutions
Institut für Theoretische Physik II,
Düsseldorf, D-40225 Düsseldorf, Germany
Received 1 September 1999 and Received in final form 18 January 2000
We analyze the effective triplet interactions between the centers of star polymers in a good solvent. Using an analytical short-distance expansion inspired by scaling theory, we deduce that the triplet part of the three-star force is attractive but only 11% of the pairwise part even for a close approach of three star polymers. We have also performed extensive computer simulations for different arm numbers f to extract the effective triplet force. The simulation data show good correspondence with the theoretical predictions. Our results justify the effective pair potential picture even beyond the star polymer overlap concentration.
82.70.Dd Colloids - 64.60.Fr Equilibrium properties near critical points, critical exponents - 61.20.Ja Computer simulation of liquid structure
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