JOURNAL OF POLYMER RESEARCH, vol.24, no.8, 2017 (SCI-Expanded)
In situ synthesis of conductive polymers, poly(Aniline) (p(An)), poly(Pyrrole) (p(Py)), and poly(Thiophene) (p(Th)) within network of superporous cryogels with tunable functionalities as neutral poly(acrylamide) (p(AAm), anionic poly(acrylic acid) (p(AAc)), and cationic poly(4-vinylpyridine) (p(4-VP)) were carried out via oxidation polymerization technique. The highest conductivity values were measured for p(AAm)/p(An) semi-IPN cryogel with 1.4 x 10(-2) S. cm(-1) and for p(AAc)/p(Py) cryogel with 3.2 x 10(-4) S. cm(-1). In addition, to increase the amounts of conductive polymers within cryogel networks, reloading/ polymerization cycle was carried out thrice, and found that there is no significant increase in the amounts of conductive polymers and the measured conductivity values. The prepared p(AAm), p(AAc), and p(4-VP) cryogels and their corresponding p(An), p(Py), and p(Th) composites were tested potential sensor materials against HCl and NH3 vapor. The changes on conductivities for bare p(4-VP) cryogel were observed as 70 and 52-fold increase uponHCl and NH3 gas treatment, respectively. The p(4-VP)/p(An) p(An) composites showed 7-fold conductivity decrease upon the treatments of HCl and NH3 vapors. The p(AAm)/p(Py) composite responded 2-fold increase upon HCl vapor exposure and 50-fold decrease upon NH3 vapor exposure. Furthermore, p(AAm)/p(Th) cryogel composite responded 7-fold decrease and 300-fold increase in their conductivities upon HCl and NH3 vapor exposure, respectively.