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Visualization of Polymer Crystallization by In Situ Combination of Atomic Force Microscopy and Fast Scanning Calorimetry

1
Institute of Physics and Competence Centre CALOR, University of Rostock, 18051 Rostock, Germany
2
Department of Polymer Science and Engineering, School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Key Laboratory of High-Performance Polymer Materials and Technology of Ministry of Education, and The State Key Laboratory of Coordination Chemistry, Nanjing University, Nanjing 210093, China
3
Shenyang Research Institute, Nanjing University, Shenyang 224300, China
4
Interdisciplinary Center for Transfer-oriented Research in Natural Sciences (IWE TFN), Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg, 06099 Halle/Saale, Germany
5
Butlerov Institute of Chemistry, Kazan Federal University, 18 Kremlyovskaya Street, Kazan 420008, Russia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Polymers 2019, 11(5), 890; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym11050890
Received: 26 March 2019 / Revised: 3 May 2019 / Accepted: 9 May 2019 / Published: 15 May 2019
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Abstract

A chip-based fast scanning calorimeter (FSC) is used as a fast hot-stage in an atomic force microscope (AFM). This way, the morphology of materials with a resolution from micrometers to nanometers after fast thermal treatments becomes accessible. An FSC can treat the sample isothermally or at heating and cooling rates up to 1 MK/s. The short response time of the FSC in the order of milliseconds enables rapid changes from scanning to isothermal modes and vice versa. Additionally, FSC provides crystallization/melting curves of the sample just imaged by AFM. We describe a combined AFM-FSC device, where the AFM sample holder is replaced by the FSC chip-sensor. The sample can be repeatedly annealed at pre-defined temperatures and times and the AFM images can be taken from exactly the same spot of the sample. The AFM-FSC combination is used for the investigation of crystallization of polyamide 66 (PA 66), poly(ether ether ketone) (PEEK), poly(butylene terephthalate) (PBT) and poly(ε-caprolactone) (PCL). View Full-Text
Keywords: Fast Scanning Calorimetry (FSC); Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM); polymer morphology; crystal nucleation and growth Fast Scanning Calorimetry (FSC); Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM); polymer morphology; crystal nucleation and growth
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Zhang, R.; Zhuravlev, E.; Androsch, R.; Schick, C. Visualization of Polymer Crystallization by In Situ Combination of Atomic Force Microscopy and Fast Scanning Calorimetry. Polymers 2019, 11, 890.

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