This grant will provide partial support for the acquisition of a modern differential scanning calorimetry package (DSC), including a theromogravimetric analyzer (TGA) and accessories for studying phase transitions at elevated pressure and at low temperature. This system will have a major impact on several materials oriented projects at the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB). Of major importance is the use of DSC data for understanding the formation or presence of microheterogeneous phases in multicomponent materials. The instrument will enhance projects concerned with the design of amorphous organic glasses suitable for use in emerging optoelectronic technologies, the synthesis of multi-component organic crystals, the characterization of biopolymers with liquid crystalline properties, the study of tough block copolymers and the solid state characterization of multicomponent networks for device applications. These studies require DSC analysis to understand long range order in sold samples and the spatial relationship of different components in complex mixtures.
The success of the research and teaching missions of UCSB's Materials program depends on the availability of modern instrumentation. A new Ph.D. program in Chemistry, which emphasizes research in Materials Chemistry, was established this year. In this program a broad education is encouraged and courses in fields such as Physics, Chemical Engineering and Materials Science are part of the curriculum. Modern instrumentation, such as the DSC system that is shared between groups of different departments will enhance collaborative interactions between students and faculty engaged in Materials research. *** This equipment will significantly enhance the research capabilities, and the educational experiences of students.