Skip to Main Content
Your organization might have access to this article on the publisher's site. To check, click on this link:http://dx.doi.org/+10.1063/1.1447317
Recently, a technique based on energy dispersive x-ray diffraction has been proposed to follow the polymer phase transitions. However, the potentialities of this method were not clear, as well as the experimental conditions in which it is more convenient than differential scanning calorimetry, generally used for the same purpose. In the present letter, the answer to this question is provided. It is shown that the two methods are complementary, rather than equivalent, the heating rate being the relevant parameter to establish which is preferable. The demonstration of this statement is given through the observation of the complex thermal properties of a reference sample studied in both ways at progressively lower heating rates. The connection between such unusual application of x-ray diffraction and the differential scanning calorimetry is discussed in terms of the two possible definitions of entropy. © 2002 American Institute of Physics.