Materials Characterization


Thermogravimetric Analysis (TGA): TA Instruments TGA55 (1)

TGA is a technique for determining the thermal stability of materials, such as polymeric composites and pharmaceutical compounds.

  • Operation temperature: ambient to 1000oC
  • Gas atmosphere: Air or N2
  • Heating rates: 0.1 to 100 oC/min
  • Sample volume capacity: 100 μL Platinum-HT
  • Sample weight: 10 to 1000 mg
  • Accuracy: 0.1% of value or 10μg, whichever is greater
Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC): Mettler-Toledo DSC (2)

DSC is a technique for measuring heat flow of phase changes in solid or liquid states.

  • Operation Temperatures: -90°C to 600°C
  • Gas atmosphere: Air or N2
  • Heating rate up to 100K/min
  • Cooling rate up to 50K/min
  • Sample weight: 2 to 10 mg
  • Sample pan: Aluminum 40 uL
  • Isothermal, dynamic and TOPEM experiments
Rheological Measurement: TA Instruments Discovery Hybrid Rheometer HR-20 (1)

Rheology is the study of the flow and deformation of matter. A rheometer is an instrument that measures both the viscosity and viscoelasticity of fluids, semi-solids, and solids. The HR-20 can perform rheological measurements in rotation and oscillation modes.

  • Specifications:

    • Torque range: 1 nN·m to 200 mN·m

    • Torque Resolution: 0.1 nN·m

    • Angular velocity: up to 300 rad/s

    • Angular displacement resolution: 2 nrad

    • Normal force: up to 50 N

    • Normal Force Sensitivity: 0.005 N

    • Normal Force Resolution: 0.5 mN

    • Frequency Range: 1.0E-07 to 100 Hz

  • Accessories

    • Peltier Plate System:

      Advanced Peltier Plate: temperature range 0 – 200 oC, upper 20/50 mm 2 deg cones and plates, and solvent trap

      Peltier Concentric Cylinder: temperature range 0 – 150 oC

    • Environmental Test Chamber (ETC) oven:

      25 mm Parallel Plate Geometry and base

      Heating rates: up to 60 oC/min

      Temperature range: ambient to 600 oC

    • Tribology:

      Peltier Ball on three plates

Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR): Bruker INVENIO-R

FT-IR is a technique for identifying organic or inorganic materials by measuring the absorption of infrared radiation on the sample material versus wavelength.

  • Spectral range: 8000 to 180 cm-1

  • Spectral resolution: 0.16 cm-1

  • Wavenumber accuracy: 0.005 cm-1

  • Diamond ATR accessory A225/Q

  • Detector: RT-DLaTGS and LN-MCT Mid (D316/B)

  • Beamsplitter: MIR-KBr (T303/IR) and Mylar Multilayer

  • Sample compartment window: KBr and Polyethylene

  • Bruker ATR-FTIR Chemicals Library: ATR-LIB-CHEMICALS+

Bruker FT-IR 
Fourier transform near-infrared spectroscopy (FT-NIR): PerkinElmer Spectrum Two N FT-NIR (3)

NIR spectra comprise broad bands arising from overlapping absorptions corresponding mainly to overtones and combinations of vibrational modes involving CH, OH and NH chemical bonds. FT-NIR is a technique for determination of the concentrations of constituents such as water, protein, fat and carbohydrate in plant and animal tissues.

  • InGaAs detector enables to collect data over a total range of 10,000 to 4,000 cm-1
  • The Near Infrared Reflectance Module (NIRM) with sample spinner allows for collecting diffuse reflectance spectra of solids, granules, pastes, powders and turbid liquids
  • Heatable Transmission Module allows for easy elevated temperature measurements on samples



(1) Funding obtained via a grant led by Dr. Chris Kozak (ACESCentre project leader, and professor, Department of Chemistry) and collaborators from the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) via the Innovation Fund program and Government of Newfoundland & Labarador department of Industry, Energy & Technology

(2) Funding obtained via a grant let by Dr. Chris Kozak from the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) Leaders Opportunity Fund in 2009 with matching funds from Government of Newfoundland and Labrador Research & Development Corporation (now Department of Industry, Energy & Technology) through the  Industrial Research and Innovation Fund.

(3) Dr. Eric Vander Wal and Dr. Shawn Leroux purchased this equipment via a CFI JELF grant application and matching funds from the Research and Development Coorporation of NL