Journal of Thermal Analysis and Calorimetry

, Volume 106, Issue 1, pp 81–84

Do biopolymers behave the same as synthetic high polymers?


DOI: 10.1007/s10973-011-1306-2

Cite this article as:
Wunderlich, B. J Therm Anal Calorim (2011) 106: 81. doi:10.1007/s10973-011-1306-2


The first measurements in our laboratory of some 55 years ago dealt with adiabatic calorimetry of linear, semicrystalline polyethylene. Quickly it became obvious that time needed to be controlled to study the metastable and unstable states. Shortly thereafter, my first students were building our own DTA, capable to give quantitative, time-dependent calorimetric data. Only few years later, we could present the quantitative link between molecular motion and heat capacity in the melting and glass-transition regions. One of these students involved in this study was Prof. Michael Jaffe. His study dealt with semicrystalline polyoxymethylene, a synthetic carbohydrate. He could use the first quantitative commercial equipment and modify it to heating with rates of 100 K min−1 and more. Today, rates reaching up to 107 K min−1 and faster are available for the analysis of unstable and small phases. The key question of this beginning study on biopolymer-related materials is the title question of this presentation for this symposium.


Thermal analysisBiopolymersHeat capacityMolecular motion

Copyright information

© Akadémiai Kiadó, Budapest, Hungary 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of ChemistryThe University of TennesseeKnoxvilleUSA
  2. 2.KnoxvilleUSA