Calorimetric and relaxation properties of xylitol-water mixtures
Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift, 2012

We present the first broadband dielectric spectroscopy (BDS) and differential scanning calorimetry study of supercooled xylitol-water mixtures in the whole concentration range and in wide frequency (10(-2)-10(6) Hz) and temperature (120-365 K) ranges. The calorimetric glass transition, T-g, decreases from 247 K for pure xylitol to about 181 K at a water concentration of approximately 37 wt. %. At water concentrations in the range 29-35 wt. % a plentiful calorimetric behaviour is observed. In addition to the glass transition, almost simultaneous crystallization and melting events occurring around 230-240 K. At higher water concentrations ice is formed during cooling and the glass transition temperature increases to a steady value of about 200 K for all higher water concentrations. This Tg corresponds to an unfrozen xylitol-water solution containing 20 wt. % water. In addition to the true glass transition we also observed a glass transition-like feature at 220 K for all the ice containing samples. However, this feature ismore likely due to ice dissolution [A. Inaba and O. Andersson, Thermochim. Acta, 461, 44 (2007)]. In the case of the BDS measurements the presence of water clearly has an effect on both the cooperative a-relaxation and the secondary beta-relaxation. The a-relaxation shows a non-Arrhenius temperature dependence and becomes faster with increasing concentration of water. The fragility of the solutions, determined by the temperature dependence of the a-relaxation close to the dynamic glass transition, decreases with increasing water content up to about 26 wt. % water, where ice starts to form. This decrease in fragility with increasing water content is most likely caused by the increasing density of hydrogen bonds, forming a network-like structure in the deeply supercooled regime. The intensity of the secondary beta-relaxation of xylitol decreases noticeably already at a water content of 2 wt. %, and at a water content above 5 wt. % it has been replaced by a considerably stronger water (w) relaxation at about the same frequency. However, the similarities in time scale and activation energy between the w-relaxation and the beta-relaxation of xylitol at water contents below 13 wt. % suggest that the w-relaxation is governed, in some way, by the beta-relaxation of xylitol, since clusters of water molecules are rare at these water concentrations. At higher water concentrations the intensity and relaxation rate of the w-relaxation increase rapidly with increasing water content (up to the concentration where ice starts to form), most likely due to a rapid increase of small water clusters where an increasing number of water molecules interacting with other water molecules.


Khalid Elamin

Chalmers, Teknisk fysik, Kondenserade materiens fysik

Johan Sjöström

Chalmers, Teknisk fysik, Kondenserade materiens fysik

Helen Jansson

Chalmers, Teknisk fysik, Kondenserade materiens fysik

Jan Swenson

Chalmers, Teknisk fysik, Kondenserade materiens fysik

Journal of Chemical Physics

0021-9606 (ISSN) 1089-7690 (eISSN)

Vol. 136 104508