The problem of the molecular motion in (polymeric) liquids approaching the glass transition or under confinement-where dynamic or structural constraints at the borders of a domain affect the bulk dynamics-is addressed. A statistical thermodynamic approach is proposed for the description of this phenomenology. Despite its incompleteness, the model allows for the estimate, from just mechanical and/or dielectric relaxation measurements, of both the chemical potential barrier for the conformational changes and the size of the regions where these changes take place. The relevant arguments are developed with constant reference to the philosophical framework proposed by Karl Popper for a general view of science and its relationship with less scientific areas of thought.
1 Jan 2011
Istituto Lombardo-Accademia di Scienze e Lettere-Rendiconti di Scienze