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A Novel Rheological Microscope for Flow Studies of Thermotropic Polymers and Polymer Blends: Droplet Deformation

  • P. T. Mather (a1), H. R. Stüber (a2), K. P. Chaffee (a1), T. S. Haddad (a3), A. Romo-Uribe (a1) and J. D. Lichtenhan (a1)...


We have recently begun investigating the rheological behavior of blends containing thermotropic liquid crystalline polymers (LCPs) and isotropic polymers. To aid us in our studies, we have designed a unique instrument for simultaneous visualization of morphology evolution and rheological measurements. Rectilinear shear is used, with a top glass bar being translated relative to a fixed bottom glass bar. The sample is heated by conduction from mica heaters embedded in the substrate materials supporting the bounding glass bars. Shear forces are obtained by measuring the (small) deflection of the bottom glass bar and heating assembly which is designed to be slightly compliant in the flow direction while rigid in direction normal to the sample.



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