One experiment makes a direct comparison of structural recovery with equilibrium relaxation

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For a molecular glass-former, propylene glycol, we directly compare the equilibrium fluctuations, measured as "structural"relaxation in the regime of linear response, with structural recovery, i.e., field induced physical aging in the limit of a small perturbation. The two distinct correlation functions are derived from a single experiment. Because the relaxation time changes only 2% during structural recovery, no aging model is needed to analyze the results. Although being conceptually different processes, dielectric relaxation and recovery dynamics are observed to be identical for propylene glycol, whereas single-particle dynamics as seen by photon correlation spectroscopy are significantly faster. This confirms the notion that structural recovery and aging are governed by all modes observed by dielectric spectroscopy, i.e., including cross correlations, not only by single-particle dynamics. A comparison with analogous results for other materials suggests that the relation between relaxation and recovery time scales may be material specific rather than universal.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number224501
JournalJournal of Chemical Physics
Issue number22
StatePublished - Dec 14 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Physics and Astronomy
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry


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