In situ dielectric spectroscopy has been used to characterize vapor-deposited glasses of methyl-m-toluate (MMT), an organic glass former with low fragility (m=60). Deposition near 0.84Tg produces glasses of very high kinetic stability; these materials are comparable in stability to the most stable glasses produced from more fragile glass formers. Highly stable glasses of MMT, when annealed above Tg, transform into the supercooled liquid by a heterogeneous mechanism. A constant velocity propagating front is initiated at the free surface and controls the transformation of thin films. The transition to a bulk-dominated transformation process occurs at 5μm, the largest length scale reported for any glass. Contrary to recent conclusions, we find that physical vapor deposition can form highly stable organic glasses across the entire range of liquid fragilities.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- General Physics and Astronomy