Jump to main content
Jump to site search

Issue 17, 2005
Previous Article Next Article

Liquid-like relaxation in hyperquenched water at ≤140 K

Author affiliations


Micrometre-sized water droplets were hyperquenched on a solid substrate held at selected temperatures between 150 and 77 K. These samples were characterized by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and X-ray diffraction. 140 K is the upper temperature limit to obtain mainly amorphous samples on deposition within 16–37 min. DSC scans of glassy water prepared at 140 K exhibit on heating an endothermic step assignable to glass → liquid transition, with an onset temperature (Tg) of 136 ± 2 K on heating at 30 K min−1. For Tg of ≈136 K, water relaxes during deposition at 140 K for 16 min, moving towards metastable equilibrium. The apparent increase in heat capacity (ΔCp) depends, for a given rate of heating, on the rate of prior cooling, and a so-called overshoot develops. 140 K deposits cooled at a rate of 5, 2 or 0.2 K min−1 show on subsequent reheating at a rate of 30 K min−1 ΔCp values of 0.7, 1.1 and 1.7 J K−1 mol−1. This is consistent with liquid-like relaxation at 140 K, and it indicates that different limiting structures are obtained. When these 140 K deposits are in addition annealed at 130 K for 90 min, after slow-cooling at 5, 2 or 0.2 K min−1, their ΔCp values on subsequent reheating are similar to those of hyperquenched glassy water (HGW) deposits made at 77 K and annealed at 130 K. Thus, the previous ΔCp value of 1.6 J K−1 mol−1 obtained with glassy water samples annealed at 130 K (A. Hallbrucker, E. Mayer and G. P. Johari, Philos. Mag. B, 1989, 60, 179) must be an upper-bound limit because it contains a contribution from an overshoot. The Tg value of 140 K deposits, which had relaxed during deposition towards metastable equilibrium, is within experimental error the same as that of 140 K deposits annealed in addition at 130 K. This contradicts Yue and Angell’s (Y. Yue and C. Angell, Nature, 2004, 427, 717) claim for assigning the endothermic step to a sub-Tg peak or a “shadow” Tg. Our new data further support the proposed fragile-to-strong transition on cooling liquid water from ambient temperature into the deeply supercooled and glassy state. We also describe in detail experimental aspects to obtain HGW specimens, show the ultrastructure of the deposits using electron microscopy, and discuss the mechanism of our hyperquenching method.

Graphical abstract: Liquid-like relaxation in hyperquenched water at ≤140 K

Back to tab navigation

Article information

31 May 2005
22 Jul 2005
First published
01 Aug 2005

Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2005,7, 3210-3220
Article type

Liquid-like relaxation in hyperquenched water at ≤140 K

I. Kohl, L. Bachmann, A. Hallbrucker, E. Mayer and T. Loerting, Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2005, 7, 3210
DOI: 10.1039/B507651J

Social activity

Search articles by author