The PolyRUN facility is a cutting-edge polymer and nanomaterials characterization facility at the Chemistry Department of Rutgers University-Newark, funded by the State of New Jersey. PolyRUN offers access to a broad variety of instruments, specialized in molecular weight and size determination, imaging, as well as thermal and mechanical characterization of many kind of materials, from hard solids, polymers, biofilms and tissue, fibers, soft-gels, viscous liquids, etc. It is now fully operational, providing access to researchers at Rutgers, other nearby academic institutions, and industrial partners.

 

We look to bring cutting edge research in polymer science, nanomaterials, bioengineering, and medicinal science to the Rutgers University-Newark campus while serving as a specialized testing facility for advanced polymer and materials science for the State of New Jersey.

Our main laboratory is located in the basement of the Life Science Center I (225 University Avenue, Newark NJ), Room 006.

 

We provide access for trained users to the following instruments and also offer training to new users. Service measurements can also be provided in most cases.

Our mission is to provide easy access and training to prospective users, inside or outside academia. If you are interested in becoming a user of one or several of our instruments, contact directly the laboratory coordinator to discuss your analysis needs.

 

We offer training sessions for groups of interested people, including the testing of one of your materials. Undergraduate students MUST be accompanied at all times by a trained graduate student, postdoc, or PI while using our facilities.

 

You can check the availability and book your instrument time by contacting our laboratory coordinator.

 

LABORATORY DIRECTOR:

            Prof. Frieder Jäkle

            Email: fjaekle@rutgers.edu

            Phone: 970 353 5064

 

LABORATORY COORDINATOR:

            Dr. Fernando Vidal

            Email: fervidal@rutgers.edu

            Phone: 973 353 1967

 

We are located at the Life Science Center (entrance through Warren St):

Life Science Center (LSC I – LSC006)

225 University Ave

Newark NJ 07102

A differential scanning calorimeter (DSC) measures the differences in heat flow between a sample and a reference pan in a controlled environment of temperature and atmosphere (nitrogen). This technique is ideal for detecting many important materials properties, such as phase transitions (including glass, melting, and crystallization), curing or crosslinking, solid-state reactions, among others.

            PolyRUN has available a TA Instruments Discovery DSC.  Some important features include:

  • Work under moisturefree atmosphere (nitrogen).
  • Autosampler with 50 positions for automated and programmable sample sequence.
  • Discovery Refrigerated Cooling System (RSC90). Integrated system, it provides cooling capacity without the need of liquid nitrogen up to −90 °C. Upper temperature range is 550 °C.
  • TZero technology: high quality aluminum sample pans and lids (regular and hermetic). Approximate volume = 20 – 40 μL; mass range = 5 – 10 mg

 

For more information: http://www.tainstruments.com/products/thermal-analysis/differential-scanning-calorimeters/

 

Contact us for pricing, training, and availability.

2.1. Differential Scanning Calorimeter (DSC)

A thermal gravimetric analyzer (TGA) measures the weight loss of a sample (small variations can be detected with high precision) inside of a furnace up to very high temperatures (800 to 1000°C). This technique is essential to determine the thermal stability of materials, as well as the percent weight content of different chemical constituents (typically associated with loss of absorbed/adsorbed chemicals or functional groups).

            PolyRUN has available a TA Instruments Discovery TGA.  Some important features include:

  • Autosampler with 25 positions for automated and programmable sample sequence.
  • Regular Pt pans, for temperature up to 700 °C. Mass range = 5–20 mg
  • Hightemp Pt pans, for temperature up to 1000 °C. Mass range = 5–20 mg
  • Controlled linear heating ramps.

 

For more information: http://www.tainstruments.com/products/thermal-analysis/thermogravimetric-analysis/ 

 

Contact us for pricing, training, and availability.

2.2. Thermal Gravimetric Analyzer (TGA)

 

A dynamic mechanical analyzer (DMA) measures viscoelastic properties of solid materials, such as films or fibers, as a function of time, frequency, and temperature. Materials can be tested in different modes, such as tension, compression, or bending, depending on materials applications. DMA provides with a wide range of experiment set-ups for obtaining information of important properties, including glass transition temperature, creep, damping, stress relaxation, and material stiffness among others.

            PolyRUN has available a TA Instruments Q800.  Some important features include:

  • Tension (film or fiber) clamp. Sample length range: 530 mm, width up to 6.5 mm, and thickness up to 2 mm.
  • Dual and single-cantilever bending clamp (35 mm).
  • Compression (up to 15 mm) and penetration clamps.
  • Temperature range: room temperature to 600 °C.
  • Frequency range: 0.01 to 200 Hz.
  • Force range: 0.0001 to 18 Newtons. Ideal for materials with viscoelastic modulus from 1000 Pa to 1000 GPa. 
  • Amplitude range: 0.5 to 10,000 microns (25 mm total length).

 

For more information: http://www.tainstruments.com/products/thermal-analysis/thermogravimetric-analysis/ 

 

Contact us for pricing, training, and availability.

2.3. Dynamic Mechanical Analyzer (DMA)

 

A rheometer is a popular tool for studying the flow and deformation of viscoelastic materials in a well-controlled fashion under shear stress. The instrument measures the deformation (strain) that occurs after the application of a force (stress), and the many modes of operation (flow, step transient, and oscillation) provide an enormous amount of useful information, including complex viscosity, storage modulus, loss modulus, relaxation time, crossover temperatures, creep, etc. 

            PolyRUN has available a TA Instruments DHR-2 Rheometer.  Some important features include:

  • Available geometries: 8 mm, 25 mm (cross hatched), 25 mm (sandblasted), and 40 mm.
  • Peltier plate. Temperature range: −20 to 200°C.
  • Torque range: 2 – 200 mN.m (resolution of 0.1 mN.m)
  • Frequency range: 1.0E−07 to 100 Hz.
  • Angular velocity range: 0 – 300 rad/s

 

For more information: http://www.tainstruments.com/products/rheology/

 

Contact us for pricing, training, and availability.

 

2.4. Rheometer

 

Gel permeation chromatography is an essential tool to determine the molecular weight and molecular weight distribution of synthetic polymers and macromolecules. It employs size-exclusion columns to separate a sample as a function of its hydrodynamic volume. We are currently operating our GPC systems in THF and DMF using styragel columns.

            PolyRUN has available:

  • Malvern Viscotek GPC system:
    • Triple Detector Array (for absolute molecular weight determination): Right Angle Light Scattering (RALS), Low Angle Light Scattering (LALS), and Refractive Index (RI)
    • PDA detector for analysis at different wavelengths (including 2D plots)
    • PS-standards (normal calibration): 350,000 Da to 550 Da
  • Waters GPC system (THF, DMF as solvents):
    • Refractive Index (RI), UV detector
    • PS-standards (normal calibration): 350,000 Da to 550 Da; PMMA and PEO standards also available for measurements in DMF.

Sample requirements:

  • Premade solutions of polymer samples need to be filtered prior to analysis (mandatory). We recommend using disposable nylon filters (0.2 μm pore size).
  • Concentration requirements: 35 mg per mL, in a total of 1.5 mL of the same solvent running in the instrument (on regular HLPC vials with septum cap).

Contact us for pricing, training, and availability.

2.5. Gel Permeation Chromatographers (GPC)

 

Equipment in the PolyRUN Facility was acquired with support by the New Jersey Higher Education Equipment Leasing Fund (ELF III 047-04).

 

Contact us for information about instrument training, facility prices, and booking instrument time.