DSC Analysis and Calculator

Content Developed by Dr Dominik Konkolewicz and Obed Dodo

The spreadsheet and the associated read-me file can be used to determine glass transition temperatures (Tg) of polymers using the inflection point method applied to a heating cycle of a differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) data set. It can also be used to calculate melt temperatures (Tm) from DSC.

It is important that the first heating cycle not be included as this could contain thermal history of the polymer material. The second or subsequent cycle is used and the inflection point calculated to give the Tg. There are other methods to calculate Tg, although the inflection point method involves the little fitting but does require some smoothing.

Example heating curve obtained from differential scanning calorimetry

All that is needed to use these Tg calculator spreadsheets is Microsoft Excel. The spreadsheet can also be used to calculate a Tm, although in that case the point where the derivative is zero, not most negative should be selected as the temperature corresponding to Tm.

Original work was developed as part of the publications: E. B. Stopler, O. J. Dodo, K. A. Weaver, A. C. Hull, P. Chakma, R. E Edelmann, L. Ranly, M. B. Zanjani, Z. Ye and D. Konkolewicz, ‘Carbon Nanotube Enhanced Dynamic Polymeric Materials through Macromolecular Engineering’, Materials Advances 2020, 1, 1071-1076, DOI: 10.1039/D0MA00143K and P. Chakma, S. V. Wanasinghe, C. N. Morley, S. C. Francesconi, K. Saito, J. L. Sparks, D. Konkolewicz, ‘Heat and Light Responsive Materials through pairing Dynamic thiol-Michael and Coumarin Chemistry’, Macromolecular Rapid Communications 2021, 42, 2100070, DOI: 10.1002/marc.202100070.

If using this DSC Tg template in your research resulting in publication, MACRO asks that you acknowledge the template as follows. “We acknowledge the DSC Tg calculator from the Konkolewicz group provided by the Macromolecular Alliance for Community Resources and Outreach.”