Document Type



Final Published Version

Publication Title

Journal of Physical Chemistry A



Publication Date



Using solid state 1H nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spin-lattice relaxation experiments, we have investigated the effects of several solid-solid phase transitions on t-butyl group and methyl group rotation in solid 1,3,5-tri-t-butylbenzene. The goal is to relate the dynamics of the t-butyl groups and their constituent methyl groups to properties of the solid determined using single-crystal X-ray diffraction and differential scanning calorimetry (DSC). On cooling, the DSC experiments see a first-order, solid-solid phase transition at either 268 K or 155 K (but not both) depending on thermal history. The 155 K transition (on cooling) is identified by single-crystal X-ray diffraction to be one from a monoclinic phase (above 155 K) where the t-butyl groups are disordered (that is, with a rotational six-fold intermolecular potential dominating) to a triclinic phase (below 155 K) where the t-butyl groups are ordered (that is, with a rotational threefold intermolecular potential dominating). This transition shows very different DSC scans when both a 5 mg polycrystalline sample and a 19 mg powder sample are used. The 1H spin-lattice relaxation experiments with a much larger 0.7 g sample are very complicated and, depending on thermal history, can show hysteresis effects over many hours and over very large temperature ranges. In the high-temperature monoclinic phase, the t-butyl groups rotate with NMR activation energies (closely related to rotational barriers) in the 17-23 kJ mol-1 range and the constituent methyl groups rotate with NMR activation energies in the 7-12 kJ mol-1 range. In the lowtemperature triclinic phase, the rotations of the t-butyl groups and their methyl group in the aromatic plane are quenched (on the NMR time scale). The two out-of-plane methyl groups in the t-butyl groups are rotating with activation energies in the 5-11 kJ mol-1 range.


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