Mechanical anisotropy in crystalline saccharin: nanoindentation studies

Kiran, M. S. R. N. ; Varughese, Sunil ; Malla Reddy, C. ; Ramamurty, U. ; Desiraju, Gautam R. (2010) Mechanical anisotropy in crystalline saccharin: nanoindentation studies Crystal Growth & Design, 10 (10). pp. 4650-4655. ISSN 1528-7483

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The nanoindentation technique has been employed to relate the mechanical properties of saccharin single crystals with their internal structure. Indentations were performed on (100) and (011) faces to assess the mechanical anisotropy. The load-displacement (P-h) curves indicate significant differences in the nature of the plastic deformation on the two faces. The P-h curves obtained on the (011) plane are smooth, reflecting homogeneous plasticity. However, displacement bursts (pop-ins) are observed in the P-h curves obtained on the (100) plane suggesting a discrete deformation mechanism. Marginal differences exist in the hardness and modulus on the two faces that may, in part, be rationalized, although one notes that saccharin has a largely three-dimensional close-packed structure. The structural origins of the fundamentally different deformation mechanisms on (100) and (011) are discussed in terms of the dimensionality of the hydrogen bonding networks. Down the (100) planes, the saccharin dimers are stacked and are stabilized by nonspecific van der Waals interactions mostly between aromatic rings. However, down the (011) planes, the molecules are stabilized by more directional and cross-linked C-H···O hydrogen bonds. This anisotropy in crystal packing and interactions is reflected in the mechanical behavior on these faces. The displacements associated with the pop-ins were found to be integral multiples of the molecule separation distances. Nanoindentation offers an opportunity to compare experimentally, and in a quantitative way, the various intermolecular interactions that are present in a molecular crystal.

Item Type:Article
Source:Copyright of this article belongs to American Chemical Society.
ID Code:62539
Deposited On:22 Sep 2011 03:15
Last Modified:10 Jul 2012 04:46

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