Department of Physics Papers

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We have designed, constructed, and evaluated an environmental chamber that has in situ dynamic control of temperature (25 to 90 °C) and relative humidity (0% to 95%). The compact specimen chamber is designed for x-ray scattering in transmission with an escape angle of 2θ = ±30°. The specimen chamber is compatible with a completely evacuated system such as the Rigaku PSAXS system, in which the specimen chamber is placed inside a larger evacuated chamber (flight path). It is also compatible with x-ray systems consisting of evacuated flight tubes separated by small air gaps for sample placement. When attached to a linear motor (vertical displacement), the environmental chamber can access multiple sample positions. The temperature and relative humidity inside the specimen chamber are controlled by passing a mixture of dry and saturated gas through the chamber and by heating the chamber walls. Alternatively, the chamber can be used to control the gaseous environment without humidity. To illustrate the value of this apparatus, we have probed morphology transformations in Nafion® membranes and a polymerized ionic liquid as a function of relative humidity in nitrogen.


Salas-de la Cruz, D., Denis, J. G., Griffith, M. D., King, D. R., Heiney, P. A., & Winey, K. I. (2012). Environmental chamber for in situ dynamic control of temperature and relative humidity during x-ray scattering. Review of Scientific Instruments, 83(2), 025112. doi: 10.1063/1.3685753

© 2012 American Institute of Physics. This article may be downloaded for personal use only. Any other use requires prior permission of the author and the American Institute of Physics. The following article appeared in Rev. Sci. Instrum. 83, 025112 (2012) and may be found at

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Date Posted: 27 March 2012

This document has been peer reviewed.