This article details the exploration of perdeuterated acrylic acid at high pressure using neutron diffraction. The structural changes that occur in acrylic acid-d4 are followed via diffraction and rationalised using the Pixel method. Acrylic acid undergoes a reconstructive phase transition to a new phase at ~0.8 GPa and remains molecular to 7.2 GPa before polymerising on decompression to ambient pressure. The resulting product is analysed via Raman, FT-IR spectroscopy and Differential Scanning Calorimetry and found to possess a different molecular structure compared with polymers produced via traditional routes.
Journal of Physical Chemistry B, 2014, Vol 118, Issue 14, p. 4044-4051