Sol-gel polymerization: analysis of molecular mechanisms and the effect of hydrogen

Glen E. Martin, Steve Garofalini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Citations (Scopus)


The polymerization of silicic acid molecules (H4SiO4) was simulated using classical molecular dynamics with multibody potentials. The mechanisms involved in the condensation process were analyzed. Although a condensation mechanism was observed in the simulations which corresponds to the mechanism commonly assumed, additional mechanisms not previously presented were also observed. The advancement of polymerization was found to depend on the non-bridging oxygens' coordination with hydrogen, the number of bridging oxygens around five-coordinated silicons and atomic momentum. The results show consistency with the chemistry described for the acid catalyzed sol-gel process where hydrogen acts as the catalyst and chains form before rings.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)68-79
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Non-Crystalline Solids
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2 1994

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Sol-gel polymerization: analysis of molecular mechanisms and the effect of hydrogen'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this