It is generally accepted that the mechanical properties of soda lime silica (SLS) glass can be affected by the interaction between sodium ions and hydrous species (silanol groups and water molecules) in its surface region. While the amount of these hydrous species can be estimated from hydrogen profiles and infrared spectroscopy, their chemical environment in the glass network is still not well understood. This work employed vibrational sum frequency generation (SFG) spectroscopy to investigate the chemical environment of hydrous species in the surface region of SLS float glass. SLS float glass shows sharp peaks in the OH stretching vibration region in SFG spectra, while the OH stretch peaks of glasses that do not have leachable sodium ions and the OH peaks of water molecules in condensed phases are normally broad due to fast hydrogen bonding dynamics. The hydrous species responsible for the sharp SFG peaks for the SLS float glass were found to be thermodynamically more stable than physisorbed water molecules, did not exchange with D2O, and were associated with the sodium concentration gradient in the dealkalized subsurface region. These results suggested that the hydrous species reside in static solvation shells defined by the silicate network with relatively slow hydrogen bonding dynamics, compared to physisorbed water layers on top of the glass surface. A putative radial distribution of the hydrous species within the SLS glass network was estimated based on the OH SFG spectral features, which could be compared with theoretical distributions calculated from computational simulations.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Materials Science(all)
- Condensed Matter Physics
- Surfaces and Interfaces